It Don’t Read, Babe!

Flesch FrontOn the heels of the previous blog, a cautionary tale about outsourcing, this brief post addresses the issue of readability.

The Flesch Reading Ease test rates text on a 100-point scale. The higher the score, the easier it is to understand the document. For most standard files, you want the score to be 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 Flesch Backnumber of sentences)  and ASW = average number of syllables per word (the number of syllables divided by the number of words).

The images on the left are for quick conversion and  remedy for any piece of writing that “fails” the Flesch test.

If you don’t want to do the math or just want another opinion, here is a free readability test tool.


About Bob McCarthy

Originally from the Northeast, I now call Southwest Florida home. I have been a professional copywriter and editor since 1979, both freelance and in house. I have had article published in regional, national and international magazines. Plus, a video for which I wrote the script won an industry award as Best Training Video.
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