Reporting Technical Information

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Edition: 11th
Format: Paperback
Pub. Date: 2005-07-28
Publisher(s): Oxford University Press
List Price: $202.65

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Summary

BETTER WRITING AND SUCCESS AT WORK BEGIN IN YOUR CLASSROOM WITH REPORTING TECHNICAL INFORMATION, ELEVENTH EDITION, A CLASSIC TEXT WITH THOROUGHLY CONTEMPORARY CONTENT. One of the leading texts in technical writing, Reporting Technical Information introduces students to all aspects of effective professional communication, including letters, proposals, progress reports, recommendation reports, research reports, instructions, and oral reports. FEATURES OF THE ELEVENTH EDITION: * A fully integrated companion website--www.oup.com/us/houp--that offers: Additional practical resources for students: chapter overviews, sample writings, self-tests, "current topic" annotated links and additional resources, interactive tutorials, key terms and concepts, downloadable versions of important question checklists from the book, and a collaborative network(message board links and helpful WebCT and Blackboard content outlines) Resources for instructors: an Instructor's Manual and downloadable PowerPoint files for use as lecture aids (also available on CD), links to online resources including an outline of--and links to--available WebCT and Blackboard content, and writing assignments instructors have shared for "BetterWriting--Success at Work" Three different types of icons throughout the book that direct students to the website for additional resources: sample documents, exercises, and further reading * New, broader approach that prepares students in a variety of science, health, business, engineering, and technical majors to develop the types of documents they will need to write in their prospective work environments * Strong focus on the rhetorical nature of writing, helping writers to understand their readers and the contexts in which their documents will be read and used, define their purpose in writing, and design documents using these issues as critical guidelines * Updated and additional coverage of current technology, including thoroughly revised chapters on document design and usability that take into account web-based documents and platforms * New opening scenarios for each chapter that demonstrate the impact of technical communication in the real world * New chapters on content management, versatility and creativity for reports, and using design and format to achieve clarity in documents * Increased coverage of ethics and international and global workplace issues * Many new example documents--more than half of the sample documents in the text are new--and more illustrative figures * More end-of-chapter exercises, including projects that encourage student interaction and collaboration, several of which are linked to an online component on the companion website

