*Alot vs. A Lot vs. Allot | Meaning & Correct Spelling

A lot and allot are pronounced the same, but they have unrelated meanings.

  • A lot is used as a pronoun meaning “many” or “a great amount” and an adverb meaning “very much” or “often.”
  • Allot is a verb meaning “assign” or “distribute.”
  • Alot is sometimes mistakenly used instead of a lot. However, it isn’t a real word and should be avoided.
Examples: A lot in a sentence Examples: Allot in a sentence
Javier eats a lot of fruit but not many vegetables. The president decided to allot more funding to national defense.
My cat sleeps a lot. Students should allot an hour every day to independent study.

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How to use a lot in a sentence

A lot can be used as a pronoun meaning “many” or “a large amount.” It can also be used as an adverb meaning “often” or “very much.” When used as a pronoun, a lot is often followed by the preposition “of” and a noun indicating what there is a lot of.

Examples: A lot in a sentence
I enjoyed the book even though it had a lot of verbiage.

Joanne did well on her exams because she studied a lot.

Note
A lot is considered quite informal and should be avoided in academic writing. Use a more formal alternative such as “many” or “a great deal.”

How to use allot in a sentence

Allot is a verb that refers to the act of assigning or distributing something for a particular purpose.

Examples: Allot in a sentence
The CEO plans to allot more tasks to her aide.

You should allot more time to learning new skills.

Worksheet: Allot vs. a lot

You can test your understanding of the difference between “allot” and “a lot” with the worksheet below. Fill in either “allot” or “a lot” in each sentence.

  1. Karen has ______ of clothes she wants to donate.
  2. I try to ______ at least one evening each week to learning German.
  3. Jen used to play tennis ______ before she hurt her wrist.
  4. The local government has ______ space for a town park.
  5. If you can ______ a day or two to home repair, you’ll be able to fix ______ of these issues.
  1. Karen has a lot of clothes she wants to donate.
    • “A lot” can be used as a pronoun meaning “many” or “a large amount.” It is often followed by the preposition “of” and a noun indicating what there is a lot of.
  1. I try to allot at least one evening each week to learning German.
    • “Allot” is a verb meaning “assign” or “distribute.”
  1. Jen used to play tennis a lot before she hurt her wrist.
    • “A lot” can be used as an adverb meaning “often” or “very much.”
  1. The local government has allotted space for a town park.
  1. If you can allot a day or two to home repair, you’ll be able to fix a lot of these issues.
    • In the first instance, the verb “allot” is correct. In the second instance, the pronoun “a lot” is correct.

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Frequently asked questions

What is a synonym for “a lot”?

There are numerous synonyms and near synonyms for the various meanings of a lot.

A large number or amount (pronoun) To a great extent (adverb) Often (adverb)
Many A great deal Consistently
Multiple Considerably Constantly
Numerous Greatly Continually
Several Significantly Frequently
Various Very much Regularly

 

Is “alot” a word?

People sometimes write “alot” instead of a lot. However, “alot” is not a real word and should be avoided. A lot is always written as two words.

Is “a lot” one word or two?

A lot (two words) is a pronoun and adverb meaning “very much” or “a large amount.” “Alot” (one word) is never correct.

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Ryan, E. (2023, February 05). *Alot vs. A Lot vs. Allot | Meaning & Correct Spelling. Scribbr. Retrieved February 6, 2023, from https://www.scribbr.com/common-mistakes/alot-or-a-lot/

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Eoghan Ryan

Eoghan has a lot of experience with theses and dissertations at bachelor's, MA, and PhD level. He has taught university English courses, helping students to improve their research and writing.