Some compound nouns can be grouped from two words into one. It would help to know why this occurs and which words are affected. This article will look into using “schoolwork” or “school work” as one or two words.
Schoolwork or School work?
“Schoolwork” is the correct spelling variation. You should write it as one word, as in “I did the schoolwork early,” to show that you understand the rules surrounding it. “School work” is grammatically correct as a phrase, but it is not commonly written as two words.
Here are some examples showing you how to use “schoolwork” in a sentence:
- I am going to need you to complete this schoolwork as soon as possible. Can you do that?
- This schoolwork isn’t going to complete itself. When are you going to finish it?
You should group the two words because they are commonly written together.
AP Style rules dictate that you may group common words like “school” and “work” when they often appear in the same sentences. If the difference between the two sounds is clear enough, there is no reason you can’t keep them grouped.
Technically, there is nothing wrong with using “school work” as two words. It is grammatically correct, but it is not commonplace. If you use it, you’re still using proper English.
- I like doing my school work at the same time as my chores.
The only issue is that it’s not expected in writing.
Is “Schoolwork” One Word?
“Schoolwork” is spelt as one word. You can refer to common English dictionaries like The Cambridge Dictionary (representing UK English) and The Merriam-Webster Dictionary (representing US English) to see “schoolwork” as one word.
Official dictionaries recognize “schoolwork” as one word, thus, allowing you to spell it as one word. It’s very common for the words to appear together.
- I need this schoolwork handed in by the end of the week.
From this example, “schoolwork” makes the most sense as one word. You should use it in this way because “school” modifies “work” to show that it’s something you’re completing for “school.”
Is “School work” Two Words?
“School work” is grammatically correct, but you should not use it when referring to work for a school project.
“Schoolwork” is written as one word, meaning that “school work” has a redundant space between the two words. You should avoid using it in this context to show you are familiar with common English rules.
With that said, there is one specific situation when “school work” is two words. If you use “work” as a verb, you will find that “school work” is correct.
- I think the school works by a different system. I’ll look into it.
- This school works better than the one I went to before.
In this circumstance, “school work” has to be two words. “School” is a noun, and “work” is a verb. You combine the two to show how a school works as an action. Grouping the words here would be incorrect:
- Incorrect: The schoolworks in mysterious ways.
What to Remember
“Schoolwork” is the most appropriate spelling variation. You should stick to it while following British or American English rules. “School” and “work” frequently appear together to make this acceptable.
“School work” should only be split when used as a noun and verb combo. In any other case, write it as one word.
Martin holds a Master’s degree in Finance and International Business. He has six years of experience in professional communication with clients, executives, and colleagues. Furthermore, he has teaching experience from Aarhus University. Martin has been featured as an expert in communication and teaching on Forbes and Shopify. Read more about Martin here.