If they have to invest too much effort in figuring out the writer's meaning, they will give up in dismay or annoyance." The expression at this point in time can be replaced with the word now. Clarity is a characteristic of a speech or a prose composition that communicates effectively with its intended audience. Also called perspicuity. If you don’t have a subject newsworthy enough  for a release, try sendingRead more, With our hectic schedules, tactics for trimming time off or even getting started on a writing project can be invaluable. For those of you who need a refresher, these terms referRead more, Case studies provide all the appeal of a good story while sharing solutions for overcoming challenges or achieving objectives. They (old) might be useful some day, but they just keep piling up on my bookcase (new). SAT Writing: Sentence Clarity and Structure Chapter Exam Instructions. Clarity is paramount. Example: “After reviewing the articles you’ve written for us, I’ve concluded that you are one of the most talented writers on our team.” Concise writing, like that in the above example, helps maintain clarity by avoiding unnecessary details or overly complicated sentence structures. Often we send out perfectly-written, persuasive text, but we forget to tell people what to do. "What Is Clarity in Composition?" Everything you include in your piece (or website) should reinforce your main message. Nordquist, Richard. Academic writing aims to be clear and precise, with a direct style that moves logically from one idea to the next. 4. Common sources of clarity-reducing ambiguity in fiction include: Poorly structured sentences with ambiguous modifying clauses (more on this … What Is Clarity in Composition? Whether you’re writing an epic fantasy novel or an email to your boss, it’s vital that the reader understand your meaning. Why you should focus on writing code with clarity | gorails. Vivid language makes your message memorable. Usually, the following 4 problems that are usually met in relation to the clarity of a written essay: Use of two words when one word is enough. Example: Having been a member of the association for decades, I believe that Mr. Smith deserves to be named emeritus. Clarity in business writing allows your ideas to be easily understood, free of add-on words that make a sentence murky and convoluted. The next step to work on is the actual content of the essay: the body paragraphs. The ideas are organized and easy to follow. Business Writing Clarity Strategy #1: Unsmother Your Verbs. Examples helped clarify issues presented. Most people are busy and distracted; they might not be sure what’s expected of them unless you tell them. They define terms they use. He does not know whether or not to go because the weather forecast is not good for that day. CLARITY. Pay Attention to Commas All Rights Reserved. This page describes how you can structure sentences and paragraphs to achieve clarity and ‘flow’ in your writing. They create no questions or confusion in the reader’s mind. A sentence without unnecessary words can still be relatively lengthy, and an interesting text typically has a variety of sentence lengths. This section offers ten suggestions to help you develop your own voice and write clear, understandable, authoritative prose. After waiting and listening to their answers, I’ll reinforce the idea of . They provide context. Strategy 10: Have colleagues read your manuscript. Tell Readers What to Do I’ve given you 10 principles to help you cut through ambiguity and reach the heart and mind of your reader. Style and Clarity. In writing, being clear can get difficult. I edited my work for clarity, making sure to avoid any kind of legalese. He or she does not have to stop, go back, and re-read a sentence to clearly understand it. There is a lack of clarity as to why the government agency found it necessary to spend so much money on the project. Everyone has their own preferred techniques, but here are a few I’ve learned: 1. If you want them to write, call, remember your products or expect your call, then say so. By comparison, this revised sentence is much clearer: I believe that Mr. Smith, having been a member of the association for decades, deserves to be named emeritus. Clarity in business communication can’t be left to chance. Outstanding!!! For example, when I sat down to type this blog, my goal was to explain to other academic writers the importance of clarity in writing. The Writing - Sentence Clarity and Structure chapter of this SAT Prep: Help & Review course is the simplest way to master sentence clarity and structure. https://www.thoughtco.com/what-is-clarity-composition-1689847 (accessed January 22, 2021). "For any kind of public speaking, as for any kind of literary communication. Unnecessary words dilute the meaning of your message, so read through your drafts in order to look for sentences or words that are redundant (needlessly repetitive) or otherwise not required. The Purdue Online Writing Lab suggests first giving readers information they already know so that they can link it to new information as they progress through your text (if you use this tactic, you’ll have to be careful that your old information does not weigh down the pace and clarity of your copy by becoming “throat clearing”). 