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Principles

1. Understand who and why

2. Understand the text

3. Choose what to say

4. Slash everything else

5. Edit sentences

6. Put into logical order

7. Demolish walls of words

8. Use links in the right way

9. Rest it then test it

 

2. Understand the text

Apply headings to identify the main points in your text.

Write headings as mini-sentences

Write a heading for each chunk of text.

Make sure each heading conveys the main message of the chunk.

What's a chunk? Often: a paragraph. But it might be: a sentence, a word, a video, an image, or any other bit of content that creates a single piece of the conversation.

Choose headings that can stand alone

The best headings are mini-sentences that can stand alone, without the content that they summarise.

Headings will also:

 

 


Well-designed headings

From Hartley, J. (1997): "In a series of experiments with secondary school children [we] investigated the role of different kinds of headings .... We concluded that headings significantly aided search, recall and retrieval."


Where to find out more

Ginny Redish's book

chapter 7: Focusing on Conversations and Key Messages