Question on Fog index?

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imanuragjain

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Mar 29, 2008
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The Fog Index is a readability test designed to show how easy or difficult a text is to read. It uses the following formula: Reading Level (Grade) = (Average No. of words in sentences + Percentage of words of three or more syllables) x 0.4
The resulting number is your Gunning Fog Index.
The Gunning Fog Index gives the number of years of education that your reader hypothetically needs to understand the paragraph or text. The Gunning Fog Index formula implies that short sentences written in plain English achieve a better score than long sentences written in complicated language.
For reference, the New York Times has an average Fog Index of 11-12, Time magazine about 11. Typically, technical documentation has a Fog Index between 10 and 15, and professional prose almost never exceeds 18.

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So is it better to have a higher or a lower Fog index ? What is recommended ?

- Anurag
 
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Horsa

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Jul 22, 2007
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It depends on your purpose and audience. For most purposes a lower score is desirable.
 

oregeezer

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Nov 24, 2007
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To be understood you want a LOW fog index - to write for pedagological publications you want a HIGH index. (Makes you sound erudite!)
 
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