Moving from personal to impersonal language
An example of the type of personal writing to avoid in
I believe that the "Design School
Model" is a good basic model, yet from reading the related arguments
and coming to my own conclusions, I feel
that the model is flawed because there are many factors to be considered
before a business is even ready to do a successful SWOT analysis, let
alone using it solely for the formulation of strategy. Therefore
I must conclude, based on the beliefs of Mintzberg, Ansoff and myself,
that the "Design School Model" is not a solution to the problem of formulating
The use of personal pronouns and
judgemental words in this text results in a clear
expression of the writer's feelings. As a reader therefore, you
become very aware of the writer's presence in
this text. This characteristic is undesirable for most academic
So how do you move from personal to impersonal language?
Look at how the same opinion is expressed in the following sentences.
Click each sentence to see an analysis of its language
I think that management could take a softer stance against our union.
Management could take a softer stance against the union.
A softer stance could be taken against the union.
The opinion that is expressed is equivalent in all three sentences. It
is HOW this opinion is expressed that has changed:
1 gives the impression of subjectivity
2 and especially sentence 3 are more abstract and thus seem more objective.
Comments and questions should
be directed to Unilearning@uow.edu.au