Use ordinary words

Short and clear alternatives to long and fussy words

When you are talking to your reader, say what you mean using words your reader will understand. There is no point in using unnecessarily long words. In general, where there is a plain and precise alternative, use it.

Long and fussy word/s Short and clear alternatives
an absence of no, none
abundance enough, plenty
accelerate speed up
accomplish do, finish
accordingly in line with this, so
acknowledge thank you
additional extra, more
advantageous useful, helpful
advise tell, say (unless your are giving advice)
aligned in line, lined up
alleviate ease, reduce
alternative choice, other
amendment change
an individual a person
anticipate expect
application use
appropriate right, proper, suitable
ascertain find out
assistance help
attempt try
authorise allow, let
beneficial helpful, useful
calculate work, decide
communicate talk, write, phone (be specific)
complete fill in, finish
completion end
concerning about
consequently so
considerable great, important
consult talk to, meet, ask
currently now (or edit it out)
deficiency lack of
demonstrate show, prove
difficulties problems
discontinue stop, end
discrete separate
documentation papers, documents
dominant main
duration length, time, life
emphasise stress
employment work
enable allow
endeavour try
ensure make sure
establish show, find out, set up
excessive too many, too much
expenditure spending
expedite speed up
facilitate help, make possible
frequently often
further to after
generate produce, give, create
identify find, list, specify, discover
illustrate show, explain
implement carry out, do
impact affect
inception start, beginning
inform tell
initially at first
intend to will
issue give, send
liaise with meet/discuss/work with
locate find, put
magnitude size
manner way
marginal small, slight
migrate move
modification change
negligible slight
notify tell, let you know
numerous many (or be specific)
objective aim, goal
obtain get, receive
optimum best, ideal
outcomes results (or be specific)
participate take part, join in
projected estimated
provide give
qualify for can get, be able to get
reduce cut
require need
requirements needs, rules
represent show, stand for
supplementary extra, more
solely only
substantial large, a lot of, great
ultimately in the end, finally
undertake agree, promise, do
utilise use

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