Tip 64: Despite or In Spite of

Unlike many of our Timely Tips, this tip isn’t to tell you how these words are different and how to use them correctly. Instead, I am here to tell you that these words mean the same thing. Surprised? So was I! I’ve always assumed that there were occasions, grammatically speaking or otherwise, when you needed…

Tip 60: Principle, Principal

It’s amazing how many people use these two words incorrectly. Principal is the name that you give the person who is in charge of an elementary or secondary school. He—or she—is the ‘main one.’ That’s what principal means. So whether you are talking about the administrator in a school or you are trying to point…

Tip 56: Whether or If?

Use ‘whether’ when there is an alternative involved . . . I can’t decide whether I should leave or stay. Can you tell me whether you intend to pay me? (The alternative is not to pay me.) Use a moisture analyser to visually indicate whether the dehydrator is functioning within its designed range. In most cases, do not use ‘or not’ with ‘whether.’ It is redundant. Please…