Medical Writing Writing Matters Pleasing the reader by pleasing the eye—Part 1 The role of format and design in readability

Volume 21, Issue 3 - Writing Matters

Pleasing the reader by pleasing the eye—Part 1 The role of format and design in readability


Whoever writes wants to be read. Yet, even if we succeed in creating an informative, logically structured, and adequately worded text tailored to our target audience, i.e., text we consider to have an adequate level of readability, our documents may still go unread—or read with antipathy. Next to linguistic factors, therefore, there is a wide range of other aspects determining how well we understand a text, including layout, typography, or cultural adequacy. Documents people can use effectively and with ease have language, graphics, and design combine into a harmonious whole. Good design helps arouse interest and singles a text out from many others that vie for our attention. In short, good design is no luxury. This article is the first in a series of assays on the role of format and design in readability. Rather than attempting to transform writers into graphics designers, the goal is to have writers see the beauty of layout and typography and have them harmoniously blend with the content to be conveyed.

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Writing Matters
Message from the President
EMWA news
Getting what you want from your scientific writing: tips for writing clearly
What's your problem? A practical approach to scientific document design
The joys of outlining in medical writing
Pleasing the reader by pleasing the eye—Part 1 The role of format and design in readability
Writing visually for medical writers
Quality control: getting the best out of your review
Pharmaceutical medical writing competencies: Comparing self-perception with employers' expectations
In the Bookstores
Journal Watch
The Webscout
Manuscript Writing
Regulatory writing
English Grammar and Style
Out On Our Own
Gained in Translation

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