Create content that’s easy to read

Writing content for everyone

This is from UK’s Government Digital Service (GDS) builds platforms, products and services that help deliver a simple, joined-up and personalised experience of government to everyone.

Most of the students I work with fell out of a formal education system early. They face different challenges including dyslexia, poor vision and previously undiagnosed learning difficulties. 

If a service wasn’t written with them in mind, it’s probably not meeting user needs.

Less is more

  • identify the main points in large blocks of text
  • concentrate on reading for long periods of time
  • retain the information they’re reading as they read it
  • only including content that meets a specific user need
  • organising information into manageable chunks
  • using bullet points to break up long lists

Punctuation can slow people down

  • capital letters
  • contractions, eg ‘would’ve’
  • apostrophes

Be direct

  • there’s no room for subtle implications
  • If someone has to do something to use a service, you can’t hint at it, you have to tell them quickly and clearly.
  • Using phrases like ‘you must’ can help users understand when there’s a step they have to follow.