Difference Between Coherence and Consistency

Key Difference – Coherence vs Consistency

Coherence and consistency are two qualities that are often associated with good writing. Coherence is the quality of being local and orderly whereas consistency is the quality of being uniform. In writing, coherence refers to the smooth and logical flow of your writing and consistency refers to the uniformity of your style and content. This is the key difference between coherence and consistency.

What Does Coherence Mean?

Coherence can be defined as the quality of being logical, orderly and aesthetically consistent. In writing coherence implies how well your writing understood by the readers. Coherence also creates a sense of continuity in your writing. If the readers can understand your content clearly and easily, your writing is coherent.

Coherence is created by a combination of several factors. In a coherent piece of writing, each paragraph, sentence, and phrase contribute to the meaning of the whole work. Paragraph unity and link between sentences are two most significant factors in creating coherence. A coherent paragraph often begins with a topic sentence, which contains the main argument of the paragraph. The topic sentence is followed by sentences that further clarify and maintain this main argument. Sentence unity is usually created by repetition and transitional devices (words like in addition, however, that is, furthermore, etc.).

Difference Between Coherence and Consistency

What Does Consistency Mean?

Consistency is the state or quality of acting or behaving in the same way. In writing, consistency refers to how uniform your content and writing style stays throughout the text. For example, if you have used American spellings for words like color, analyze, gray, etc. you have to use American style throughout the text; you can’t write American spellings in one place and British spellings in another place. The same goes to abbreviations, names of people, punctuation, and measurements of units.

Your voice and tone should also remain consistent (in non-fiction). You can’t use long, elegant sentences in one paragraph and then write short, choppy ones in another. Another important aspect of consistency is consistency of information – this is the most important aspect of a text. Your information should remain consistent throughout the text; for example, you can’t say that someone was born in 1988 in one place and 1899 in another place. You have to be very careful to avoid mistakes like this.

What is the difference between Coherence and Consistency?

  • Coherence refers to the smooth and logical flow of your writing
  • Consistency refers to the uniformity of your style and content.

Both coherence and consistency will help you to create a good piece of writing.

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