Friday, 1 November 2013

Getting hung up on 'word count'

A contentious issue that has raised its head again is 'word count' - with students asking 'what if I go over' etc...

Here's my stock reply - I understand that most find this useful:

The official line from the University is that we can't penalise for being over the word count.  However, what we can penalise for is not writing concisely, content not relevant to the topic (waffle?), and repetition.  So - if you are heading well over the suggested word count, perhaps you need to go back and make sure that your study can't be accused of any of that.

One way you could reduce the word count may be to put some of the data from your findings in an appendix and then report them in summary form in the Findings and Discussion chapter.  Also - watch out for long quotes - you can paraphrase very concisely.

If you google 'reduce word count' you might come up with other suggestions.  Here's one I like:

If anyone finds good advice elsewhere please post a comment here.

Very kindest regards to all, David