Browse Definitions :

Which is correct — oriented or orientated?

Writing for Business

Which is correct?
The user found that the application worked well if she could get the phone view ________ with the package barcode.
a. orientated
b. oriented


Answer: Either one.

Explanation:
I empathize with the commenter on this Wordwizard thread who said “Oriented and orientated are evidently synonymous, but I can’t stand it! Can anyone give me some ammunition for my claim that ‘orientated’ came to be accepted only after sufficient misuse? Or at least that ‘orientated’ is a poor substitute for ‘oriented?'”

There really isn’t much help for either of us — the most comfort we can take is that “orient” was the original form and “orientate” arose later.

Here’s an excerpt from a fascinating comment from Ken Greenwald:

The word passed into English in the 14th century via Old French as the adjective and noun ‘orient.’ With the spread of Christianity into Europe it became customary to build churches with their longitudinal axes pointing eastward toward Jerusalem. This practice gave rise to the use of ‘orient’ as a verb (via the French ‘orienter,’ a derivative of the adjective ‘orient’— 1727-41) meaning ‘to cause to face or point toward the east,’ to turn east. It was then used by extension (1842) to mean ‘to place or adjust in any particular way with respect to the cardinal points or other defined data.’ And then, finally, in 1850 it came to be used figuratively to mean ‘to adjust, correct, or bring into defined relations, to known facts or principles; to put oneself in the right position or relation; to ascertain one’s ‘bearings,’ find out ‘where one is.’”

> Read the rest of that thread.

Sigh. It appears that “orientated” is every bit as correct as “oriented.” I will just have to bear up and accept it.

Follow us on Twitter @tao_of_grammar

Dig Deeper on Writing for Business

SearchCompliance
  • ISO 31000 Risk Management

    The ISO 31000 Risk Management framework is an international standard that provides businesses with guidelines and principles for ...

  • pure risk

    Pure risk refers to risks that are beyond human control and result in a loss or no loss with no possibility of financial gain.

  • risk reporting

    Risk reporting is a method of identifying risks tied to or potentially impacting an organization's business processes.

SearchSecurity
  • biometric payment

    Biometric payment is a point-of-sale (POS) technology that uses biometric authentication physical characteristics to identify the...

  • Melissa virus

    Melissa was a type of email virus that initially become an issue in early 1999.

  • Twofish

    Twofish is a symmetric-key block cipher with a block size of 128 bits and variable-length key of size 128, 192 or 256 bits.

SearchHealthIT
SearchDisasterRecovery
  • What is risk mitigation?

    Risk mitigation is a strategy to prepare for and lessen the effects of threats faced by a business.

  • fault-tolerant

    Fault-tolerant technology is a capability of a computer system, electronic system or network to deliver uninterrupted service, ...

  • synchronous replication

    Synchronous replication is the process of copying data over a storage area network, local area network or wide area network so ...

SearchStorage
  • hard disk drive (HDD)

    A computer hard disk drive (HDD) is a non-volatile data storage device.

  • Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA)

    Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) is a technology that enables two networked computers to exchange data in main memory without ...

  • storage (computer storage)

    Data storage is the collective methods and technologies that capture and retain digital information on electromagnetic, optical ...

Close