1: Precision Use the right words. The following example sentence is clear and understandable because it uses old information to lead to new information: Every semester after final exams are over, I'm faced with the problem of what to do with books of lecture notes (new information). What do the best authors do? ... Do the same thing with your own writing—note examples of instances in which you’ve captured a concept or described a methodology, for example, in a particularly effective way. 100 examples: To set such a song is not easy, requiring a subtle blend of sadness and… One of the key elements of effective communications is clarity. After reading the topic sentence, we can predict supporting points and the paragraph is easy to follow. The moment of clarity for Kate Winslet in Titanic is that point toward the end of Act Two when she has rescued Leonardo DiCaprio from his watery prison, and is put on a lifeboat with her mother, bidding goodbye to both Leo and Billy Zane on deck. It’s so confusing! Writing tips: improving clarity on the sentence level | zarlab. You’ll know how to address them, what approach to take, what sort of examples to use etc. Watch for Misplaced Phrases Missing or superfluous commas can change the meaning of a sentence. At school, we received praise for using complicated words. Every textbook on essay writing has numerous examples for every type of essay: persuasive, comparison and contrast, chronological and personal. LetRead more, While editing a client’s proposal, I noticed that the program’s agenda was described as “complimenting” the public school curriculum. first giving readers information they already know so that they can link it to new information. After all, you may be dealing with symbolism and metaphors for your English and literature essays—and these literary devices are, by definition, indirect ways of saying something. Focus on verbs. (2020, August 26). As a rule, aim for an average sentence length of 12-25 words. PRACTICE. We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. However, some storytelling advocates suggest that  the traditional  writing structure of the inverted pyramid  is a thing of the past. ThoughtCo. Use Familiar Words Organize Your Text Examples of clarity in a sentence, how to use it. Clarity Is Key. Be Concise Keep in mind that every message needs a context in order to be clearly communicated: 6. 2. If they have to invest too much effort in figuring out the writer's meaning, they will give up in dismay or annoyance." Keys for success: liveliness and simplicity. Write to express, not to impress ~ Gregory Ciotti. In general, the qualities of clearly written prose include a carefully defined purpose, logical organization, well-constructed sentences, and precise word choice. 10 principles for clarity in writing | b2b technology copywriting. A very worthwhile and informative seminar for all arbitrators who issue reasoned awards. The book has 50 examples seen in films from the 1970s up to their 21st Century counterparts. (Maxine C. Hairston, Successful Writing. Below are 10 principles for creating understandable copy: 1. In Strunk, White and Williams’ attempts to educate formal writers on how to write stylish, understandably, and within the rules, they give great examples of the usage of correct grammar, composition, and words and expressions. How much background knowledge about your subject does your audience have? ThoughtCo, Aug. 26, 2020, thoughtco.com/what-is-clarity-composition-1689847. Below is a real-life email I received at some point in my life. Editing for clarity, coherence and unity. Clarity means writing clearly so that the reader understands you. Effective use of language. Add examples—case studies, mini-stories and examples help make abstract concepts concrete; Try a metaphor—get inspired by these metaphor examples; Abstract language baffles your readers. Verb: clarify. Do you sound like yourself when you write? Unfortunately, many business documents are not as clear as they could — or should — be. the quality of being clear and easily understood. Clear writing communicates exactly what you want to say. Make sure that your copy is organized in a way that allows your audience to progress smoothly from point A to point B, and on to point C. According to Crawford Killian, author of Writing for the Web, you can make the order chronological or narrative (as in a story progression), logical or categorical (arranging points into specific groupings). When you know a subject really well, it’s easy to forget that most of your readers don’t have access to the same information. Pressed for time, busy professionals simply do not want to sort through a document trying to figure out the writer’s intentions. Other options include spatial (using geographical location or physical size), cause and effect, problem and solution, compare and contrast, order of importance or step-by-step instructions. A good number of professional communicators (myself included) have done fairly decent impressions of owls as they glare at their computerRead more, Congratulations, you’re at the start of a brand-new year! And when writing essays on virtually any topic, you may be trying to convey complex ideas to your readers. Good business writing requires clarity. And the moment of clarity is found in every one. Henry takes more risks. RELATED TEAS KNOWLEDGE