Speed Writing SR&ED Documents (SR&ED Shorthand)

(or, how to make your life easier when you have multiple projects to write on a deadline)

When writing an SR&ED technical narrative, there are often words or phrases that are used repeatedly. For larger organizations that have multiple narratives, it can quickly become frustrating repeating the same phrases. One option to help speed the process is using Microsoft Word’s AutoCorrect function to your advantage.

AutoCorrect allows you to insert a long piece of text quickly. For example, if you need to repeatedly enter a phrase such as “In the previous reporting period”, you can set up the program to automatically enter this phrase when you enter a shorthand version such as “prp“. This shorthand allows you to focus on your answer (i.e., the work completed in the previous reporting period) instead of the lead-in text.

Setting Up Shorthand Codes in MS Word

To set up your shorthand codes, locate the AutoCorrect option in your version of Word. Note: These screenshots were created using the Mac 2011 version of Word. For detailed methods on finding AutoCorrect, please click here.

Screen Shot 2015-07-09 at 12.05.23 PM

  1. On the AutoCorrect tab, make sure the Replace text as you type check box is selected.
  2. In the Replace box, type the shorthand code you have developed – for example, “prp
  3. In the With box, type the correct spelling of the word — for instance, type “In the previous reporting period.”

Screen Shot 2015-07-09 at 12.05.54 PM

Important: Until you are confident with your new shorthand versions of key phrases, make sure you have them written down. 

This tip is also useful for ensuring your weekly or monthly reports are written in a particular style with consistent language.

Sample Shorthand for SR&ED

Below are several examples of text that regularly appear in each section. Make sure that you still proof your work, to ensure your sentences are grammatically correct!


  • toop – The technological objective of this project was to
  • qmth  – Quantifiable metrics that can be used to test the hypothesis include
  • sturpi – Specific technological uncertainties related to this project include


  • prp  – In the previous reporting period
  • crp – In the current reporting period
  • ptrp – Prior to this reporting period
  • wht – We hypothesized that
  • sar – Subsequent analysis of the results revealed
  • atorp – At the outset of the reporting period
  • aterp – At the end of the reporting period


  • aok – We advanced our knowledge in relation to
  • sai – Specific advancements include
  • wut – We were unable to

Can you think of any other phrases that are commonly used when writing SR&ED projects? Please contact us with your shorthand suggestions. This list will be updated periodically to reflect the best practices we have seen in the industry.