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‘Orientated’ or ‘Oriented’: Which is Correct?

Shaun Connell
December 11, 2023

Are you wondering whether 'orientated' or 'oriented' is correct? I can help!

Here is the short answer: 

  • 'Orientated' and 'oriented' are both acceptable spellings that mean the same thing. 
  • 'Oriented' is the U.S. English spelling of the adjective that means motivational, intellectually, or emotionally directed. 
  • 'Orientated' is the British English spelling of 'oriented.'

There is more to learn about the definition, uses, and pronunciation of these terms. So, keep reading!

Which is Correct 'Orientated' or 'Oriented?'

When it comes to which is correct, 'orientated' or 'oriented,' they are both acceptable spellings. However, if you are writing a blog post for British English-speaking readers, you will likely want to use 'orientated,' and if you are writing product descriptions for a United States-based company, you should use the latter unless your client instructs you otherwise in the style brief.

Definition of 'Orientated': What Does 'Orientated' Mean?

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines 'orientated' as an adjective that means:

  • To become familiarized with your surroundings
  • Adjusted to your location or position in relation to your surroundings or situation
  • To adjust to a new location or position
  • To become comfortable with a position, role, or situation

Synonyms and Similar Words to 'Orientated'

  • Adjusted
  • Oriented
  • Familiarized
  • Instructed
  • Acclimated
  • Accustomed
  • Briefed
  • Told
  • Schooled
  • Educated
  • Grounded
  • Trained
  • Enlightened
  • Warned
  • Initiated
  • Habituated
  • Enlightened

Definition of 'Oriented': What Does 'Oriented' Mean?

The same defines 'oriented' as an adjective that means:

  • Motivationally, emotionally, functionally, or intellectually directed
  • To become acclimated to a new experience, person, position, or idea
  • To achieve comfort or familiarity with your surroundings or a new concept, task, position, or role

Synonyms and Similar Words to 'Oriented'

  • Introduced
  • Orientated
  • Initiated
  • Founded
  • Educated
  • Familiarized
  • Subjected
  • Briefed
  • Instructed
  • Acquainted
  • Grounded
  • Informed
  • Warned
  • Advised
  • Schooled
  • Apprised
  • Enlightened
  • Versed
  • Presented

Pronunciation: How to Pronounce 'Orientated' or 'Oriented'

Next, we are going to look at the pronunciation of each spelling. Learning proper pronunciation should give you confidence to use these terms in verbal communication, and it should help you remember which spelling is correct for British English and U.S. English texts.

So, here is a guide you can refer to to ensure you are saying 'orientated' or 'oriented' accurately. 

  • Use this phonetic spelling to pronounce 'orientated':


  • Use this phonetic spelling to pronounce 'oriented':


When and How to Use 'Orientated' or 'Oriented'

You learned that 'orientated' and 'oriented' are the U.K. and U.S. English spellings of the same term. However, while both are accurate spellings, there are times when one is more appropriate than the other. So, here are a few tips to help you decide when to use 'orientated' or 'oriented': 

  • Use 'orientated' when you are addressing an audience in the U.K.

For example, you could say:

After she became orientated with the new park, it became her favourite place. 

*Note: The above sentence uses the British English spelling of favourite, which is spelled favorite in the United States because when you are using U.K. English, the spellings should all match that style.

So, you could say:

Once the high school students were oriented with the assignment, they were able to complete the writing assignment quickly. 

  • Use 'oriented' or 'orientated' to describe someone becoming familiar with their surroundings or circumstances.

As an example, I might say:

Waking up in the strange room was weird until I became oriented to my surroundings.


We knew we would be combatting stereotypes and prejudices, so we thought it would be a good idea to get orientated with the area before we started talking to locals. 

*Note: This example again uses U.K. spellings of the terms combatting and orientated.

Sample Sentences Using 'Orientated' or 'Oriented'

Finally, read these sample sentences utilizing 'orientated' or 'oriented.' They should help you remember the difference between these spellings and which to use in different situations.


  • Authors writing ebooks or novels using U.K. style should use British English spellings of words like orientated, colour, flavour, humour, neighbour, and labour.
  • When we arrived, we orientated ourselves in Vancouver before our journies to other Canadian cities.
  • I wrote several articles on the benefits of being orientated with your location before you speak publicly or present ideas to an audience of strangers.
  • Of course, getting orientated in a new place takes patience, but with a positive attitude and determination, you will be comfortable quickly.


  • The supervisor oriented the new border agents on their first day.
  • Please get oriented on the topic to prepare for the assignment.
  • The driver oriented himself to the roads and stopped before he started his new delivery route.
  • After they oriented the recruits everyone felt more comfortable.


  • I write U.K. and U.S. product descriptions for the same client, so sometimes it is challenging to remember whether to use orientated or oriented.
  • If you are unsure whether to use orientated or oriented, you should consult your editor.

A Last Word of Advice About Whether 'Orientated' or 'Oriented' is Correct

We covered a lot of information. So, here is a recap of what you learned about whether to use 'orientated' or 'oriented': 

  • 'Orientated' and 'oriented' are both acceptable English spellings. 
  • 'Orientated' is the preferred spelling if you are addressing an audience that uses U.K. English. 
  • 'Oriented' is the correct spelling to use when you are writing for American audiences. 

There are many terms like these that have U.S. and U.K. spellings. When you are trying to decide which spelling to use, it is proper to use the version that is appropriate for the audience or geographical area you are addressing.

Nevertheless, words like these with two acceptable spellings can be challenging to keep straight. So, if you find yourself wondering which version to use, you can always return to this guide to review this lesson.

You can also learn about other alternative spellings like these here. We post guides like this with brief and detailed explanations, definitions, usage tips, pronunciations, and examples every week, so come back frequently to increase your vocabulary and learn essential grammar rules.

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Written By:
Shaun Connell
Shaun Connell has spent his entire career either working as a freelance writer or hiring freelance writers for his many successful publications. Shaun has learned the exact tricks of the trade to hire the perfect writer for almost any niche.

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