What is readability?
Readability is a measure of how easy a piece of text is to read. It can include elements of complexity, familiarity, legibility and typography. Readability formulas usually look at factors like sentence length, syllable density and word familiarity as part of their calculations.
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The benefits of readability
Readability has a host of benefits for your writing. It saves time and money as well as boosting profitability and increasing engagement.
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The history of readability
The history of readability has its roots in education. Its development over the years is connected to technological and consumer rights change.
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Flesch Reading Ease and the Flesch Kincaid Grade Level
Rudolf Flesch created the most well-known and widely-used readability formulas. Flesch Reading Ease gives a score out of 100. Flesch Kincaid converts the readability score to a US education grade. Flesch scores can be applied to any type of content.
SMOG estimates the U.S. grade level required to understand the text. It is considered the gold standard formula in healthcare.
Gunning Fog Index
Gunning Fog estimates the U.S. education level required to understand the text. It can be particularly useful for researchers writing papers.
Automated Readability Index
ARI assesses the U.S. grade level required to read a piece of text. It is best suited to technical writing.
Spache is a specialist formula designed for elementary age children. It can be used for texts up to fourth-grade level.
New Dale Chall
New Dale Chall is a specialist formula designed for elementary age children. It can ensure a text is suitable for fourth-graders.
Powers Sumner Kearl
Powers Sumner is a specialist formula designed for elementary age children. It is best fr children between second and fourth grade.
Raygor is a graph-based readability formula. It calculates the US grade level of a text. It is best used for middle-school education.
Coleman Liau Index
Coleman-Liau is a readability formula which shows the reading level of a text. It is best used for professional documents.
Fry is a formula used to calculate the U.S. grade level required to understand a piece of text. Its use is wide-ranging but is particularly useful in education.
IELTS determines English language proficiency. Our IELTS test is useful for ensuring your writing is accessible for ESL readers.
CEFR is designed to analyse language skills. It can be used to reflect on the global accessibility of your text.
Lix and Rix
The Lix formula gives a difficulty score. The Rix output is a U.S. grade level. Both can be used to test the readability of several non-English languages.
The Lensear Write Readability Formula
Lensear Write determines writability as well as readability and it focuses on writing style. It's useful in government but can be applied to a variety of texts.
The FORCAST Readability Formula
The FORCAST formula determines a readability grade level. It was originally formulated for training material. It is most useful for technical writing.