George D. Gopen

George Gopen is the creator of the groundbreaking method known as The Reader Expectation Approach. It allows writers to predict with great accuracy how most readers will interpret the writer’s text. It therefore gives writers a new inroad to their own thinking process. Dr. Gopen has consulted with and lectured to thousands around the world, assisting writers of law, science, technology, and any other professional prose.


One to two day group lectures teach a wholly new way of creating, analyzing, and editing sophisticated professional prose. Focused tutorials analyze an individual’s writing style and isolate the one or two bad habits that keep readers from understanding the writer’s intentions.

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Books + Articles

The author of four books and dozens of articles, George’s most esteemed single work is the widely acclaimed The Science of Scientific Writing, published in 1990 by American Scientist. In 2011, when celebrating its centenary, that journal selected this as one of the 36 “classic articles” in its 100 years of publications.

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Why Choose Dr. Gopen

George Gopen is Professor Emeritus of the Practice of Rhetoric at Duke University. He has taught at the college level for 45 years and has acted as writing consultant to businesses, law firms, scientific research institutions, and governmental agencies for 37 years. Tens of thousands have benefitted from his new approach to controlling prose in all professions. He also advises individuals about writing projects, including grant applications and journal articles.

Dear Professor Gopen — This is sort of a fan letter. I’ve read with tremendous interest the paper you wrote with Judith Swann, “The Science of Scientific Writing.” The paper struck a chord with me because I helped found the Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University and teaching scientists to communicate with clarity and vividness is what we spend our time on. I found your paper, as I’m sure many have, to be extraordinarily insightful.

Alan Alda— Center for Communicating Science

Scientific Writing From the Reader’s Perspective, taught by Professor George Gopen, is the single most highly rated faculty development program offered at IU. One senior colleague with over one hundred publications to his credit attended Dr. Gopen’s workshop and summed up his experience by stating, “This was the best investment I ever made–the most cost effective time I have ever spent.” That sentiment accurately reflects the yearly evaluations of this extraordinary learning experience.

Stephen P. Bogdewic, Ph.D.— Executive Vice Dean, Indiana University School of Medicine

Dr. Gopen’s course has transformed the way many faculty and trainees in the Duke School of Medicine approach their writing. His lectures are highly entertaining and at the same time drive home his honed and original strategies for writing clearly. His lectures place him among the very best teachers I have ever witnessed. Our attendees have commented that his approach makes them rethink the way they were taught to write, and wonder why they didn’t learn Dr. Gopen’s powerful and clear approach from the beginning. Past participants have called his lectures “very relevant for critiquing and polishing scientific writing,” and even, “life changing.” I highly recommend Dr. Gopen’s courses for anyone looking to improve their written communication skills.

Ann Brown, M.D.— Duke University Medical Center