Tips on Using a Thesaurus

Tips on Using a Thesaurus
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A thesaurus allows you to search for synonyms and antonyms, improving your vocabulary. There are many types of thesauri and many methods of working with them. There are online thesauri, books, and programs. Check out these tips from to use a thesaurus properly.

When to Use It

Have you ever faced a situation where you cannot find the right word to describe an impression, feeling, or scene? This is when a thesaurus comes in handy. It can help you express your thoughts more precisely when writing technical papers. It can also help you provide a better description in creative writing. You can check various synonyms for a certain word and come up with the best solution.

A thesaurus also helps to build a vocabulary. You can use it to improve your writing skills and to discover new methods of expressing yourself.

Using a Thesaurus

  • When writing in Microsoft Word, you can find a thesaurus in the “Tools” menu. You can also right-click any word and see a few suggestions.
  • You can also visit and search for any word online.
  • Another way to access a thesaurus is to buy a book.

When Not to Use a Thesaurus

Sometimes, teachers ask their students to limit the use of a thesaurus. The reason is that if you use it too often, your paper might sound unnatural and amateurish. Use it when you need to find a perfect word but don’t forget that you should also sound authentic. Simply put, don’t overdo it and use a thesaurus wisely (carefully, intelligently, judiciously, sensibly, shrewdly).

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