Real can be used as adjective as well as adverb.

As an adverb meaning of real is very

Therefore I think its usage in the following sentence is correct

The real important thing to remember is that language learning requires a lot of practice.

But according to my book it is wrong and instead really should be used.

  • 1
    Your book is correct in that the use of real to mean very is described by Oxford Dictionaries as 'Informal, North American'. If your sentence is for a piece of written work I would advise you to use really. May 29 '20 at 10:58

It should be "really important," because "really" is an adverb that modifies the adjective "important."

Adjectives modify nouns, so you can say a "real thing," but they do not modify other adjectives, so you can's say a "real important thing."


The adjective is "real." The adverb is "really." In English, the -ly ending is a good indicator of an adverb.

Adjective -- modifying nouns:

This is real beef (not a plant-based substitute).

He is a real scientist.

Adverb -- modifying verbs:

I really love eating beef.

He really does scientific research.

His research is really important. (Even though it follows the verb 'is')

  • Note that while adverbs do commonly end in -ly, not all of them do. And flat adverbs are also used idiomatically, even though some people object. The classic example is road signs that tell people to drive slow rather than drive slowly. It's really important is fine, but, although less natural, people do also say it's real important, making use of the adjective as a flat adverb. May 29 '20 at 18:42
  • Absolutely, good comments. People should be aware that 'it's real important' is not for professional(ly) written materials.
    – user8356
    May 29 '20 at 19:25

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