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Topic 10: Making Your Writing Easy to Read

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Readability

 

Word Options

There are many measures you can use to determine how readable a document is.

If you use Microsoft Word, you can set it up to display readability statistics when you spell-check a document.

To do so in Word 2003:

  1. Select Tools > Options.
  2. Click the Spelling & Grammar tab.
  3. Select Check grammar when spelling.
  4. Select Show readability statistics.
  5. Click OK.

To do so in Word 2007:

  1. Click the Office button Office button in the top-right corner of the Word window.
  2. Click Word Options Word Options .
  3. Click Proofing.
  4. Select Check grammar when spelling.
  5. Select Show readability statistics.
  6. Click OK.

Microsoft Word reports readability results based on two tests:

  • The Flesch Reading Ease test rates text on a 100-point scale. The higher the score, the easier it is to understand the document.
  • The Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level test rates text on a U.S. school grade level. For example, a score of 8.0 means that a 13-year-old 8th grader should understand the document.