Important information about swine flu!

So said the leaf­let that has dropped through every door in the United Kingdom.

At my last ever liter­acy volun­teer­ing session in Birmingham (at the wonder­ful Brasshouse Language Learning Centre, with the tutor Nerys and all the adult liter­acy students), we went through this oh‐so‐important leaf­let, and came up with stum­bling blocks all over the place! Why would you use words like “pandemic”, “strain”, or “respir­at­ory” in a leaf­let meant for every­one to read?

As a small trib­ute to all the students I’ve worked with over the past two years, I’ve tried to make a more read­able version. The produc­tion values are lower, it’s a bit shorter, but it’s pretty simple to read and under­stand (I hope!). Download the PDF here.

I will be trans­lat­ing the Animal Testing paper at some point in the next two weeks — I’m moving to London to start a new job, so it will take a while to get settled in and find a reli­able inter­net connec­tion! Thanks for your patience, and keep read­ing and comment­ing.

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Corinne Pritchard

Corinne Pritchard

Information Designer at Simply Understand
I believe design and design­ers can and should make the world a better place. I love design­ing things that help people under­stand complex ideas.
Corinne Pritchard

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9 thoughts on “Important information about swine flu!

  1. Corinne,You have done a great job. However, there are times when it is useful to explain tech­nical words. A head­line today reads “WHO considers declar­ing swine flu pandemic”, and I think there are going to be many more like this. The flu leaf­let would be more useful if it explained briefly what a pandemic is (and perhaps the role of the World Health Organisation).

  2. I love it. There needs to be more stuuf like this: In between the word­less picture books, and the OMFGJARGONZ.

  3. CorinneI think your simpli­fied leaf­let could be very useful for E1E2 adult literacy/ESOL students and have said so on my Blog.I also agree with Michael’s comment — there’s noth­ing wrong with using tech­nical language espe­cially when it is an easy‐to‐read (decode) word such as pandemic.I look forward to explor­ing more of your site and shar­ing more of your simpli­fied texts with my students.Thank you

  4. Fantastic trans­la­tion; I agree that explain­ing words that are going to come up again and again in radio and TV reports (such as ‘pandemic’) could be useful.Also please note ‘a illness’ on page 2 should be fixed to read ‘an’…

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