Home / Grammar /

Highschool or High School?

You may have run into the problem of how to correctly spell a word a few times in your life. Many people have difficulty deciding whether to separate the two words in HIGH SCHOOL or keep them as a single word HIGHSCHOOL.

But there is an obvious answer to the question of how to spell it correctly, and we will go through it in the remainder of this article.

Which Is The Right Way To Spell “Highschool” or “High School”

HIGHSCHOOL and HIGH SCHOOL are used so interchangeably all over the internet that it is hard to determine the correct spelling. But we have found the answer- the right way to spell it is as two words- HIGH SCHOOL.

Using it as just one word- HIGHSCHOOL is not grammatically correct, so you should avoid using it as much as possible. The confusion about the correct way to spell this high school probably came from the first misspelling of the word, which then stuck.

However, since high school is an open compound word like real estate or living room, there should always be a space between the two words for it to make proper sense.

What Do You Mean By Compound Words?

Regarding compound words, there are two general groups- open compound words and closed compound words. A closed compound word, such as a bookstore, does not have a space between them. Notice that BOOK and STORE are separate words that can be used independently in sentences and make sense, much like HIGH and SCHOOL.

But if you want to add meaning to the word bookstore, having a space between them is the incorrect way to spell what you intend to state in your sentence.

For example

“I am going to the bookstore” is grammatically correct, but “I am going to the book store” is incorrect.

A good example of an open compound word is high school. Unlike closed compound words, open compound words do not require you to combine the two words but keep a space between them to make sense at all.

For example

“I just graduated from high school” is correct, but I just graduated from highschool is incorrect.

Another type of compound word is the hyphenated compound word which are words like twenty-three or brother-in-law.

Can You Use A Hyphen In High School?

It is incorrect to use a hyphen in high school to make it high-school in most cases. But there are a few exceptions to this rule like, you can use high-school as the correct form of the word when you mean it as an adjective in a sentence.

For example, “I am a high-school student.” This is correct since HIGH-SCHOOL is the adjective that describes the person (subject) following it.


Fact checked:
Content is rigorously reviewed by a team of qualified and experienced fact checkers. Fact checkers review articles for factual accuracy, relevance, and timeliness. Learn more.

About the author

Dalia Y.: Dalia is an English Major and linguistics expert with an additional degree in Psychology. Dalia has featured articles on Forbes, Inc, Fast Company, Grammarly, and many more. She covers English, ESL, and all things grammar on GrammarBrain.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.