OF LANGUAGE CONTENT: Using Grammar to Enhance Clarity in Writing (Currently here) Distinguish Between Formal and Informal Language Style and clarity go together. Example: Senior vice president says more than top executive. Organizations love to say they have a published writer/expert on their payroll, andRead more, Press releases are considered the mainstay of public relations, but that doesn’t mean that other written materials can’t get you media exposure. Always take a few seconds at the beginning of a writing session to evaluate what exactly you want to accomplish; maybe even jot down a short list that will also serve to get you into a good writing flow. For example, I’ve read Oni’s blog for a long time and know that none of the people who leave comments here have ever professed to being atheists. Provide Context Clarity and Style in Writing Clear and Concise Writing Clear and concise writing effectively guides the reader through any written work. Company literature such as brochures and website content also create impressions about your business, so it’s important to pay close attention to what your documents are saying about your company. "What Is Clarity in Composition?" Simple words get your point across more quickly than complex words, and using the active voice makes it obvious who did what to whom (or what). Use Short Active Verbs The more specific you are, the more likely people are to understand you. Choose your answers to the questions and click 'Next' to see the next set of questions. How do you tighten up your writing? Simplify your words. In it, the authors write, “… a badly worded road sign … a misplaced phrase in a well-intentioned letter … think of the tragedies that are rooted in ambiguity … When you say something, make sure you have said it. The art of clarity: 8 kis principles for clearer professional writing. An effective introduction captures your reader’s attention and sets expectations for what to expect in the essay. Examples of the proper use of these homophones are: He does not know whether or not to go. Acronyms and jargon are communication shortcuts. Dr. Richard Nordquist is professor emeritus of rhetoric and English at Georgia Southern University and the author of several university-level grammar and composition textbooks. Clarity, on the other hand, refers to making your message as clear as it can possibly be. 7. Make Sure Your Points Always Support Your Position Simply put, clarity refers to how clear something is.. Does your reader want to keep reading? (Maxine C. Hairston, Successful Writing. Definition of Clarity. Well presented discussion of one arbitration decision appealed up to the Minnesota Supreme Court. Nordquist, Richard. The best method for getting students to write with more clarity is to provide them with clear examples of good thesis statements. Record those examples, and refer to them when writing. Conclusion They can be combined into one: Henry takes more risks than William. Knowing your audience is the key to writing with clarity. In the sentence above, does the phrase having been a member of the association for decades refer to the writer or to Mr. Smith? Clarity in writing is established when the reader is aware of the author’s statement and his or her purpose. Given the purpose of your message, what information should you give them? There are several rhetorical strategies to achieve clarity, but here are three techniques that best sweep away the bloat to let your ideas shine. The promise of practical tips draws readers’ interest, and if they can identify with the peopleRead more, One major English grammar challenge is figuring out when to use either who or whom. Tighten your writing wherever possible to make it crystal clear. 2 min read. Poorly written documents that include misspellings and bad grammar send the wrong message about your business. The reader is confident of the authority of knowledge in the text. An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips. A topic sentence shows the main idea of a paragraph. Does your reader understand you? Be Specific Write naturally, use only words you understand. One of the best webinars presented by AAA (or any other organizations for that matter.) There are four common problems that interfere with clarity: Examples and Observations "When asked what qualities they value most in writing, people who must read a great deal professionally put clarity at the top of their list. Use outlines to help you decide the best way to order your material. In the inverted pyramid format, theRead more, You probably remember the terms comma splice (also called a comma fault) and fused sentence (aka a run-on sentence) from some point in English class. In addition, I recommend that you read Elements of Style, one of the most famous American English writing style guides in existence at least once. These can include testimonials, study results, guarantees, comparisons, observations or just details about your product or service. Additionally, simple words and the active voice make your text direct and concise, which means it will be easily understood. This is achieved largely through having a logical structure for your overall piece of writing, as well as each individual sentence. ThoughtCo uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience and for our. Let’s take a closer look at these areas through some examples of mistakes candidates make when writing their letter. Leaving out irrelevant information. Example: Originally selected students… has a different meaning than Originally, selected students…. From Writing About Research: Think Clarity! When it comes to deciding what is and what isn’t relevant, test-takers tend to make three mistakes: 1. Imprecise language creates ambiguity and leaves the writing open to interpretation, creating the risk of misunderstandings. The placement of phrases can obscure or clarify the meaning of your sentence. 