Acrolinx Glossary

Do you sometimes mix up Acrolinx-related terms? Don't worry, you're not alone. Our glossary has your back. Get on board with our lingo here. Before you start looking at individual terms, get an overview of the products that make up Acrolinx.

Acrolinx Products

Acrolinx consists of a few key components. The Core Platform, for example, is the central part of Acrolinx. Acrolinx Integrations, on the other hand, connect to the Core Platform and let you check content wherever you create it. Whether you're new or are a seasoned user, read on to get a better understanding of the products that make up Acrolinx.

The Core Platform

The Core Platform is the heart of Acrolinx. It’s the central part of the Acrolinx package that helps you produce great content that's aligned with your goals and brand. It includes a Dashboard that opens in your Browser, and a Sidebar for your writers to use wherever they create content. The Dashboard is where you manage the whole Acrolinx process, from users to Terminology. 

Acrolinx Private Cloud always exclusively supports the newest Acrolinx releases. Some releases apply exclusively to Acrolinx Private Cloud customers. Private Cloud releases are the most frequent.

The combination of software and hardware that we use for Core Platform Cloud installations, and that we support for On-premise installations. It's a good solution for those who can't use Acrolinx Private Cloud for compliance reasons. In general, we recommend Private Cloud.

We've updated our terminology. We now call "On-premise" releases "Classic" releases. We've sunsetted support for Classic release technologies. We'll continue to support Classic releases for 18 months after their release date. This includes security updates and critical bug fixes only.


Acrolinx supports more than 50 authoring environments. You can use Acrolinx Integrations to connect an editor, platform, or tool to the Acrolinx Platform.

Acrolinx supports a range of partner-built integrations. Find out more about the Acrolinx Partner Program.

Extend the possibilities that you have within Acrolinx. For example, Emolinx is an App in the Acrolinx Sidebar that helps you see the emotional content of your words.

Targets Terms

Targets make it easier for you to set up Acrolinx for your content. This section of the Dashboard lets you define your content goals depending on your audience or content type. Before you get started with Targets, learn more about each of its components.

TermDefinitionRelevant Articles

A goal is an aspect of language that you want Acrolinx to focus on. You decide which goals you want to include in your Target and if they count toward the Acrolinx Score. For example, Tone is a goal, and so is Consistency.

Think: "I want to focus on Consistency and Inclusive Language, so I'll be sure to add these goals to my Target."

Get Started With Goals
Guideline Group

Each goal consists of guidelines. A guideline relates to a specific piece of guidance that Acrolinx provides (for example “Is this word spelled correctly?”). To make guidelines easier to find, Acrolinx organizes them into guideline groups (for example, “Spelling” and “Sentence Structure”).

Think: "Acrolinx picks up simple spelling mistakes and typos with the guidelines in the Spelling guideline group."


Each goal also comes with some presets. Presets are Acrolinx recommendations based on almost 20 years of experience in the field. You can rely on Acrolinx expertise. These presets help you set up the type of guidance you want from a goal so you don’t have to adjust all the guidelines yourself.

Think: "I can use the presets that meet my content needs."

Get Started With Goals

A Target is made up of goals, and a goal consists of guidelines. Acrolinx comes with goals for different content needs. When you create a Target, you select the goals that meet your content needs.

Think: "I create a Target to tell Acrolinx what type of guidance I want for a particular type of content."

If you're still working with Guidance Profiles, you'll see some areas of the Dashboard and the Sidebar writing guides labeled Target. This is because the user interface is designed to show the latest Acrolinx features.

Get Started With Targets
TargetsTargets make it easy to set up Acrolinx for your content. It’s a section in the Dashboard where you can define your content goals depending on your audience or content type. Targets

Other Terms

When you manage your process in the Acrolinx Dashboard, you'll interact a range of features in the Analytics, Terminology, and Guidance sections. Here are a few of the most common terms that you'll come across.

TermDefinitionRelevant Articles
Check Settings

The specific combination of guidance categories that Acrolinx provides for a given check. The check settings for a check can include any combination of Spelling, Grammar, Style, and tone of voice guidance. You can manage check settings for writers through Guidance Profiles.

Think: "Check settings determine the categories of guidance that I see in the Sidebar."

Checking Profile

Determines the type of guidance that writers see in the Sidebar. You define the language, Writing Guide, term sets, and check settings for a particular Checking Profile. Writers can then select that Checking Profile (called a Guidance Profile) from the Sidebar to assign their check settings.

Think: "I can define a Checking Profile in the Dashboard to share language and check settings across multiple users."

Checking Profiles

Content Fingerprint

A Content Recognition method. The Content Fingerprint lets Acrolinx recognize your content for you by looking at the written content itself. Set on a global level.

Think: "If my content frequently changes location and format, then I can use the Content Fingerprint method to let Acrolinx decide what is the same article based on my written content."

Define How You Want Acrolinx To Recognize Your Content
Content Groups

Content Groups let you create logical collections of your content that mirror how you think about your projects. For example, you might want to group all the content published on your blog or all the content from your marketing department. 

You can then view and compare aggregated metrics by Content Group. You can set a target score for each Content Group.

Think: "Content Groups help me separate and compare the different types of content that I manage."

Content Groups

Content Profile

Lets you define which parts of your content Acrolinx should read and which parts it should skip. You have a Content Profile for each type of content you want to check.

Think: "I define a Content Profile to make sure that Acrolinx reads the right parts of my content in the right ways."

Content Profiles

Content Recognition

The method Acrolinx uses to recognize of your content for Analytics.

Think: "The Content Recognition method I choose affects how my Analytics data is organized."

Define How You Want Acrolinx To Recognize Your Content
Content Reference

The default Content Recognition method. The Content Reference lets you define how Acrolinx should recognize your content using the document file path or some content-specific metadata. Set on a Content Profile level.

Think: "If each of my articles has a unique parameter (like a URL slug) that doesn't change, then Acrolinx can recognize my content using the Content Reference method."

Guidance Profile

Determines the type of guidance that writers see in the Sidebar. Writers can pick a Guidance Profile from the Sidebar to automatically set their language and check settings. An administrator manages Guidance Profiles centrally, so that writers who use the Sidebar can pick a Guidance Profile without getting bogged down in detailed settings.

If you have Checking Profiles enabled, then a Guidance Profile corresponds to a Checking Profile. This means there’s one Guidance Profile for each Checking Profile.

If you've disabled Checking Profiles, then your Guidance Profiles will correspond to your Writing Guides with all the check settings enabled.

Think: "I pick a Guidance Profile in the Sidebar to set my language and check settings."

Guidance Profiles

Term Discovery

Acrolinx discovers terms in your content that you can add to your terminology.

Writers can review and contribute terms discovered in their content using the Terminology Tab in the Sidebar.

The Term Discovery dashboard lets you review discovered terms and see where and how your writers are using them.

Think: "Term Discovery helps me update our terminology using our real written content."

Terminology Tab

Term Discovery Dashboard

Term Set

A collection of terms. A term set is a group of term domains.

Think: "Term Sets link my term domains to my Writing Guides."

Term Sets
Writing Guide

Part of your guidance package and designed by our linguists. Writing guides help you customize guidelines for each language and content type (for example, Marketing or UI Strings).

Think: "My writing guides let me tune the guidelines for Marketing and Product Content separately."

In some areas of the Dashboard and in the Sidebar, you won't see the term "writing guide" anymore. As Acrolinx moves on to Targets, the user interface will too. But don't worry if you're not there yet – you'll usually find your writing guides under the label Target.

Enable and Disable Guidelines