Cutting weasel words? I’ll get back to you

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We might all have certain choice words that we resist saying to our work colleagues or boss at times. But these are probably quite different from the list of taboo workplace words and phrases recently published in Forbes Magazine. The article asserts that phrases like ‘we’ll see’, ‘I don’t know’ and ‘I’ll get back to […]

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How to use commas

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Compared with pondering the placement of the much less familiar semi-colon or the enigmatic apostrophe, the ubiquitous comma might seem hardly worth worrying about. They’re ten a penny, aren’t they? Why not just sprinkle them at will or leave them out entirely? Unsurprisingly, we don’t recommend doing either. They may seem a common or garden […]

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Graduate positions

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For anyone graduating – or with offspring who are graduating – this year, you could be forgiven for thinking the future looks a little bleak. The average graduate salary is likely to stay frozen at £25,000 for the second year running, according to research by the Association of Graduate Recruiters. There are also fewer jobs […]

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How to proofread: an audio guide

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Taking the time to proofread is the only way to ensure that your work is free from potentially embarrassing errors. Fortunately, it will take you next to no time to find out exactly how to do it. Give her three minutes and writing expert and trainer Kathy Gemmell will reveal key guidelines for keeping your […]

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Writing skills for nursing students, Nursing Standard

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As the adage goes, anything worth having is worth fighting for. But it can be a rude awakening if you’ve signed onto a nursing degree course and now find your passion for helping people buried under a pile of essays and assignments. There’s no doubt that a degree is great preparation for the challenging career […]

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Dash it! Or do I mean hyphen?

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Sometimes, in a writing skills blog, you’ll find yourself in a corner of the punctuation family tree where two symbols seem so suspiciously similar to each other you could imagine they are basically interchangeable. Enter the dash and hyphen. But wait. These actually have quite different purposes, and both are vital parts of the punctuation […]

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How to engage your team with better writing

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If you’ve ever put off DIY, you’ll know that a dripping tap or peeling skirting board eventually just becomes one of life’s tolerations. If you put off the task long enough, it gets pushed to the dusty recesses of your mind. But it still chips away at your contentment, leaving you feeling uninspired and slightly […]

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How to write for non-accountants

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Finance is a murky place for many people. Money comes into the bank account and it goes out again. And the process in between is something of a mystery. But even if your clients are financially savvy, it can still be difficult to explain money matters. Accounting has its own language and is often riddled […]

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Ban the bull: skilled for Health

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Good intentions may or may not pave the road to hell, but evidently they can sometimes be wrapped up in some seriously bewildering prose. On its website, the Department of Health outlines its Skilled for Health programme. This aims to make sure people with lower levels of literacy, language and numeracy skills are as able […]

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Students plagued by poor grammar

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University students’ writing is plagued by poor grammar and punctuation and a lack of consensus on what constitutes a clear writing style, new Emphasis research has found. This inaugural research project, which marks the launch of the Emphasis Research Centre, suggests that today’s graduates – the business writers of tomorrow – aren’t being encouraged to […]

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