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Link to Plain Language Initiative
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The Plain Language Initiative requires the use of plain language in all new documents written for the public, other government entities and fellow workers. Writing that is clear and to the point helps improve communication between the government and the public since clear material takes less time to read and understand. NIH Director Dr. Elias Zerhouni urges that all government documents use plain language and avoid both jargon and highly technical language.

This Web site contains many resources to help writers achieve the goal of plain language at NIH. Some points to remember:

* Answer your reader's questions
* Use language appropriate for your reader
* Include only necessary details
* Use the active voice
* Use personal pronouns such as "we" and "you"
* Use short sentences and paragraphs
* Use tables, lists, and other easy-to-understand design features.

Last updated: April 2, 2003