You Could Look It Up

Q. I have always been taught that there are two ways to spell dietitian (or dietician), but that the correct style is with a t not a c. A friend of mine disagrees completely and feels that dietitian is the wrong spelling and therefore should never be used. Another friend of mine says that dietitians spell it with a t. I am really curious. . . . What is the correct spelling?

Q. What exactly does the phrase “in terms of” mean? I hear it used constantly, but try to avoid using it myself. I think it’s a trite phrase that doesn’t actually mean anything or have any purpose except to annoy me, actually. I know you’ve used it before, but what’s the best way to avoid using such a common phrase? I want to include it in my company’s style guide as a phrase not to use, and would like to offer an alternative. I’ve used “as far as” but I don’t like that either.

Q. For those who make a hobby of cruising garage sales, are they going “garage sale-ing,” “garage saling,” or “garage saleing?” Or are they not permitted this usage?

Q. With respect to insurance claims, which is the preferred usage, “payer” or “payor”? They appear to each be legitimate. Webster’s refers to “payor” as a variant of “payer,” but usage of “payor” is commonplace within the industry as well. Any definitive help is appreciated.

Q. I would like to know if a rule exists for the use of “all” and “all of.” Which of these sentences is correct: All the employees submitted vacation requests OR All of the employees submitted vacation requests? Thanks for your help.

Q. Is it “cell phone” or “cel phone”? I am working on a crash deadline, and would appreciate a quick response. Thank you so much!

Q. Dictionary.com defines “teleconference” as “a conference held among people in different locations by means of telecommunications equipment, such as closed-circuit television.” Would that mean that “teleconference call” is not as redundant as it seems? If we offer a teleconference via telephone only, would it be prudent to add “call” to the marketing collateral in order to avoid being pressed to provide a videoconference in fulfillment of our contract? Thank you.

Q. “School-age” or “school-aged”: the two seem to be used interchangeably.

Q. I can’t find a clear answer regarding “oversize” vs. “oversized” and similar terms.

Q. Are “more than” and “over” interchangeable when writing about quantities?

Q. I am trying to find the definition of “roman style” as contrasted with “Times New Roman.”

Q. My fashion expert daughter insists that denim does not go with “almost anything,” as I say it does. What is your opinion? Does denim match almost anything, including other colors and other fabrics, e.g., silk?