Can someone revise this sentence?


I would like to improve these sentence to make it sound more professional.


"Those who have previous experience with an individual with a psychological disorder."


I feel that "with an individual with" could be improved.

Also, I rather not use the word "suffering from" because this is an essay on stigma.

Thank you in advance.

asked Oct 04 '12 at 03:32 eduardo New member

3 answers


This is only a clause Eduardo, not a sentence.  It is difficult to rewrite because I am unsure who "those" refers to.  Is it a person who has lived with a person with mental illness?  Perhaps it is an employer or a health care provider?  What is the rest of the sentence that will be attached to this clause?  Give us a little more to go one & I'll try to help you reword it.

link answered Oct 04 '12 at 04:05 Patty T Grammarly Fellow

Ok, thanks for your time. I'll be more specific. This is part of a sentence reporting survey results so "those" are the participants of the survey who claimed to have previous experience with psychological disorders. The full sentence is: "participants who claimed to have previous experience with an individual with a psychological disorder will have a lower mean of scaled avoidance towards schizophrenic individuals compared to participants claiming no previous experience with an individual with a psychological disorder." hope it makes sense now :)

eduardoOct 04 '12 at 04:17

Okay, so "those" are people who have had any sort of relationship with a mentally ill person? I can see why you want to change the clause. That is a lot of words to repeat in one sentence. Help me understand what "a lower mean of scaled avoidance" means. I think it means that on average, people with experience are less likely to avoid schizophrenics. (?)

Patty TOct 04 '12 at 04:34

My bad, I forgot to mention that this was a hypothesis which is why I must talk about measurable variables. I can't write just "avoidance" so "scaled avoidance" is indicating that the construct (un-observable) "avoidance" is being measured by a scale which is a 1 to 5 survey question on how likely are you to avoid an Individual displaying the symptoms. And yep all that you stated above is correct. I hope I didn't confuse you even more

eduardoOct 04 '12 at 04:53

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Eduardo, you can magically transform this clause by simply changing the first with to of.

Those who have previous experience of an individual with a psychological disorder . . . etc.


Going a stage further, you might also consider pluralizing thus:

Those who have previous experience of individuals with a psychological disorder . . . etc.


It was the with-with factor causing the niggling feeling.

link comment answered Oct 04 '12 at 08:00 Peter Guess Expert

The full sentence that you put in the comments is very wordy with a lot of the same words repeated.  When I see something overly wordy, I try to break it down (in a very elementary way) to the basic idea that needs to be said.  These people have a lower mean of scaled avoidance than those people.  Then I build it back up. 


Instead of individual with a psychological disorder, can you say a mentally ill person?  It is much more concise. 


Lower mean of scaled avoidance feels like a double negative to me.  They have a less negative reaction = they have a more positive reaction.  Since you have to talk about scaled avoidance, you might consider flipping the sentence on its head and say that the people who have no experience have a higher mean of scaled avoidance. 


To describe the people who are opposite (experience vs. no experience) you don’t have to spell it all out with the whole long phrase. 


Participants claiming no prior experience with a mentally ill person have a higher mean of scaled avoidance toward schizophrenic individuals than those who have previous familiarity.

link comment edited Oct 04 '12 at 19:07 Patty T Grammarly Fellow

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