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What is Abridgement
According to Business Dictionary, abridgement is a shortened or condensed (but not summarized) version of a written work which preserves the overall meaning, structure, and style of the original version. It is also spelled as abridgment. Synonyms: abstract, digest, outline, précis, summary, and synopsis. Source: http://www.businessdictionary.com/
Text abridgement is the process of paraphrasing, modifying, shortening, condensing or changing a text by preserving its basic meaning.
How to Abridge
Text abridgement can be conducted in different ways and for various purposes. We often need to abridge texts to make them more readable. In the process of abridgement, we paraphrase, select synonyms and change or modify sentence structure. We keep the original meaning but present it in a new form. In other words, it is a restatement of a text. We retell the text in our own words.
Here is a step-by-step process you need to follow if you want to abridge or modify texts for your extensive reading program, i.e. to make reading for learners of English as a second language easier. It can also be used for any other purpose, such as paraphrasing, modifying, reducing or condensing a written text in a new form for e-braries or online directories.
How to Modify Text
Check the Flesch Kincaid Readability
To check the Flesch Kincaid Readability,
Highlight the text in Word:
1. Go to Review
2. Click Spelling and Grammar
3. Click Options
4. Click Show Readability Statistics
After going through the grammar and spelling, the readability stats will be shown. You need to aim from 7 to 9 maximum.
Reduce readability level
To reduce the readability level, there are three things you can do:
1. Decrease sentence length
2. Decrease passives
3. Decrease number of multisyllabic words
Of the above, 1 is the most useful. After modifying the text for readability, copy it on Word.
Check the vocabulary of the text
To check the vocabulary of the text, go to compleatlexicaltutor www.lextutor.ca
3. In the text box - delete the text in the box and paste your own text in that box.
4. Click Submit
5. Go through the text; pay particular attention to red words, i.e. off-limit words. If possible, change these to a blue or green word, i.e. a more frequently used word.
Find and replace synonyms in the text
Use Synonym Finder tool from Super Thesaurus. This tool will help you to find and replace synonyms in your document. All you need to do is paste your content into the box and click Search. You will get new, modified text. You can also use www.expressiongenie.com. It is a word suggestion search engine (XSSE). This is much like a thesaurus for words and phrases.
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