We evaluate how well federal agencies comply with the Plain Writing Act of 2010. Each year, our Federal Report Card grades federal departments within each agency and advises them how to improve.
We grade federal departments on two main criteria:
- Compliance – Does the agency content submitted fulfill the requirements of the Plain Writing Act of 2010?
- Writing and Information Design – Do the samples consistently make documents and webpages easier to read, understand and use?
- See the five steps to plain language to understand our criteria for writing and information design.
How the process works
We review submissions from federal agencies between April and October each year. Only those that actively submit documents to us for our review make the report card.
If your agency does well, you’ll receive a letter of commendation from Congressman Dave Loebsack.
If your agency does poorly, you’ll receive strong encouragement from our experts on how you can improve in the future.
2016 Report Card
More information about the 2016 Federal Report Card.
Older reports (2015 and before)
You can view the complete report cards and get analysis on how each agency performed.
Interested in whether your agency would make the grade? Contact us and we’ll let you know what you need to do.
Wondering who is working on plain language in the federal government? See our list of Federal Plain Language Websites and Senior Officials.