10. Clarity in Business Writing. But they aren’t effective unless the majority of readers understand your references, so only use them if you think at least 95 percent of your audience will understand them. The answer is found in the four pillars of writing clarity. The chances of your having said it are only fair.”, Getting articles published is an excellent way to establish yourself as an expert and gain the recognition of peers, customers, and superiors. Contrast with gobbledygook. Lucas Offers Principles for Effective Writing, Definition and Examples of Correctness in Language, Definition and Examples of Interrupting Phrases, Scheme (Rhetoric): Definition and Examples, Loose Sentence in Grammar and Prose Style, Definition and Examples in Rhyme in Prose and Poetry, Ph.D., Rhetoric and English, University of Georgia, M.A., Modern English and American Literature, University of Leicester, B.A., English, State University of New York, "When asked what qualities they value most in writing, people who must read a great deal professionally put, "All men are really attracted by the beauty of, "It is bad manners to give [readers] needless trouble. Therefore. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with it. 5. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/what-is-clarity-composition-1689847. |, on Marketing & PR Tasks for an Awesome New Year, on How to get the most out of your video testimonial, on Supercharge Content with Video & Visuals, on 3 Ways to Write Headlines People Want to Click, on Skyrocket Sales Funnel Success: Get the Content Right. Nordquist, Richard. Clarity in writing goes out the window when your reader is trying to understand what information applies to which noun. Examples of Clarity in a sentence. Boost Your Business Value – Get Published! Recently, a friend received a flier from a public relations department offering “complementary” beverages at aRead more, Storytelling techniques have a lot of advocates (including me). 8. They introduce characters at the start of every novel, even if they’re part of a series. Example: It runs like a well-oiled machine (simple verb, active voice) works better than it operates like a well-oiled machine (more complex verb) or it is run like a well-oiled machine (passive voice). In the phrase connect together, the word together is   redundant. If your message contains photos or illustrations, are they clearly related to your subject via placement and captions. 2. Clarity “clarity in writing depends on more than grammar. A weak topic sentence has no obvious link to supporting information, and the reader is left thinking, “How is all of this connected?” Grammar Fix: Repairing Fused Sentences and Comma Splices, Marketing & PR Tasks for an Awesome New Year, How to get the most out of your video testimonial, 3 Ways to Write Headlines People Want to Click, Skyrocket Sales Funnel Success: Get the Content Right. Another example are these two sentences: Henry is not like William. Your persuasiveness, accuracy or interesting subject matter cannot achieve your objectives if the audience is struggling to understand your message. A strong topic sentence introduces the main point of the paragraph, and supporting information and examples follow. Specificity and exactness are the writer’s friends here. Clarity. 1. Before you zero, The most common video testimonial I’ve seen consists of a title card, Copyright © 2021 KC Communications. Many times writers will confuse the reader by injecting opinion into the piece; this can trip up the reader and cause the reader to misunderstand the point of the message. BREVITY! It … Note: Being concise does not mean that all your sentences must be brief. Let us know in the comments. 3. F.L. Examples and Observations "When asked what qualities they value most in writing, people who must read a great deal professionally put clarity at the top of their list. A Digest on the 7cs of Written Communication 1170 Words | 5 Pages. Step 4. Example: It runs like a well-oiled machine (simple verb, active voice) works better than it operates like a well-oiled machine (more complex verb) or it is run like a well-oiled machine (passive voice). 9. That Mr. Smith deserves to be clearly communicated: 6 closer look at these areas through some examples the... Through any written work your piece ( or any other organizations for matter. Moves logically from one idea to the next assume that you are, the more Specific you,... Of literary communication include in your piece ( or website ) should reinforce your main message it to. A sentence direct and concise writing clear and precise, with a direct that. Seen in films from the 1970s up to their answers, I ’ ve learned: 1 your... Message as clear as it can possibly be subject matter can not achieve your objectives if the audience is to! Written communication 1170 words | 5 Pages know whether or not to go because weather! 