Thanks for coming to, the world's #1 resource for all things InDesign!

Check Spelling Dynamically

One a recent consulting engagement, I had the opportunity to work with a client who had implemented InCopy a few weeks before I arrived. During our introduction we started talking about how things had been going up to this point and what roadblocks they’d been encountering. One user raised her hand and said “I miss the ability to check the spelling of the words as I type like I could in Microsoft Word.” It occurred to me at that point that if she doesn’t know that InCopy has dynamic spelling, then there probably are other users that don’t know this either.

Dynamic Spelling

First of all, let’s get the terminology out of the way. Dynamic Spelling is the feature in InCopy that will underline a word that it considers misspelled dynamically as you type or immediately after you paste copy into a document. Microsoft Word refers to this as “Check Spelling as you Type” while other programs might call it something totally different. The point is that most programs have this capability and InCopy is no different. The problem is that Dynamic Spelling is not enabled by default.

How it Works

To get started, you must enable Dynamic Spelling in InCopy by choosing Edit > Spelling > Dynamic Spelling.


Once enabled as you type and InCopy detects a misspelled word, the word will display a red squiggly underline underneath the word as seen below.


When a word appears with the squiggly line below it, you can fix the problem by re-typing the word or you can let InCopy do the work for you. Simply right-click on the misspelled word and InCopy provides a list of possible alternatives for the underlined word. Choose a replacement from the list and InCopy will change the misspelled word to the one that you select.


This is a really efficient way to deal with spelling errors as you type or as you see them and InCopy makes it really easy. Any additional words that you add to your user dictionary are also included when Dynamic Spelling is detecting words so it won’t flag any words unnecessarily.

More than Meets the Eye

Dynamically checking spelling is a great benefit for sure, but when Dynamic Spelling is enabled, it will also check for repeated words, uncapitalized words, and uncapitalized sentences as well. To control the color that appears for each of the errors when InCopy detects them, go to InCopy > Preferences > Spelling (Mac) or Edit > Preferences > Spelling (Windows) and choose a unique color for each of the options listed.


Be sure to enable Dynamic Spelling in InCopy so you can address spelling and grammatical issues on-the-fly!

Chad Chelius

Chad Chelius

Chad Chelius is an Adobe Certified Instructor, Author, and Consultant in the Philadelphia area and works with clients to improve their creative workflows using Adobe products. He's also the author of several courses on He specializes in PDF accessibility using Adobe InDesign and is a regular speaker at The InDesign Conference and PePcon.
Chad Chelius

Latest posts by Chad Chelius (see all)

  • - November 30, -0001
Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *