In the English language, we often come across words that are slightly varied in spelling. Coming across these variations, we think one way is correct over another. In most cases, however, it’s just a matter of US English or UK (or Canadian) English.

Is it shoveling or shovelling? Seeing words spelled in ways we’re not used to can make us question whether we’ve been spelling them wrong this entire time. The thing is, neither way is wrong. It’s just a matter of either preference or location. In fact, we probably use a combination of both US and Canadian spelling in our everyday writing.

To ensure you know when and where to spot these discrepancies, the following are some categories (with examples) of word types to watch out for when making US/Canadian spelling distinctions:

Dropping the ‘E’

acknowledgment (US) / acknowledgement (CAN), judgment (US) / judgement (CAN)

Double ‘L’

jewelery (US) / jewellery (CAN), traveling (US) / travelling (CAN)

The ‘OH/OW’ Sound

donut (US) / doughnut (CAN), plow (US) / plough (CAN)

The –og Suffix

catalog (US) / catalogue (CAN), analog (US) / analogue (CAN)

The –or Suffix

favorite (US) / favourite (CAN), color (US) / colour (CAN), neighbor (US) / neighbour (CAN)

The –ize Suffix

organize (US) / organise (CAN), apologize (US) / apologise (CAN)

-ce or –ise?

practice (US) / practise (as a verb) (CAN)

-er or –re?

center (US) / centre (CAN), theater (US) / theatre (CAN)