As a writer, it’s important not just to considercarefully what you say, but how it is said by you. To communicate effectively, it isn’t enough to have well organized ideas expressed in complete and coherent sentences and paragraphs. One must also look at the style, tone and clarity of his/her writing, and adapt these elements to the audience that is reading. Again, analyzing an individual’s audience and purpose is the key to effectiveness that is writing. In order to select the most reliable language, the writer must look at the objective associated with document, the context in which it really is being written, and who can be reading it.
Characteristics of Effective Language
Concrete language includes descriptions which create tangible images with details the reader can visualize. Abstract language is vague and obscure, and does not bring to mind specific images that are visual. Consider the two sets of statements below. The statement at the very top is abstract, but the statements become increasingly concrete and specific toward the bottom.
He could be a roommate that is bad is lazy and discourteous
He is untidy and unclean
He doesn’t tidy up their own messes
He leaves his dirty dishes from the kitchen counter
Your relationship with John is unacceptable
You do not go along well with John
You and John have plenty of arguments you and John too insult each other much
You and John call one another derogatory names
Notice exactly how much more beneficial the statements become since the language becomes more concrete and specific. The statements at the top, which are far more abstract, can be interpreted in many possible ways, and then leave many questions answered. The statements at the bottom, that are more concrete, are less available to interpretations that are multiple.
A hallmark of effective writers could be the capacity to express the specified message in as few words as you can. Good writers, simply put, use language which can be straightforward and to-the-point. Look at the examples that are following.
(1) It is widely discussed by employees that lots of of these is going to be forced to change jobs and take on new responsibilities when the merger takes place involving the two companies.
(2) before carefully deciding about whether or not the person on trial is guilty or innocent in this situation, the members of the jury must be certain to carefully think of, ponder and reflect on most of the important and relevant testimony in the case.
Notice how long-winded these sentences are, and just how easily they could be simplified and shortened. A significant part of revising and editing involves re-phrasing sentences to get rid of excessive wordiness. One good way to reduce wordiness would be to eliminate redundant words or phrases. Consider example one above. The phrases “to alter jobs” and “take on new responsibilities” are redundant, and may be combined into one short phrase to be expressed more concisely.
Consider example two above. The phrase “. should be certain to carefully think of, ponder and think about. ” contains three straight ways of saying the thing that is same. This sentence could possibly be improved by using only one associated with the phrases that are key “. to reflect on. “
A way that is second reduce wordiness would be to eliminate “filler” words which serve no purpose within the sentence. Consider example one above. Replace the phrase “. once the merger takes place between your two companies” with “. when the two companies merge.” Consider example two above. Notice the wordiness that is excessive the next phrase: “Before making the decision about perhaps the person on trial is guilty or innocent in this instance . ” This sentence could simply read: “Before determining the defendant’s guilt or innocence. “
Familiar language is that which the readers easily recognize and understand on a regular basis because they use it. The most important functions of language is always to build “homophily” or a feeling of commonality with one’s readers. Language which will be foreign and unfamiliar towards the reader tends to emphasize the differences between writer and reader, and helps make the message difficult to understand. The message is likely to have more impact by using language that is familiar to the reader.
Think about the examples that are following.
An assignment provided to a course of business students by their philosophy professor:
“The presently assigned paper necessitates an eloquently articulated analysis associated with the Existentialist perspective when it comes to living that is contemporary. You really need to adumbrate the points which represent the sine qua non of the analysis.”
A letter provided for senior high school students warning them of this risks of an unhealthy diet:
“Individuals who maintain a diet of high fat content are exposed to an increased danger of developing atherosclerosis, which will be a buildup of body fat from the inner walls of the arteries. This problem can reduce or cut from the flow of blood into the arteries serving the most important organs for the body. This may result in poor health.”
Both in examples above, the language which is used is unfamiliar towards the readers. The message loses its impact as a result.
Precise and Clear Language
The utilization of appropriate language is a matter that is tricky this is of words is relative and situational. In other words, words may be interpreted in numerous ways by each person in various situations. For this reason, it is essential to choose language which is as precise and clear as possible. The more precise and clear one’s use of language becomes, the fewer the number of possible interpretations for an email. Think about the following words. What numerical value would you assign to each of those? If something is “probable what percentage regarding the right time does it occur? P>
Would other people assign the value that is same these words as you did? In fact, the number of values varies greatly because these terms are relative: they could mean various things to different people in various situations. How could one become more precise in his/her usage of these terms?
Consider the examples below. Observe that these terms can vary widely in the meaning to differing people. The way that is best to make use of such relative terms, then, would be to compare them to something concrete and “known” to the reader. An expensive car?” is best answered with a comparison: “Compared to that Honda, the Acura is expensive for example: “Is that Acura. In comparison to that Lexus, it really is inexpensive.”
Look at the examples that are following. Note the potential confusion or ambiguity in these phrases.
(1) Why the student body should continue in this state of apathy is not understandable.
(2) Our student body is dull and slack-minded.
(3) The practice and theory of politics are studied in the classroom but habits that are political campus usually do not appear to take advantage of such labor.
(4) he is an interesting individual.
(5) it is hard to estimate the sheer number of people affected by AIDS.
All the following are actual headlines printed in newspapers. Notice their double meaning.
(1) Include your young ones when Baking Cookies
(2) Safety Experts Say School Buss Passengers should be Belted
(3) Bank Drive-in Window Blocked by Board
(4) Killer Sentenced to Die for Second amount of time in Ten Years
(5) Eye Drops Off Shelf
In short, it is advisable to consider carefully about your range of words and their interpretations that are potential. To communicate effectively, precise and clear language is essential.