The Use of "Hedges" in Academic Texts
In academic texts, the word indicate is often used as a "hedge". A "hedge" means that the writer uses a weaker word, for example "indicate" instead of a stronger word, like "prove". Another example of a hedge word is using the word "considerable" instead of "big". According to Prof. Ken Hyland, hedge words are a well-known feature of academic texts.
Why do writers use hedge words? Hyland's analyses of academic texts show these words enable writers to state their case with caution and precision. This helps writers to gain acceptance for their claims and reduce the chances of possible criticism and opposition to what they are claiming.
Researchers conducted experiments on children's ability to concentrate in class. Results of these experiments indicate that eating breakfast helps children to concentrate on their studies.
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