-ie- or -ei-

Sometimes it is difficult to remember whether a word is spelled with -ie- or -ei-. There is a very simple rule about this:

I before E
except after C
or when sounding like AY
as in neighbour and weigh

Rule Examples
I before E achieve, believe, brief, chief, friend, grief, hygiene, patience, pierce, priest, thief
except after C ceiling, conceit, conceive, deceit, deceive, perceive, receipt, receive
or when sounding like AY beige, feint, freight, inveigle, neighbour, sleigh, vein, weigh, weight

Here are some common exceptions to the above rule:

Test yourself with this ie/ei spelling quiz