ENGL 230 - Technical Writing

Technical Writing examines how to communicate technical information and knowledge in a concise, logical, accurate, and accessible manner. The course covers the following topics: writing reports, proposals, and instructions; analyzing the audience and setting goals; adjusting style and tone based on audience; writing collaboratively; evaluating and documenting sources; designing print documents; working with graphics; understanding ethical and legal obligations; delivering oral presentations.


Credits:  3


Hours: 45 (Lecture Hours: 45)


Total Weeks:  15


ENGL 110 or ENGL 100 or permission of the Instructor; CPSC 101 is strongly recommended


Non-Course Prerequisites:
Skilled at using presentation and word processing software




Course Content:
Introduction to Technical Communication
- Characteristics of a Technical Document
- Measures of Excellence in Technical Documents
- Successful Communication
- Writing Technical Documents
Ethical and Legal Obligations
- Moral Standards
- Fair Use and Copyright Questions
- Plagiarism
- Social Media
Writing Collaboratively
- Advantages and Disadvantages
- Managing Projects
- Conducting Meetings
- Electronic Tools
- Gender and Culture
- Team Charter
Audience and Purpose
- Communicating Across Cultures
Researching Your Subject
- Secondary and Primary Research
- Evaluating Information
- Interviews and Questionnaires
Goals of Document Design
- Design Principles, Designing Print and Online Documents
- Analyzing Online-Document Designs
Effective Graphics
- Types of Graphics
- Planning, Creating Graphics
Writing Proposals
- Types of Proposals
- Deliverables
- Persuasion Structure
- Budgets
Writing Informational Reports
- Directives
- Field Reports
- Progress and Status Reports
- Incident Reports
Writing Recommendation Reports
- Problem-Solving Model
- Body, Front Matter, Back Matter
Writing Definitions
- Writing Descriptions and Instructions
Preparing and Analyzing Oral Presentations


Learning Outcomes:
- Distinguish technical writing from other forms of writing in terms of purpose and style
- Communicate technical information and knowledge in a concise, logical, and meticulous fashion
- Write for both specialized and non-specialized audiences
- Research and document complex technical data
- Create reports, proposals, and how-to documents
- Utilize charts, tables, flowcharts, and other graphic elements
- Understand collaborative writing and document control
- Deliver professional and informative oral presentations
- Assess the reliability of information such as web sites, journals, and news outlets
- Identify legal, copyright, and accessibility obligations
- Adhere to the highest professional and ethical standards


Grading System:  Letters


Passing Grade: D (50%)


Percentage of Individual Work: 95


Percentage of Group Work: 5


Textbooks are subject to change.  Please contact the bookstore at your local campus for current book lists.