Technical Writing Basics

Technical Writing Basics : A Guide to Style and Form

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For one-semester freshman/sophomore-level courses in Technical Writing; and an excellent reference for any course that requires technical writing. Using a reader-friendly approach that is incremental and cumulative, this short, uncluttered guide to technical writing shows students how to take the structures, patterns, and strategies of writing learned in a Basic Composition course (summary, process, analysis, and persuasion) and apply them in different kinds of technical documents. Direct practical explanations, copious real-world examples, and a variety of "role-playing" exercises lead students through the process of document production and assessment-or what the author calls "transactional" writing: getting another person to read one's material, presenting such material clearly and accurately, and adhering to standards of format acceptable in the field. Unlike most other texts (which focus on the writing needs in the executive domain of the major corporation only), this guide covers a variety of non-corporate working environments that also require skill in technical communications (e.g., social service agencies, institutions, and small businesses).show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 240 pages
  • 148 x 228 x 14mm | 299.38g
  • Pearson Education (US)
  • Pearson
  • United States
  • English
  • 3rd edition
  • 0131140892
  • 9780131140899

Back cover copy

This practical guidebook to workplace writing shows how to apply the structure, patterns, and strategies learned in a Basic Composition course to the production of different types of technical documents. A variety of models of style and format are presented that demonstrate how to create technical documents that produce concrete results. Included in this book: Practical examples of simple and complex technical documentsTechnical documents in a broad range of institutional contexts, including major companies, non-profit organizations, agencies, and small businessesSections of the book build progressively but have been designed as standalone units that can be covered in any sequence, offering flexibility in course designWritten in a straightforward student-friendly stylePractical guidelines for executing a job searchshow more

Table of contents

1. Introduction. What Is "Business" or "Technical" Writing?Transactional Writing.Transactional Versus Academic Writing.Working Together.Growing a Document.Using Computers.Saying What You Mean: A Grammar Refresher.Grammar and Usage Assist Credibility.Sentence Types in Technical Writing.Sentence Problems.Other Mechanical Difficulties.Dangling Modifiers.Parallelisim.Diction and International Concerns.Assignments. 2. Organizing Information. Introduction.Patterns of Order.Types of Order.Essentials of Logical Order.Specific Templates.Summary.Process.Analysis.Comparison.Persuasion.Ethics in Persuasion.Assignments. 3. Letters, Memos, E-mail, and Related Forms. Introduction.Letters: The Basics.Full Block Form.Semi-Block Form.Simplified Form.Memos: The Basics.Varieties of Letters and Memos.Neutral Letters.Good News Letters.Bad News Letters.Good News, Bad News, and Neutral Memos.E-mail and Related Forms.E-mail.Fax Cover Sheets.Other Transmittals.Assignments. 4. Our House to Yours: Using Summaries to Inform. Introduction.Announcements and Bulletins.Leaflets and Flyers.Analyses of Documents.Consumer Circuit.The New AT&T Bill.Finesse Finishing Papers.State Farm 1995 Annual Report.Assignments. 5. Directions and Instructions: Writing about Process. Process Explains "How."Process Writing Concerns.Audience.Vocabulary.Pattern.Transition.Exemplification.Parallelism.Format.Graphics.Invention.Developing Ideas.Invention Specifics.Visualization Techniques."Tasking" Techniques.General Patterns for Process Writing.International Communications.Assignment. 6. Using Analysis: Writing a Report. Subject Headings.Division.Classification.Definition.Use of Narrative.Types of Reports.Short Reports.Semi-Formal Reports.Proposals.Analysis of Proposal.Analysis of Text Prospectus.Discussion of Grant Proposal.Discussion of Student Proposal.Assignments. 7. Writing the Formal Report. Features of the Formal Report.Overview.Binding.Booklet Format.Cover Sheet.Transmittal Letter or Memo.Table of Contents.Table of Illustrations.Abstract, or Executive Summary.Introduction.Support Section.Closing Section.Back Matter.Understanding the Role of the Persuasive Pattern.Developing Long Reports from Shorter Ones.Methods of Research.Strategy.Types of Research Materials-Retrospective and Current.Primary and Secondary Materials.Handling Sources.Overview.Documentation Systems-Citation and Reference List.What Should Get Cited?Integrating References.Gallery of Documents.Assignments. 8. Selling Yourself . Introduction.Keeping a Work-History File.The Modern Job Search.Resumes.Chronological Resumes.Functional Resumes.Mixed Resumes.Parts of Resumes.Cover Letters.Vitae and Portfolios.Interviews.Follow-up Correspondence.Assignments.References. Introduction.Valediction.Appendix: Enhancing Your Document with Graphics. more

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11 ratings
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3 9% (1)
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