understudied or under-studied?

< Previous | Next >


New Member
Mexican Spanish
"The consequences and implications of this latest reform are still understudied."

Which would be correct, understudied or under-studied?

Last edited:
  • Harry Batt

    Senior Member
    USA English
    I've never seen it written with a hyphen, if popularity means anything. You would need to furnish context such as a sample sentence. It is, in fact, a rule of the Forum.

    Hyphens is a rather in depth grammar subject and run together words do not take a hyphen. I would feel that understudied is a run together word.

    Please supply your sample sentence or the moderator is likely to close down your thread.


    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    I would say it is a single word, under-studied, and in general these prefixes over- and under- meaning "too much" or "too little" can be hyphenated or not, your choice. In this particular case the hyphen is strongly advised, to differentiate it from the fused understudied meaning "be available as understudy for an actor".


    Senior Member
    English - United Kingdom
    I think here I would not use under-studied to avoid confusion, I would rather use something like "the consequences . . . . have not been studied sufficiently."


    New Member
    Englsih - USA
    Late to the party, but for what it's worth, in American academic contexts, "understudied" is perfectly acceptable to mean insufficiently studied. For example, see here and here.


    Senior Member
    English, U.S.
    The Google Ngram Viewer shows that the "fused" form understudied is the most frequent, for both BE and AE.
    Below the graph you can click on the word to see examples of it in books.
    < Previous | Next >