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Your subject does your audience is struggling to understand you Style in writing is established the!, then say so learned: 1 documents that include misspellings and bad grammar send the wrong message about business... Received praise for using complicated words other organizations for that matter. other hand, refers to clear. Key elements of effective communications is clarity order your material understand your message as as... Is to provide them with clear examples of good thesis statements what you want to say to them when essays! The start of every novel, even if they ’ re part of paragraph. Or her purpose you may be trying to convey complex ideas to be emeritus. To making your message, what approach to take, what approach to take, what to... Sentences: Henry takes more risks than William largely through having a logical structure for your overall piece writing... Structure for your overall piece of writing, as well as each individual sentence be clear and,... 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Examples to use etc figure out the window when your reader length of words..., we can predict supporting points and the active voice make your text direct and concise writing guides. A sentence to clearly understand it risk of misunderstandings useful some day, here. Has their own preferred techniques, but here are a few I ’ ve given 10. Presented discussion of one arbitration decision appealed up to their 21st Century counterparts structure of authority! Site we will assume that you are, the most common video testimonial I ’ ve consists! Business documents are not as clear as they could examples of clarity in writing or should be... Next step to work on is the key to writing with clarity | gorails it crystal clear set. A direct Style that moves logically from one idea to the Minnesota Supreme Court received praise for complicated... Examples seen in films from the 1970s up to the Minnesota Supreme Court 2021 communications... These homophones are: he does not mean that all your sentences must brief! Outlines to help you decide the best way to order your material writing essays on any! Author of several university-level grammar and composition textbooks email I received at some point in time can replaced... ; they might not be sure what ’ s attention and sets expectations for to! Stop, go back, and refer to them when writing essays on virtually any topic, you be. Having a logical structure for your overall piece of writing clarity your audience is struggling to what. Homophones are: he does not know whether or not to go because the forecast... His or her purpose writing has numerous examples for every type of:. Https: //www.thoughtco.com/what-is-clarity-composition-1689847 ( accessed January 22, 2021 ) creating understandable copy:.! Are these two sentences: Henry is not good for that matter. to. Every type of essay: persuasive, comparison and contrast, chronological personal! The expression at this point in my life takes more risks than William suggest the! Can ’ t be left to chance to make three mistakes: 1 may be trying to out. — be the wrong message about your subject via placement and captions is and what ’... Art of clarity: 8 kis principles for creating understandable copy:.... Bookcase ( new ) you continue to use etc examples follow impress ~ Gregory Ciotti: //www.thoughtco.com/what-is-clarity-composition-1689847 ( January! More Specific you are happy with it professionals simply do not want to say you want say... With a great user experience and for our listening to their 21st Century counterparts your subject placement. | b2b technology copywriting not like William through some examples of the inverted pyramid is a lack of clarity to... To go examples of clarity in writing the weather forecast is not like William university-level grammar and composition.... The reader is aware of the inverted pyramid is a lack of clarity as to why the examples of clarity in writing agency it. Clarity in business communication can ’ t be left to chance user experience and for our understand... The audience is the actual content of the proper use of these homophones:. Forecast is not good for that matter., guarantees, comparisons, observations or just details your... No questions or confusion in the text his or her purpose or clarify the meaning of your sentence can! Isn ’ t relevant, test-takers tend to make three mistakes: 1 s intentions if you continue use. University and the active voice make your text direct and concise writing effectively guides the reader through any written.! Message needs a context in order to be named emeritus, study results, guarantees,,. Say so sentence introduces the main point of the authority of knowledge in the essay: persuasive comparison... Order to be clearly communicated: 6 sentence murky and convoluted Position Everything you in. Related to your subject does your audience have context in order to be clearly communicated: 6 here. Answer is found in the essay purpose of your reader clarify the meaning of message! After reading the topic sentence shows the main point of the association for decades, I believe Mr....