Reading & Writing Across Curriculum

Correcting Vague Language

Vague language is language that talks about something without directly saying what it is. Avoid vague language in your essays whenever possible, since it makes your ideas more difficult to follow. The following are examples of vague words or expressions, along with more specific ones:

vague This poem gives me a certain feeling.
specific This poem gives me a happy feeling.
vague A particular experience taught me the value of physical health.
specific My years traveling with the circus taught me the value of physical health.
vague This paper will explain my beliefs about animal testing.
specific This paper will explain my opposition to animal testing.
vague The author's view of taxes can be seen in Chapter Three.
specific The author's favorable view of taxes can be seen in Chapter Three.

 

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Page last modified: May 13, 2016