RE: Flesch Reading Ease scale

Subject: RE: Flesch Reading Ease scale
From: "Locke, David" <dlocke -at- bindview -dot- com>
To: TECHWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 22 Mar 2000 10:20:45 -0600

Grammar checkers provide a wealth of statistical scoring systems. Flesch was
one of the first. It does have a weakness in that it will score "Basic
English," a former movement, correctly. But, if you start using normal
grammar, your scores will no longer coorelate.

I used to base decisions about editorial need on something called the
strength score. It correlated well with my writing style.

The best tool for this kind of analysis was Corporate Voice. It analyzed
your sample documents. Then, it could tell you how your current document
deviated from the statistical envelope derived from the sample documents.
The analysis could reach down to individual sentences. It's packed away
somewhere. And, the company may not be in existence anymore.

Grammar checkers and analysis tools can be used as long as you understand
the formulas, and the assumptions underlying the formulas. There are
weaknesses in any approach that reduces a whole into things less than a
whole.

David W. Locke


-----Original Message-----
From: Lorraine Kiewiet [mailto:Lorraine -dot- Kiewiet -at- answers -dot- com]
Sent: Tuesday, March 21, 2000 3:44 PM
To: TECHWR-L
Subject: Flesch Reading Ease scale


Please help with an update on the meaning of this measurement.

For standard documents, I understand that we're supposed to aim at above 50%
reading ease and at about 8th grade level. With today's Internet terms,
newly-coined words, and so forth, how well does this measurement hold up?

Thanks for any insight, pointers to articles to read, etc. etc.

--Lorraine


Lorraine Kiewiet
Technical Communications Manager
Answers.com, Inc.
234 E. Colorado Blvd., Suite 450
Pasadena, CA 91101
Main number: 626.817.9889
Voice: 626.817.5656
eFax: 801.760.6131
Answers.com - Handle more questions. <http://www.answers.com/>

"There's not much to say about the period except that most writers don't
reach it soon enough." - William Zinsser


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