Concision and Wordiness

Kristin Fracchia
Lesson by Kristin Fracchia
Magoosh Expert
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This lesson video is about concision and wordiness. Now, concision is a word that sounds a little bit of scary, but it means being concise. Maybe, you've heard that word. On the test, we want to be as concise as possible, and as least wordy as possible. In other words, we want to be succinct.

So, shorter is almost always better as an answer choice as long as it is clear. So, you wanna be really careful not to just pick the shortest answer choice simply because it's the shortest answer choice. But make sure that it's not losing any significant detail from the text when it does that. But if you see an answer choice that has a short version, and then, several longer versions that add some extra words in there that you feel aren't really necessary.

Then, chances are, we are dealing with a question that wants you to be succinct, to be concise. So, let's look at this sample sentence. Paul had been studying for the exam for his medical license. It doesn't sound terrible, but we could make that a little more succinct, a little more concise.

Paul had studied to take the medical license exam. That's better. Even better, Paul studied for the medical license exam. That conveys all the essential information without using any extra words. So, let's just go ahead and jump into a couple test examples here. Frank M Robinson is credited with naming the beverage Coca-Cola, as well as creating the design of the trademarked, distinctive script that is still used today.

So, take a look at our answer choices here. We have some different variations of this phrase, and we have one short one here, so let's try that first and see if it works. Frank M Robinson is credited with naming the beverage Coca-Cola as well as designing the trademarked, distinctive script that is still used today. That sounds okay for me and when we really look at this question, we can see that, well, if we say that he designed something then, it's implied that he created the design, so we don't need all those extra words.

B is really wordy, constructing the original design of. So, we are looking for the most concise way of saying this and that would be designing. So, here is another example. No one meteorological model is fully being able to account for the sweltering summers that have brought nearly fifty consecutive days of triple-digit highs to some parts of the country.

This phrase sounds a little wordy for me, and you wanna particularly watch out for this word being. Being is almost always wrong on the exam. You almost never need to say being. It's just one of those words that gets put in there to add some extra words. So, let's go ahead and read in our other answer choices.

No one meteorological model is able to be accountable to the sweltering summers that have brought nearly fifty consecutive days of triple digit highs to some parts of the country. Now, the phrase, maybe it sounds a little better to you, but it's introducing an idiom error. This preposition changes the meaning here.

To be accountable to something is not the same thing as accounting for something. So, we can eliminate that one. C, no one meteorological model can fully account for the sweltering summers that have brought nearly fifty consecutive days of triple-digit highs. That sounds pretty good to me. Let's try d.

No one meteorological model has been able to account fully for the sweltering summers that have brought nearly fifty consecutive days of triple digit highs. Now that, meaning wise, is fine. But it's much wordier than c, and so, c is our most concise answer choice.

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