Toolkit Part 7: Using readability formulas

This page links to the download for Toolkit Part 7, Using readability formulas: A cautionary note.  This part covers the following topics:

  • Introduction
    • Background on the Toolkit
    • What are "readability formulas"?
  • Why be cautious about using readability formulas?
    • Reason for caution 1:  Readability formulas ignore most factors that contribute to ease of reading and comprehension.
    • Reason for caution 2:  Grade level scores tend to be unreliable.
    • Reason for caution 3:  Grade level scores are less precise than they sound and prone to misinterpretation.
    • Reason for caution 4:  Imposing a grade level requirement has the potential to do harm.
  • Recommendations for using readability formulas
    • Recommendation 1:  Do not use readability formulas to assess overall suitability.
    • Recommendation 2:  Pick your formula and method carefully.
    • Recommendation 3:  Interpret reading grade level scores broadly as indicating a general range of difficulty.
    • Recommendation 4:  Report grade level scores in ways that acknowledge their narrow scope and limitations.
  • Instructions for using readability formulas
    • Instructions for using the Fry method
    • Instructions for using the SMOG

To view Toolkit Part 7, click the download listed below.  You are also allowed to save or print a copy of this download from your personal computer.

Page Last Modified:
03/16/2012 06:32 PM