Do you write or prepare content for online courses?
Being aware of the readability of text destined for online students is an important consideration when writing and sourcing readings for online courses.
The Flesch-Kincaid readability test to your aid: and it's in Word
The Flesch-Kincaid readability test is designed to indicate comprehension difficulty when reading a passage of contemporary academic English and is commonly used to assessed the readability of text.
Microsoft Word has the ability to calculate the readability of documents using the Flesch-Kincaid readability scale but this needs to be activated.
How to enable Readability statistics in Word
To enable ‘readability statistics’ open Word
Step one: choose Word from the Finder menu > Preferences
Step two: Click on Spelling and Grammar
Step three: Show readability statistics
Using the readability test in Word
To access the readability statistics, run the ‘Spelling and Grammar’ checker by going to: Tools > Spelling and Grammar.
Note: First you must run the Spelling and Grammar checker. The readability score is displayed once the spelling and grammar check is complete.
Notice, there are two Flesch-Kincaid results here in Word. The best result to work on is the Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease Score. The recommendation is to aim for around 60–70%. On the other hand, Word (at this stage) provides a false score for the Flesch-Kincaid Grade Level.
Nick Ford is a motivated and passionate educator with nine years experience in ICT professional development for educators. He has interests in educational research methods (especially behaviour analysis research methodology), the professional learning of teachers and teacher educators, and the use of ICT's for teaching and learning. Nicholas is a regular speaker at national conferences.
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- Readability: a simple solution for online course writers - June 28, 2011