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This question already has an answer here:

I have often seen initialised in lots of text, but when I want to write it in Microsoft office word, it says it was misspelled and it should be initialized instead of initialised.

so here is my question:

Which one of them is the correct spelling?

and if both of them are correct, when I should use one or the other? Is there any rule regarding this?

Additional note: when I was writing this post, it would give me a spelling error notice each time I wrote initialised.

marked as duplicate by Roger Sinasohn, sumelic, lbf, John Lawler, tchrist Aug 10 '18 at 1:50

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    There might be an option to select British spelling in your operating system or word processor. – Lawrence Aug 9 '18 at 23:12
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The variant of initialize with an s is the British spelling; the one with a z is standard American.

See here.

If you’re British, you’re likely to use the s variant. If you’re an American (like me), you’ll use the z variant.

Incidentally, many words that replace a z with an s tend to be British spelling, like “realise.” [American variant=realize]

  • Please do not answer duplicates; mark them as such. It’s more complex than this in many ways: “In British English, it doesn’t matter which spelling convention is chosen: neither is right or wrong, and neither is ‘more right’ than the other.” Thus spake Oxford. – tchrist Aug 10 '18 at 1:51
  • @tchrist It may not matter which “spelling convention” is chosen, and one spelling might not be more correct than the other, but the fact remains that -ise spellings aren’t standard in American English and are generally used in British English. – user305707 Aug 10 '18 at 2:15
  • Did you read the article? Why are you answering duplicates? – tchrist Aug 10 '18 at 2:20
  • @tchrist I did read the article, actually. I’ve read it before you posted it as well. And I did not know that this was a duplicate question until you mentioned it. – user305707 Aug 10 '18 at 2:51

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