World English Language Day: 10 Commonly Misused Words

By Grace Shaibu

World English Language Day: 10 commonly misused Words.

Today 23rd of April is World English language day and we have decided to profile some of the most commonly misused words in the day to day lexicons of Nigerians. That we misuse them so often that it goes un-noticed doesn’t make them right. The list is endless and we want to encourage you to make your contribution to the list in the comment section.


  1. Present: This is primarily an adjective and sometimes can be used a noun. As an adjective, it can be used to notify the importance of a person’s availability.


The finance officer must be Present at the meeting but more often than not, people have turned this around to be a “Gift’’. Come and see my present. This is totally wrongly.


  1. Advise: This is a verb, an action word used in communicating. Advise is an information, recommendation to someone. Though, this is mostly used wrongly as a noun. You hear people say, I gave him advise. The correct use is, I advised my son to pick a form jamb form. I gave an advise on how ell we can channel marketing.


  1. Advice: This is a noun. This means a help rendered, guidance or counselling. This should be used as I gave and Advice. This is my piece of Advice to you not Advise to you.


  1. Parameter: This is based on statistics, variable and it’s not a point of restriction.


People say, you can only walk within these parameter {limit}. When it’s supposed to be you can work with these parameter{s}.


  1. Phenomena: Plural of phenomenon which is commonly used anyhow. Some say, these are the phenomenon instead of phenomena.


  1. Practise: Practice is practice. It can be used as a noun and a verb altogether. There is no difference in it, it’s got a duo meaning.


  1. Verbal: This is linguistic in meaning and has nothing to do with our ways of putting it. “Let’s have a verbal talk”. There’s only an oral talk not a verbal talk.


  1. Bogus: this means not genuine, fake and doesn’t mean Big as people put it. Some people say, I cannot carry the load because it’s Bogus. This is wrong.


  1. New age: This means, holistic, pure and spiritual. This has nothing to do with modernity.


  1. Staunch: This means a very firm confirmation and it also means faithful, loyal. This has not to do with a smell or a means of stopping something. He’s a staunch man of God this is the correct use of the word and not I can perceive a staunch smell from the house





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