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Plain Language: A New Communication Tool for Your Library

2016 January 21
by Jennifer Peters

Every once in a while I run across a game changer—something that completely changes my approach to an issue. It’s often something that seems blatantly obvious in retrospect, but I’ve never heard seen it described or articulated in a systematic way before. Last August, I was lucky enough to attend such a presentation at the Literacy Texas Annual Conference in San Marcos.

(Actually, I attended two game changers at that conference, but the second is a post for another day).

Kathryn Bauchelle is the Program Director at Literacy Advance of Houston. She is a proponent of and expert on the concept of Plain Language, which is a communication method that emphasizes using clear and direct language for the specific audience being addressed. In her position, she is required to think very intentionally about how she writes instructions, training materials, and signs for low-literacy students. She’s developed some best practices along the way. Kathryn very graciously agreed to reprise her presentation as a webinar for the library community. If your library posts signs, creates forms, writes directions, etc., you will likely enjoy learning about Plain Language and how to use it.

The webinar is Thursday, January 28, from 10-11AM. It will be recorded and archived. You can register here.


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