Common Mistakes in English - Good vs. Well

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"Good" is often mistakenly used in place of "well" by both native and non-native speakers. Take a look at the differences between the adjective and adverb form which is certainly one of the most common mistakes in English. The most important distinction is that 'well' describes how someone does something, whereas 'good' is used to describe a noun such as "good times", "good food", etc.

Good or Well

Good is an adjective and well is an adverb. Many people, including many native speakers, incorrectly use the adjective form good, rather than the adverb well.


I did good on the test. INCORRECT! - Correct form: I did well on the test.
She played the game good. INCORRECT! - Correct form: She played the game well.

Use the adjective form good when describing something or someone. In other words, use good when stating how something or someone is.


She is a good tennis player.
Tom thinks he is a good listener.

Use the adverb form well when describing how something or someone does something.


She did extremely well on the exam.
Our parents think we speak English well.

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Your Citation
Beare, Kenneth. "Common Mistakes in English - Good vs. Well." ThoughtCo, Aug. 27, 2020, Beare, Kenneth. (2020, August 27). Common Mistakes in English - Good vs. Well. Retrieved from Beare, Kenneth. "Common Mistakes in English - Good vs. Well." ThoughtCo. (accessed March 28, 2023).