5 Minute Grammar Lesson ~ Alot? or A lot?


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Another common grammar mistake that happens frequently, is using ALOT which is not actually a word. If you’re wondering whether to use ALOT or A LOT, keep reading for a quick explanation.

alot or a lot

5 Minute Grammar Lesson ~ Alot or A lot?

It’s TWO words! It’s never okay to write alot – simply wrong, wrong, wrong. When in doubt, look for the little red squiggly line under alot {the little line that I miss a lot…} which indicates a problem that needs to be fixed.

Just remember: it’s not alittle or ahuge or asmall or abig. OR ALOT. Separate the two words to be grammatically correct and make your English teacher happy. {And pay attention to little squiggly lines that indicate problems…} 😉

Ok, let’s get a little more technical to really make this message clear.

A LOT is a phrase that means “to a great extent or degree” or “a large amount or quantity”.

ALOT is not a word recognized by most style guides or dictionaries, and is considered a misspelling of “a lot”.

So, is it correct to use “alot”? Quite simply, no. “Alot” is not a proper word in the English language, and using it can be considered a spelling error. It makes your writing appear less professional and less credible to your readers.

Instead, use A LOT when you want to indicate a large quantity or extent. Here are a few examples of correct usage:

  • I have A LOT of work to do today.
  • The park has A LOT of trees and flowers.
  • We learned A LOT in our history class.

If you have trouble remembering that A LOT is two different words, you can use other words instead. It’s always a good idea to use different words or phrases to avoid repetition. This is also a good practice when you aren’t sure about the correct word to us. I use this practice A LOT when I can’t remember whether it’s LAY or LIE, for instance, or EFFECT or AFFECT.

Here are a few alternatives you can use instead of “a lot”:

  • Many
  • Numerous
  • Plenty
  • A great deal
  • A large number/amount
Alot or A lot

And that’s your 5 Minute Grammar Lesson. Until next time, Grammarians.

More grammar posts you may like:

Then or Than?

Your welcome or You’re Welcome

How to make the word PEOPLE possessive

Bias or Biased?

Do to or Due to?

Less or Fewer?

Should have gone or Should have went?

If you’re looking for helpful grammar resources, here are my top picks:

Strunk & White Elements of Style

The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation 

Eats, Shoots, and Leaves: The Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation 

The Grammar Girl’s Quick & Dirty Tips for Better Writing

About Michelle Marine

Michelle Marine is the author of How to Raise Chickens for Meat, a long-time green-living enthusiast, and rural Iowa mom of four. She empowers families to grow and eat seasonal, local foods; to reduce their ecological footprint; and to come together through impactful travel.

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  1. I well remember one of my English teachers going over this 30+ years ago. Never use “a lot” unless you’re referring to a piece of land; use a great deal or much instead. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Thank you for your grammar reminders. I spend a lot of time with children. It is easy to let grammar slip when surrounded by little ones. 🙂