Every role I have ever played in communications, whether it be in healthcare, human resources, information technology, faith-based reporting or even fiction – the challenge is to simplify the language so that it is accessible to all readers, regardless of their background or academic make-up. This interesting subject came to us from The Scholarly Kitchen in their article, “Jargon.”

In scholarly communication, there are constant pleas for authors to write in plainer, simpler language. By minimizing the use of jargon, not only is access improved, but the understanding and engagement of the content.

There are some who believe the “simplifying of content” works against the main purpose of the published research paper — to serve as a high-level conversation among experts. A research paper is supposed to assume some level of prior knowledge.

Where do you stand on this topic? Not everyone is an academic, but how often do non-academics read published academic journals?

Melody K. Smith

Sponsored by Access Innovations, the world leader in thesaurus, ontology, and taxonomy creation and metadata application.