Microsoft Word grammar checker highlighting "different types"Let's consider below sentence for example:

Different types of animals have different types of diseases. For example ...

MS Word suggests I change different types to several/distinct/Diverse types of animals.

What's wrong with using Different word here, I don't understand why it keeps on suggesting same whenever I use *.

  • It offended the MS Word gods. If you don't appease them they will "lose" your document.
    – Hot Licks
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 1:54
  • 1
    There is a rule of composition that a writer should avoid repeating a distinctive word close to its original instance, especially if the same word is used for different purposes Here you have repeated "different" in the same sentence; that alarms MS Word. However, your use of "different" is similar in both cases, so you could make an argument for not changing it. But that's a bit subtle for MS Word.
    – Zan700
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 2:11
  • @Zan700 it gives same message even without repetition of word Different,check the screenshot I have just attached.
    – saket
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 2:58
  • @saket Yes, you didn't repeat different, but but you didn't use another adjective, so what you basically said was that animals have diseases. You need another adjective to clarify.
    – Zan700
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 4:51

1 Answer 1


There's nothing wrong with using different. Microsoft has simply put certain rules into its software. In addition to catching typos and obvious grammar mistakes, it tries to "nudge" you into using certain language.

In this case, it likely sees "types" (or "types of animals") and is trying to get you to use more formal language. Using "different types of animals" in a scientific paper, for instance, is, I suspect, less common than one of the options it's proposing. (Although, if it does the same thing when that's the only word you type, then it has nothing to do with context at all.)

What I find more strange than the simple fact that it's doing this at all, is that it thinks several is better than different. I can understand the other two, but not that one.

In the end, there's nothing wrong with different—it's just more informal. I wouldn't trust Microsoft's style decisions at more than a basic level. See what it suggests and then accept or ignore it as is appropriate.

  • I think "Many different types" sounds more idiomatic.
    – Barmar
    Commented Apr 21, 2018 at 17:55

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