English Proficiency Training: Misused Words - General vs Generally

There are quite a number of words in English that are commonly misused. It is not that people do not know when to use it but it is more of the familiarity of when to use such words. The English vocabulary is so wide that memorizing the usage of one word is almost impossible; thus, for starters, what candidates can do is to be familiar with its usage and take a lot of practices with this usage. At this point, let us study two of the commonly misused, confused, and interchanged words in the English vocabulary – general and generally.


According to thefreedictionary.com, general is an adjective which means concerned with, applicable to, or affecting the whole or every member of a class or category; affective or characteristic of the majority of those involved; prevalent.


  • As a general rule, punctuation marks are used in a sentence to signify a pause or full stop in reading.
  • I think what he said were just general comments regarding the exhibit. I do not find anything wrong with that.


Thefreedictionary.com describes generally as an adjective which means popularly, widely, usually, and for the most part.


  • It is generally recommended for candidates taking the IELTS to enrol in IELTS review classes.
  • Motorists are generally expected to be driving on the slow speed lane on the road.
  • What is the difference between the two?

For starters, "general" is followed by a noun that it describes since it functions as an adjective in the sentence. On the other hand, "generally" is an adverb which means it describes a verb, an adjective or another adverb. Here are some exercises to practice the usage of “general” and “generally.”

1. The wind was from a ____________ southerly direction to start with, shifting to south westerly later in the day.

2. These are only instances of a quite ­­__________ law.

3. This article will consider only ___________ anesthesia: regional and local techniques will be described in a subsequent article.

4. I assume that these were just ___________ comments you were making and not directed at me.

5. Linear systems are much easier to understand than nonlinear ones and the solutions are ____________ well-behaved.

6. In Ireland Elizabeth miscarries again, and is ____________ maltreated by her mother-in-law.

7. ____________ rule is that literally whatever the idea, query, problem, or project the regional office can help.

8. ____________ public during an air raid, for example, guiding people to the shelters.

9. She also did some drawing when she woke up, and ____________ chortled.

10. They are ____________ crepuscular (most active at dusk and dawn) and nocturnal.

Practice more with its usage online and be ready to use "general" and "generally" appropriately.

No comments:

Post a Comment