How To Write Informative Articles
The simple guide to writing
high quality informative content
that makes impact.
Before You Start
Write to inform your readers:
- Write down for yourself what your main topic is and how readers benefit from your writings.
- Answer this question: why would somebody be interested in reading this article at this time?
- Write down your approach: with what structure and what content are you going to achieve your goal. This provides a framework. When you’ll be writing the article itself this can evolve and change.
- ‘Informative’ does not mean dry or impersonal. You can communicate at a one-on-one basis. Aim for a pleasant reading experience.
- ‘Informative’ does not mean ‘complicated.’ You can keep your writing concise and make clear statements for maximum impact. Simple writing is persuasive.
- Write short sentences. Avoid putting multiple thoughts in one sentence.
- Write simple sentences: Readers comprehend “the boy hit the ball” quicker than “the ball was hit by the boy.” Both sentences mean the same, but it’s easier to imagine the object (the boy) before the action (the hitting).
- Avoid superlatives like “very,” or "astronomically." If you think you need a superlative, then complement it with the actual figures. For example, add to “exceptional growth rate” the facts of the actual rate of growth.
You can use technical terms and jargon if you subsequently explain and clarify. This way your article can be interesting and readable to both peers in your field as novices.
Spell out acronyms the first time you use one.
Title & Subtitle
Title: Ideally use a narrative title that expresses your essential message, or the content of the article. Experiment with several variants to find one that really works. If you find it challenging to get a good title, defer it till after you have written the article because you might pick up ideas as you write, or ask a 3rd person for suggestions.
Subtitle: Summarise your article into one short sentence describing the main topic, goal, or outcome for the reader. Make sure title and subtitle together tell the user why they should continue reading.
Capture interest & tell what to expect:This first paragraph should convey and summarize the significance of your article and should also be interesting enough to entice the readers to continue reading. You need to spark the interest of the reader, because humans internalize information better when their attention is focused. You also need to lay out what the reader can expect when reading the article. Summarize the structure and content. This helps during reading as it puts the information they receive in the context of the article. For example; “I’ll first explain why X happens, and then share examples.”
Pay attention to information that may distract the reader from the main topic if added to the article. Be sure to stay focused on your topic when you write.
Maintain a logical flow.
Each paragraph should flow smoothly and logically to the next one. You can be explicit in describing how paragraphs relate to each other. For example, a sentence like “The following paragraph illustrates the principle described here.” Do not jump around from one issue to the next.
Keep paragraphs short.
Readers are generally drawn to relatively small sized paragraphs. Often 3 to 6 lines per paragraph can convey the essence of what you want to say
Provide trustworthy sources.
Make sure your information is credible. Verify facts, dates, numbers, statistics, names, and spellings. Cite sources of information that if it is key to your topic.
Summarize or conclude the article: In the last paragraph summarize your main points and issues, or you draw a conclusion based on the information You can provide information on how readers can help or take action from the information in your article. You can also provide information on where to find further information, or what to read next to continue exploring your topic.
References: Finally; provide a list of references that you directly used as sources for the information in the article.
That’s it. Happy writing! Further questions? Email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Are you a student and would you like to get exposure for your work, get connections, and build up your CV? You can submit an article as part of our University Technology Exposure Program and publish your work to the global engineering community and industry.