Course Contents at a Glance

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The following list shows a summary of the topics covered in this course. To see all of the course pages, visit the Table of Contents.

Module 1: Introduction

  • What is Technical Writing?
  • The Many Contexts of Communicating Technical Information
  • Basic Assumptions and Potential Complications
  • Legal Issues and Communication
  • Appreciating Different Cultures

Module 2: Audience-Centered Communication

  • Audience-Centered Communication Overview
  • Appreciating Technical Communication Audiences
  • Rhetorical Nature of Technical and Professional Writing

Module 3: Format

  • General Design Concepts
  • Additional Sources for Formatting

Module 4: Language and Tone

  • Avoiding Confusing Terms
  • Legal Issues
  • Use Language That is Sensitive to Your Audience
  • How Will Your Reader Respond to This Tone?
  • Use Concrete, Sensory Language
  • Use the Active Voice
  • Read Your Paper Aloud to Check Cohesiveness
  • Use Parallel Structure
  • Rephrase Awkward Word Order
  • Eliminate Unnecessary Language

Module 5: Visuals

  • NASA: Technical Report Writing
  • The Value of Visual Instructions
  • Photos and Illustrations

Module 6: Websites

  • Considerations for Website Writing
  • Website Design
  • Page Design
  • Pictures and Photographs
  • Typography
  • Video

Module 7: Memos

  • Memos: Style for Students
  • Memos: Writing Commons
  • Memos: Purpose and Format

Module 8: Letters

  • Example Letters
  • Professional Letters
  • Memorandums and Letters
  • Business Letters

Module 9: Descriptive and Prescriptive Reports

  • Composing Business Reports and Proposals
  • Procedure and Process Reports
  • Instructions and Process Reports
  • Examples of Instructional and Process Reports

Module 10: Classification and Partition Reports

  • Classification Reports and Partition Reports Overview
  • Organizational Patterns
  • Classifying
  • Comparing and Contrasting

Module 11: Informative Presentations

  • Instructional Presentation Overview
  • Functions of the Presentation to Inform
  • Types of Presentations to Inform
  • Getting Started with an Informative Presentation
  • Preparing Your Informative Speech
  • Creating an Informative Presentation

Module 12: Research

  • Textual Research
  • APA Documentation Overview
  • Basic Guidelines For Citing Resources
  • APA Style Documentation
  • APA Style In-Text Citations
  • APA Style Reference Lists
  • Questions to Evaluate the Authority of the Researcher’s Methods
  • Demystify Research Methods
  • Intellectual Property

Module 13: Problem Analysis

  • Planning Reports (Annotated)

Module 14: Summaries and Responses

  • Summaries and Responses

Module 15: Proposal

  • Preparing Business Proposals
  • Front Matter: Contents, Lists, and More
  • Ethics and Technical Communication

Module 16: Feasibility Report

  • Preparing Feasibility Studies
  • Front Matter: Contents, Lists, and More
  • Ethics and Technical Communication

Module 17: Persuasive Presentations

  • Functions of the Presentation to Persuade
  • Principles of Persuasion
  • Meeting the Listener’s Basic Needs
  • Presentations to Persuade, Getting Started
  • Persuasive Presentation Assessment

Module 18: Rules of Writing

  • Basic Rules of Punctuation
  • Edit for Economy
  • Punctuation, Mechanics, Capitalization, and Spelling Introduction
  • Hyphens
  • Apostrophes
  • Quotation Marks
  • Semicolons, Colons, and Dashes
  • Commas
  • The Period
  • Parentheses
  • Abbreviations and Acronyms
  • Expressing Temperatures and Numbers
  • Capitalization
  • Spelling
  • Everyday Words that are Commonly Misspelled
  • Terms that are Commonly Misspelled in Technical Writing