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In this talk Karen Schriver offers a snapshot of the empirical research on clear writing and visual design. Recorded from a plenary session of the international plain language association’s PLAIN2013 conference, it is useful for anyone interested in research-based principles of clear communication, including plain language advocates, professional writers, information designers, and technical communicators. The research presented here is part of a larger project that integrates the empirical evidence that supports good writing and visual design.