- Don’t forget your Tech Journal Post due at 6:00pm!!!
- Finish Sentence Clarity
- Prose Revision Assignment Due on Tuesday, 7/18
- Euphemisms and Topic Sentences
- Set of Instructions Due Wednesday, 7/19–notice how quick this is due
- Consider starting I, Robot
Preview Set of Instructions Assignment
Your Set of Instructions Assignment is due on Wednesday (7/19). Remember that a summer term has tight deadlines. Let’s discuss that by going to the Major Assignments page.
Overview for Revising Prose
Refining our prose takes lots of time and won’t happen overnight. The first thing to do is to actually re-read your work. Don’t try to edit right away; instead, try to figure out what the sentence (or paragraph) is about. What is the author trying to communicate.
Back to Prose Revision
We are going to begin our sentence-level exercises. These “lessons” are for you to carry with you for the rest of the term.
Word Choice ‘Fun’
Is “Funner” a word?
How do we determine if something is a word or not? The reading (Tebeaux & Dragga Ch. 4) gives you some do’s and don’t’s for word choice (pp. 59- 61), but why do some words work and others don’t?
Don’t ever let theory get in the way of real world contexts and your own common sense. Click below for the scanned dictionary entries:
Words scanned from Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary. 10th ed. Springfield, MA: Merriam-Webster, 1999. p. 472 and p. 1194, respectively.
Chapters 4 and 7 Tebeaux and Dragga
These two chapters are foundational chapters–they have basic information on revision and types of documents used for communication. Obviously, we’ll refer to Ch. 4 over the next few days, but Ch. 7 is one that should be in your minds throughout the semester. We won’t go page-by-page (unless I think there wasn’t enough reading…), but we will address the concerns Ch. 7 brings up throughout the term.
Chapter 4 in Tebeaux and Dragga
As I mentioned, these chapters have basic information on revision and types of documents used for communication. Our class activities cover a good portion of the chapters, but we’re not going page by page reviewing each detail. Of course, you are suppose to read, and reading is good for your Midterm and Final Exams.
I do want us to focus on a couple of places in Ch. 4, so pull out your books and let’s illuminate the following:
- p. 61 (3rd) p. 49 (2nd)–Style is specific to the preferences of an organization, so organizational culture will determine style
- p. 61 (3rd) p. 49 (2nd)–Conciseness (or concision) vs. Brevity
- Concise: “An organization’s culture guides its style preference.”
- Brevity: “Org culture prefers specific style.”
- p. 63 (3rd) p. 51 (2nd)–Characteristics of good and bad writing
- Really, we should say “effective” and “ineffective writing.”
- What’s the purpose of technical writing?
- pp. 71-73 (3rd) pp. 59-61 (2nd)–Word choices for clear, concise prose.
- Why are those words under “business jargon” on p. 73 (3rd) p. 61 (2nd)?
- Obviously, we’ll refer to Ch. 4 over the next few days, but Ch. 7 is one that should be in your minds throughout the semester. We won’t go page-by-page (unless I think there wasn’t enough reading…), but we will address the concerns Ch. 7 brings up throughout the term.
Chapter 7 Tebeaux and Dragga
Even though there is overlap between Technical and Business Writing (why we often use “Professional” Writing/Communication to refer to both), we’re not trying to replicate a business writing class. Much of the content of Ch. 7 would be thoroughly examined in a business writing class, so we’re not going to spend too much class time on it. However, I want us to focus on a couple of places in Ch. 7, so pull out your books and let’s illuminate the following:
- pp. 157-159 (3rd) pp. 134-136 (2nd)–Tone doesn’t carry well in e-mail because the reader doesn’t have voice or body language cues.
- A brief acting lesson…
- p. 159 (3rd) p. 136(2nd)–Good list of questions for thinking (critically) about audience and purpose.
Homework and Future Work
We’ll most likely continue these lessons if we haven’t finished them tomorrow. Before Monday (7/17), read Ch. 5 & 10 in Tebeaux & Dragga and preview your Set of Instructions assignment.
Your Prose Revision assignment (three paragraphs) is due on Tuesday (7/18).