Author Topic: Being Concise  (Read 2108 times)


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Being Concise
« on: September 14, 2013, 10:29:15 AM »
Being concise is to write exactly what you have to, avoiding redundancy. Do not waffle, do not be evasive. In formal writing it is a sign of a good writing style to write as few words as possible to get to the point. It is one of the reasons why instructors impose word limits on written assignments.

It is recommended to apply the following techniques to reduce overflow of unnecessary words in a paper:

- Make your points straight away: “Firstly, ...”, “Secondly…”, “Finally…”

- Replace phrases with single words: “Smith(2006) agreed, but considered the fact that some managers preferred to have longer, all-day meetings.” instead of “Smith (2006) also believed this to be true, but took into consideration the fact that some managers also preferred to have long meetings that took all day”

Avoiding words with the same meaning: “Records” instead of “past records”, "Separate” instead of "separate out”, “In retrospect” instead of “looking back in retrospect”.

Omit unnecessary words: “lowering the rope” instead of “lowering the rope down”, “measuring the job” instead of “measuring up the job”, “because” instead of “due to the fact that”.

Avoid saying the same thing twice: “The farmer sheared the sheep and removed all their wool” could simply be replaced with “The farmer sheared the sheep”
Avoid clumsy sentences with extra words that detract from the point: “There are several of the soldiers, each with their guns and ammunition, who gathered at the gates of the camp before dawn.” A better way would be to say: “Several of the soldiers, each with their own guns and ammunition, gathered at the camp gates before dawn.”
« Last Edit: January 25, 2014, 08:59:32 AM by michael »