How to get readability in word & improve readability of content

Readability definition

Let’s first understand what is readability?

Readability is the quality of written language that makes it easy to read and understand. It is the ease with which a reader can understand a written text.

The readability of text depends on its content (vocabulary and syntax) and its presentation ( font size, line height, character spacing, and line length). Readability is the measure of how easily a reader can distinguish individual letters or characters from each other.

Higher readability eases reading effort and speed for any reader, but it is especially important for those who do not have high reading comprehension. In readers with average or poor reading comprehension, raising the readability level of a text from mediocre to good can make the difference between success and failure of its communication goals

How to get readability in word

While you are writing a document, understanding and managing the readability can be a great differentiator for the content you write. There are two tests to measure readability- Flesch Reading Ease and Flesch-Kincaide Grade Level formulas. Microsoft word helps to can calculate your readability scores right within the program, and it’s super easy to set up. The higher the Flesch Reading Ease score, the easier it is for most people to understand the document. The Flesch-Kincaide Grade Level score represents the number of years of education generally required to understand the text

Microsoft word readability statistics-Steps to check out

Let’s now look at steps to check out readability

· Open your document in Word. Then click on the File menu > Options > Proofing tab 

as shown below

How to get readability in word-step 1

·

How to get readability in word-step 2

Under the “When correcting spelling and grammar in Word” heading, you’ll get a box that says “Show readability statistics.” Check this, then exit out of options and go back to your document.This is way how you turn on

How to get readability in word-step 3

Now, Go to the review tab and press spelling and grammar run a standard spelling and grammar check just like you would normally. You will then be able to see readability scores based on two tests: The first is the Flesch Reading Ease test, and the second is the Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level score.

How to get readability in word-step 4

· The higher the score on the Reading Ease test, the easier the document is to read. If your document is at least 60, it should be relatively easy to read. 

· The grade level is equivalent to the reading level of students. An 8, for example, would mean that the material is appropriate for an 8th grader. If you hit somewhere between 7 and 8, it should be very readable for the majority of people.

 

 

Readability calculator-Understanding readability scores with word

The two major variables in the readability score are the average number of syllables per word and words per sentence. The below sections explain how each test scores your file’s readability and what is a good readability score.

 

Flesch Reading Ease test

Here the rating on a 100-point scale. The higher the score, the easier it is to understand the document. The Ideal score here is between 60 and 70.

The formula for the Flesch Reading Ease score is:

206.835 – (1.015 x ASL) – (84.6 x ASW)

where:

ASL = average sentence length (the number of words divided by the number of sentences)

ASW = average number of syllables per word (the number of syllables divided by the number of words)

Flesch-Kincaid Readability test

Here the rating happens on a U.S. school grade level. For example, a score of 8.0 means that an eighth-grader can understand the document. The Ideal score here is approximately 7.0 to 8.0.

The formula for the Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level score is:

(.39 x ASL) + (11.8 x ASW) – 15.59

where:

ASL = average sentence length (the number of words divided by the number of sentences)

ASW = average number of syllables per word (the number of syllables divided by the number of words) 

 

How to improve readability of a word document

Now that you have seen how to check readability scores, let’s look at some tips to improve readability of a word document and how to improve on reading comprehension

So, if you are writing blogs for yourself or for a client, or for anything in between, you have probably heard of search engine optimization. Readability is the main factor in SEO and hence you need to do make your documents more readable. There is also a WordPress plugin called Yoast which will make your life easier. Yoast has a free version for you to check it out. There are 4 tips that you need to keep in mind to make sure that our works are as readable as possible.

1)Shorter the sweeter

Make shorter sentences while writing copy for the web. Aim to have sentences of 20 words or less. Make each of the points clear and concise. Cut out all the excess words from the sentences and make them short sweet and to the point

2) Use of passive voice

We tend to use Passive voice too much in our writing. 

Charlie kicked the ball

The ball was kicked by charlie

The first one sounds better right. So cut out the passive voice as much as possible from your writing. Tools like Grammarly are a great help in picking out passive voices 

3) Pay attention to your heading distribution.

 People like to scroll bullet points. If you have 10 tips, people want to know what those 10 tips are pretty much before they stop to read anything. So try to add in some sort of heading every 300 words or so Headings range from the h1, which is the title or the headline of the piece all the way down to like an h6, which is basically just a bolded text. enable readers to get the gist of basically everything without actually having to read the entire thing

4) Make use of conversational tone.

 let’s just be honest, nobody wants to read a lecture. Try and make your post engaging and informative. Let your personality shine through your text. Not everything has to be so rigid and stiff. Make it like you’re welcoming over one of your best friends for coffee and speaking to him

You will get plenty of other tips out there to help you out with your readability, in order to improve readability, one must avoid long sentences and using passive voice.Try to keep short and sweet sentences using active voice. Distributing proper headings throughout the entire post, as well as using a conversational tone, are four tips that are definitely going to help. 

What are some of the tips and tricks that you use to make your stuff more readable? Any tips that I missed out on today that you would love to share with me. Do let me know in your comments

if you have a child and are looking to teach him how to read , then do check this out

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