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I always thought that this phrase is wrong. That I can use either "the way to do something" or "how to do something". However, I find the phrase way how to very often in various places and that puts me in doubt whether this is correct or not.

Can you think of a proper usage example or are a lot of people just wrong when they use the phrase?

8

People do say "the way how to", but it's pointlessly redundant. I'd say simply "the way to" or "how to".

Example: "a way how to learn" is technically grammatically correct, but awkward. "How" is an adverb, which is modifying "to learn". So it's valid, just unnecessary.

  • "...a great way how to learn...": is 'way' redundant here? Or, is 'how' redundant? – Elberich Schneider Jun 13 '12 at 20:51
  • Thanks Jay! Is it gramatically correct? – David Štula Jun 13 '12 at 20:52
  • @David Stula. Yes, it is. And you can use it without asking yourself if it is: it is real English. – Elberich Schneider Jun 13 '12 at 20:56
  • Actually, I cannot upvote anything until I have at least 15 reputation. – David Štula Jun 13 '12 at 21:05
  • @Regis I would say "... a great way to learn." You cannot say "... a great how to learn" because "how" is an adverb and you cannot use an adjective ("great") to modify an adverb. If you want to use the word "great" you need some noun for it to modify. "Way" works fine. You could say "method", "technique", etc. – Jay Jun 13 '12 at 21:16
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According to the Czenglish book by Don Sparling, the construct This is the way how to do something is almost a signature phrase of Czech English and it is widely used by anybody from college professors to total beginners. Nevertheless, it is not standard English. The correct thing to say is either This is the way to do something or This is how to do something.

Source and some usage examples: http://nlp.fi.muni.cz/projekty/lexdb/czeng.cgi?direct=264

  • This does not answer the question. “Way to do” is not incorrect, first of all; and moreover, how Czech people do or do not have problems with this phrase is not relevant to the English language. – Janus Bahs Jacquet May 29 '14 at 12:12
  • Ok. I'll edit the 'incorrect' statement. But I still think it is relevant. It provides a possible explanation how the phrase appeared. Additionally, the name of the OP sounds Czech, so he may be interested in this. – user7610 May 29 '14 at 12:24
  • I tried again. Better? – user7610 May 29 '14 at 13:49

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