Table of Contents

Planning and Revision Checklist inside front cover
How to Use Reporting Technical Information preceding front matter
Preface xvii
An Overview of Technical Writing
3(10)
The Matter of Definition
4(1)
Writing at Work versus Writing at School
4(4)
Eight Basic Differences
5(3)
Writing and Communicating at Work
8(2)
The Foundations of Effective Technical Writing
10(1)
The Qualities of Good Technical Writing
10(1)
Exercises
11(2)
PART ONE Foundations
13(122)
Composing
15(14)
The Basic Parts of the Composing Process
16(9)
Analyzing the Writing Situation: Audience and Purpose
16(1)
Choosing/Discovering Content
17(1)
Arranging Content
17(1)
Drafting and Revising
18(2)
Revision
20(1)
Document Design
21(1)
Editing
21(4)
Using the Composing Process in a Workplace Environment
25(1)
Understanding the Composing Process: Why Bother?
26(1)
Exercises
27(2)
Writing for Your Readers
29(24)
Goals of Communication
30(1)
The Planning Process
30(19)
Determining Your Readers
31(2)
Asking Questions to Analyze Your Readers
33(11)
Determining Your Purpose
44(1)
Understanding Your Role as a Writer
44(3)
Planning the Content
47(1)
Anticipating the Context in Which Your Writing Will Be Received
47(2)
Thinking about Your Readers: A Summary of Considerations
49(2)
Exercises
51(2)
Achieving a Readable Style
53(32)
The Paragraph
54(4)
Basic Principles of Effective Style
58(5)
Determine Readers' Knowledge of the Subject
58(1)
Determine Whether a Particular Style Will Be Expected
59(1)
Anticipate Readers' Comprehension Level in a Given Context
60(1)
Know Your Relationship to the Readers and How You Want to Sound
60(2)
Adjust the Style to the Reader, the Purpose, and the Context
62(1)
Select Your Level of Language; Adjust the Density of Information
62(1)
The Sentence
63(14)
Watch Sentence Length
63(1)
Keep Subjects and Verbs Close Together
63(1)
Omit Verbiage; Use Concrete Verbs
64(3)
Write ``Clean'' Prose
67(1)
Avoid Ponderous Language
67(1)
Avoid Excessive Use of Is/Are Verb Forms
68(1)
Use Active Voice for Clarity
69(1)
Define When Necessary
70(2)
Avoid Impersonal Language
72(5)
Exercises
77(8)
Writing Ethically
85(18)
Ethical Perspectives
86(1)
Your Professional Obligations
86(1)
Codes of Conduct
87(3)
Recognizing Unethical Communication
90(5)
Plagiarism and Theft of Intellectual Property
90(3)
Deliberately Imprecise or Ambiguous Language
93(1)
Manipulation of Numerical Information
93(1)
Use of Misleading Illustrations
93(1)
Promotion of Prejudice
94(1)
Anticipating Consequences
95(2)
Applying Principles
97(1)
Handling Unethical Situations
97(1)
Exercises
98(5)
Writing for International Readers
103(32)
Establishing a Perspective on International Communication
104(1)
Understanding Readers from Various Cultures
105(8)
Individualism versus Collectivism: Valuing Either Individuals or Groups
105(3)
Separation of Business and Private Relationships
108(1)
Power Distance between Social Ranks
109(1)
Universal or Relative View of Truth
110(1)
Whether the Entire Message Is Contained in the Text
111(1)
Whether Uncertainty Is to Be Avoided or Accepted
112(1)
The Power and Value of Time
112(1)
Masculine versus Feminine
113(1)
Considering Culture in the Planning Process
113(3)
Example International Documents
116(4)
Writing Business Communications to Readers in Other Cultures
120(4)
Culture and Graphics
124(2)
Format Strategies in Other Cultures
126(2)
A Final Word
128(1)
Guides to Doing Business in Cultures around the World
128(4)
Exercises
132(3)
PART TWO Techniques
135(178)
Gathering, Evaluating, and Documenting Information
137(18)
Asking Productive Questions
138(1)
Looking for Answers
139(9)
Interviews
139(2)
Newsgroups
141(1)
World Wide Web
142(1)
Libraries
143(5)
Evaluating Answers
148(4)
Citing Sources
152(1)
Exercises
153(2)
Designing and Formatting Documents
155(48)
Understanding the Basics of Document Design
156(9)
Know What Decisions Are Yours to Make
156(1)
Choose a Design That Fits Your Situation
157(2)
Plan the Design from the Beginning
159(3)
Reveal the Design to the Readers
162(1)
Keep the Design Consistent
162(3)
Designing Effective Pages and Screens
165(6)
Use Blank Space to Frame and Group Information
166(3)
Space the Lines of Text for Easy Reading
169(1)
Set the Line Length for Easy Reading
170(1)
Use a Ragged Right Margin
170(1)
Choosing Readable Type
171(8)
Choose a Legible Type Size
172(1)
Choose a Font That Suits Your Document
173(1)
Use Special Typefaces Sparingly
174(1)
Use Highlighting Effectively
175(3)
Use a Mixture of Cases, Not All Capitals
178(1)
Use Color Cautiously and Consistently
178(1)
Helping Readers Locate Information
179(8)
Write Descriptive Headings
179(3)
Design Distinctive Headings
182(3)
Use Page Numbers and Headers or Footers
185(2)
Designing Web Sites
187(4)
Creating the Site
188(1)
Designing the Pages of the Site
189(1)
Maintaining the Site
190(1)
Testing Your Design
191(5)
Planning the Usability Test
192(1)
Conducting the Test
193(1)
Interpreting and Revising
193(3)
Exercises
196(7)
Creating and Managing Text
203(28)
Collecting and Grouping Information
204(1)
Planning Content Development
205(5)
Reports with Standard Arrangement Patterns
205(4)
Reports Designed for Specific Reader Needs
209(1)
Persuasive Arrangement and Development
209(1)
Strategies for Developing Content
210(8)
Organization and Content Development
218(5)
Other Types of Development
223(4)
Exercises
227(4)
Developing the Main Elements of Reports
231(36)
Prefatory Elements
232(12)
Letter of Transmittal
233(1)
Title Page
