Writing for the Government:
Plain Language Exercise/Quiz

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Enter your answers to the following questions in the input boxes, and then press E-mail answers.

  1. Rewrite the following paragraph so that it has a clear topic sentence that orients the reader to the subject-matter and a concluding sentence:

    Because of a number of incorrect citations and incomplete sentences, the paper was received poorly by the committee. The paper was written about possible solutions to the shortage of drinking water in the area of Starr County. As a result, the committee rejected the proposed solutions. The paper was written and submitted to the committee by an analyst who has not taken any writing courses.

  2. Rewrite the following sentences in the active voice:

    The murder weapon was discovered by the police. The paper was written and submitted to the committee by an analyst who has not taken any writing courses.

  3. Make the following sentence more concise. Eliminate unnecessary words.

    The inspector performed an evaluation of the site. The highway appeared to have a condition of wetness. In accordance with the applicable rules duly promulgated by the Commission, you are hereby ordered to cease your drug-selling operation.

  4. Break up this long and confusing sentence into several sentences that are easier to read and make the sentences more concise (Hint: look for verbs that have been turned into nouns.):

    If an employee suffers an injury at work, the safety supervisor, after filling out an accident report form and interviewing all witnesses, must consult with the injured employee about the nature, extent, and location of their injuries, unless the employee is suffering from an incapacitating condition or the injuries constitute an emergency situation, in which case the safety supervisor should immediately place a call to 911.

   

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