Doctors use electrocardiograms and that sort of thing to investigate heart problems. → Doctors use tests such as electrocardiograms to investigate heart problems. Writing Tip The kind of language you might use in conversation is often inappropriate in academic work because it is too informal or imprecise. In your written work, you need to develop a precise, objective style and to avoid colloquial language, such as slang and clichés. Words and phrases to avoid Read the following sentences and think about which words you would avoid in formal writing, and how you might replace them. 1 It would be dead easy for the Government to make unhealthy foods much more expensive. 2 There are loads of examples of advertising campaigns that have changed public attitudes to health. 3 Gone are the days when the public would automatically pay attention to a ministerial broadcast. 4 The town-centre workshops were brilliant. Here are the sentences as you might write them in an academic essay: 1 What’s wrong: Colloquial language or slang terms such as dead easy, cool, cute, kids, guys, ad, uni, skive, kip and doss should be avoided in formal writing.
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