Reading level

It is important to present information clearly for users. The average reading age in the UK is nine years old and so we should write in a way that is easy to understand for all users.

Aim for the following statistics:

  • an average sentence length of 12 words
  • Flesch-Kincaid reading ease score of 60 and over

The Flesch-Kincaid score tells you how easily understandable text is to read. If the score is high, the sentence is more readable. To find this in Microsoft Word, follow these instructions:

  • click the Microsoft Office Button, and then click “Word Options”
  • click “Proofing”
  • make sure “Check grammar with spelling” is selected.
  • under “When correcting grammar in Word”, select the “Show readability statistics” check box

Hemingway Editor

Hemingway Editor is another tool that will assess the readability grade of your content and suggest ways to improve your score.

Do not paste sensitive information or unpublished data into Hemingway – it is a security risk. Use the Flesch-Kincaid reading level tool in Microsoft instead.

Hemingway Editor will not allow you to paste into it if opened in some browsers. We advise using Google Chrome.