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Uses and Benefits of Text Features

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Uses and Benefits of Text Features
Text features are the parts of the text that are not included in the main body of the text. These text features might include the general helping parts you find in the given text, like a glossary, table of contents, or even the title of the text.

The text features are added to the text to make navigation easier during reading and understanding.

Let’s discuss some of the text features, their particular uses in the text body, and how they can be helpful for the students and tutors.

What is a text feature?

What is a text feature

While we are reading an article or a nonfiction text, we can find some components in the text that are not a part of the main text body, but they turn out to be very helpful while navigating and understanding the text. These components are basically referred to as text features. We can find these text features embedded in the text of articles, magazines, books, newspapers, and many more.

When a reader comes across a difficult text or if they are unable to locate a certain text, they can simply refer to the text features in the text, and it can offer them instant help to search through and understand the text in a better way.

In this way, text features are very helpful to the reader who is reading a nonfiction text.

Purpose of text feature

The main purpose of the text features is to help the reader comprehend the meaning of the text and the message. The writer adds some tiny details to the text in the form table of contents, title, labeled diagrams, and glossary that helps the reader know better about the message that the writer wants them to receive and comprehend.

This makes the comprehension easier; otherwise, the reader would comprehend a different meaning of the text instead of the meaning the writer wants to convey.

For instance, if a person wants to read about the anatomy of a flower, the writer would add a table of contents describing the names of parts that are described, and other than this, the writer can also add labeled images of the parts that can help the reader have a better idea of the text they are reading.

Usually, the text features have information that is not present in the main text body. Sometimes graphs or charts are added to give the logistic figures or stats about the given data. The stats are not quite often present in the main text, but they can be found and understood easily through the graphical representation in the form of text features.

Commonly used text features

Here we have discussed some common types of text features that are used by the writers to make the reader understand the text in a better way.

The title

The title is the most important part of the text. It indicates what the whole text is about and the purpose of the given text body. Without a specific title allotted to the text, the whole written body appears to be misleading and confusing because the reader would not have any idea what the text is mainly about. This is the purpose of the title, to let the reader know what they are reading about.

Usually, this text feature comes on top of the text as the main heading, so before the reader starts reading the text, they would know what the whole text is about and whether they want to read about it or not. The title is not very long in length. It is kept short just to give the reader the basic idea of the text context.

The title should be:

  • Short and to the point.
  • Catchy and attention-grabbing.
  • Explaining the main text body.
  • Relevant to all parts of the text.

The title

Table of contents

This is a tabulated list of all the topics that have been covered in the given text. Adding a table of contents to the article or writing helps the reader to easily locate where a particular text part can be found in the whole text body. It also helps the reader to, before starting reading, whether the question they are looking for is even present in the text or not.

A table of contents is important even for the writers because it helps them to organize their text in one place and lets them determine if they have missed an important point that they should have added in the text.

Commonly the table of contents should have the following features:

  • Next to the title page
  • Should include all the topics and headings mentioned.
  • The headings should be listed in an orderly manner from top to bottom.
  • Subheadings where necessary.
  • Page numbers along with heading.