233(5)
Submission Page
238(1)
Table of Contents
238(6)
List of Illustrations
244(1)
Glossary and List of Symbols
244(1)
Abstracts and Summaries
244(11)
Informative Abstract
247(1)
Descriptive Abstract
248(1)
Summary
249(6)
Discussion or Body of the Report
255(3)
Parts of the Discussion
256(1)
Strategy for Presenting the Discussion
257(1)
Conclusion
258(1)
Recommendations
258(1)
Appendixes
258(1)
Online Reports
258(7)
Exercises
265(2)
Creating Tables and Figures
267(46)
Choosing Illustrations
268(10)
Consider Your Purpose
268(1)
Consider Your Audience
268(2)
Consider Your Audience Again
270(1)
Consider Your Purpose Again
271(7)
Creating Illustrations
278(21)
Designing Tables
283(1)
Designing Bar and Column Graphs
283(7)
Designing Circle Graphs (Pie Charts)
290(1)
Designing Line Graphs
291(1)
Designing Flowcharts
292(5)
Designing Diagrams
297(1)
Editing Photographs
297(2)
Designing Illustrations Ethically
299(9)
Exercises
308(5)
PART THREE Applications
313(260)
Planning Correspondence and E-Mail
315(26)
Determining Your Purpose
316(6)
Analyzing the Audience
322(1)
Composing Letters, Memos, and E-Mail
323(3)
Finding the Appropriate Style
326(4)
Direct versus Indirect Style
326(3)
Conversational Style
329(1)
Special Considerations for E-Mail
330(2)
Special Considerations for International Correspondence
332(3)
Keeping Copies of Correspondence
335(1)
Exercises
336(5)
Creating Reports for Any Occasion
341(34)
The Variable Nature of Reports
342(1)
Liability and Report Writing
343(1)
General Report Requirements
344(6)
Determining Report Structure
350(5)
Determining Internal Report Development
355(1)
Importance of the Introduction and Summary
355(14)
The Online Report
369(2)
The Slide/Visual Presentation Report
371(2)
Exercises
373(2)
Developing Analytical Reports: Recommendation Reports and Feasibility Studies
375(26)
Analytical Reports
377(7)
Recommendation Reports
384(3)
Feasibility Studies
387(8)
Purpose
389(6)
Environmental Impact Statements
395(2)
Exercises
397(4)
Developing Empirical Research Reports
401(26)
Major Sections of Empirical Research Reports
403(8)
Abstract
403(2)
Introduction and Literature Review
405(1)
Summary
405(2)
Materials and Methods
407(1)
Results
408(2)
Conclusion
410(1)
Acknowledgments and References
410(1)
Other Examples for Analysis and Comparison
411(14)
Example 1
411(2)
Example 2
413(5)
Example 3
418(7)
Exercises
425(2)
Writing Proposals and Progress Reports
427(48)
The Relationship between Proposals and Progress Reports
428(1)
Proposals
429(18)
The Context of Proposal Development
434(1)
Effective Argument in Proposal Development
435(1)
Standard Sections of Proposals
436(11)
Progress Reports
447(9)
Structure by Work Performed
447(7)
Structure by Chronological Order
454(1)
Structure by Main Project Goals
455(1)
Physical Appearance of Proposals and Progress Reports
456(1)
Style and Tone of Proposals and Progress Reports
456(3)
Other Forms of Proposals and Progress Reports
459(12)
Exercises
471(4)
Formulating Instructions, Procedures, and Policies
475(28)
Planning Instructions and Procedures
476(2)
Structure and Organization
478(2)
Introduction
478(2)
Theory Governing the Procedure or Instruction
480(2)
Warnings, Cautions, Hazards, and Notes Regarding Safety or Quality
480(2)
Conditions under Which the Task Is to Be Performed
482(3)
Steps in Performing the Task
485(3)
Name of Each Step
486(2)
Procedures
488(9)
Format Considerations for Instructions and Procedures
488(9)
Policies
497(4)
Procedures and Policy Manuals
498(3)
Exercises
501(2)
Writing Collaboratively
503(8)
Issues in Collaboration
504(1)
Value of Collaboration
504(1)
Techniques for Developing Collaborative Documents
505(2)
The On-site Collaborative Group
505(1)
The Distributed Collaborative Work Group
506(1)
The Lead Author Work Group
507(1)
Making Collaborative Projects Work
507(1)
Collaborative Projects in Action
508(1)
Exercises
509(2)
Preparing Oral Reports: The Basics
511(30)
Understanding the Speaking/Writing Relationship
512(1)
Analyzing the Audience
513(1)
Analyzing the Context
514(1)
Determining the Goal of Your Presentation
515(1)
Choosing and Shaping Content
516(1)
Deciding How to Arrange and Organize the Content
516(1)
Designing Each Segment: Guidelines
517(2)
Choose an Interesting Title
517(1)
Develop Your Presentation about Three Main Divisions
517(1)
Plan the Introduction Carefully
518(1)
Design the Body to Help People Comprehend Your Ideas
518(1)
Design the Conclusion to Reinforce Your Main Ideas
519(1)
Choosing an Appropriate Speaking Style
519(1)
Speaking to Multicultural Audiences
520(1)
Using Techniques to Enhance Audience Comprehension
520(6)
Planning Visuals to Enhance Your Purpose and Your Meaning
526(2)
Designing and Presenting the Written Paper
528(7)
Structuring the Written Speech
532(1)
Writing the Speech
532(1)
Practicing the Presentation
533(2)
Speaking Effectively: Practice, Practice, Practice
535(3)
Exercises
538(3)
Understanding the Strategies and Communications of the Job Search
541(32)
Preparation
542(6)
Self-Assessment
542(3)
Information Gathering
545(2)
Networking
547(1)
The Correspondence of the Job Search
548(15)
Letter of Application
548(4)
The Resume
552(9)
Follow-up Letters
561(2)
Interviewing
563(7)
The Interview
564(2)
Negotiation
566(1)
Before and after the Interview
567(3)
Exercises
570(3)
Appendix A. Handbook 573(32)
Index 605(10)
About the Authors 615(1)
Marking Symbols 616
Proofreader's Symbols inside back cover

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