Clear Technical Writing
Clear Terms

Activity Qualifiers

Sometimes we think it would be insulting to be terse, so we add a word to show the reader we are being thorough for them.

The sanitizing action continued.

It's okay to be brief. Your readers truly don't mind.

The sanitizing continued.

They understand it better and they read it quicker. They don't even think about you being terse; they are too busy reading the next sentence.

Sometimes we add a phrase.

In operation, the spray gun is loud.

A spray gun can only be heard if it is being operated, so the activity qualifier is not needed.

The spray gun is loud.

Some activity qualifiers can simply be removed.

The search function was performed several times.

The search was performed several times.

Our simulation effort showed how well the subroutine worked.

Our simulation showed how well the subroutine worked.

Some activity qualifiers should be extracted with a minor rewrite.

Our new equipment controls the precipitation process.

Our new equipment controls precipitation.

We will rely on the high-temperature cracking technique.

We will rely on high-temperature cracking.

Try to spot an activity qualifier in each sentence.

We have been supporting work in six-sigma investigations. They started some new research functions. The new survey action will generate valuable data. I hope it will also be used for training purposes.

Lesson: Activity Qualifiers
Module: Clear Terms
Course: Clear Technical Writing