Using Precise Language & Vocabulary in Informative Texts

Instructor: Rachel Noorda
Writing informative texts can be difficult because you want to be as clear as possible so that your reader understands what you are trying to say. This lesson discusses how precise language and vocabulary will make your writing clearer.

Defining Precise Language and Vocabulary

Have you ever tried to explain something to someone, and you felt that your message was completely misunderstood? If you are writing down information and you want to make sure that the reader understands what you are trying to say, then you will want to make sure that you use precise language and vocabulary.

Being precise in your language means choosing the most appropriate, most specific word so that your message is clear and there is less of a chance that your reader will misunderstand you. For example, say that you were writing a how-to informative text to tell readers how to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. In giving instructions on how to get the peanut butter onto the bread, you could use the word 'put' to tell how you get the peanut butter on the bread, but a more appropriate and specific word could be 'spread' because it tells the reader that the knife you had told them to use earlier in the text will be moving back and forth to spread the peanut butter, not just plop a big dollop of peanut butter on the bread.

Spread is a more precise word than put
peanut

How to Use Precise Language

An informative text is a text that conveys information to the reader. As already explained, precise language can be useful in making your informative text as clear as possible, so that the reader will understand your message. Here are some tips for using precise language and improving the clarity of your informative writing:

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