Calendar

Technical Writing


Summer I, 2014

At a Glance

✓ Accept invitation to join the wiki and add a brief profile by midnight Thursday, May 29.
Cover Letter Revision Exercise due (to wiki) by midnight Friday, May 30.
Résumé Cover Letter or Statement Assignment due (to Collier) by midnight Wednesday, June 4.
Memo Revision Exercise due (to wiki) by midnight Friday, June 6.
Policy Memo Assignment due (to Collier) by midnight Wednesday, June 11.
Definitions Revision Exercise due (to wiki) by midnight Friday, June 13.
Process and Description Assignment due (to Collier) by midnight Wednesday, June 18.
Proposal Revision Exercise due (to wiki) and Informal Proposal due (to Collier) by midnight Friday, June 20.
Proposal Assignment due (to Collier) by midnight Wednesday, June 25.
Abstract Revision Exercise due (to wiki) by midnight Friday, June 27.
Wiki Article due (to wiki) by noon, Saturday July 5.
Wiki Response due (to wiki) by midnight Sunday, July 6.

May

T 27: "Welcome"
Our Tasks:
• Please read the "Getting Started" page.
• Please explore the course web site — focusing on the syllabus and the course calendar — our wiki, and our Scholar site.
• I will send you an invitation to join the wiki. Please respond to the invitation and add a profile by midnight on Thursday, May 29.
Our Goals:
To navigate easily our on-line resources.

W 28: "What is Technical Writing?"
Our Tasks:
• Please read the Résumé, Cover Letter or Statement Assignment.
• Please review "What is Technical Writing?" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
Supplemental Resources:
• If using Markel, please review Chapter 1 "Introduction to Technical Communication" (pgs. 2-16).
• Please review Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 in Chapter 1, "Scientific and Technical Communication in Context", in the E-Text.
• For background, see "Perceptions and Practices: A Survey of Professional Engineers and Architects", 2011, Don Cunningham and Jill Stewart.
• A nice overview of Technical Communication from Jim Lipuma of the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT).
Technical writing overview from Wikiversity.
• A rather more musical Introduction to Technical Writing.
• If curiosity or time permit, take a look at "Seeing and Believing: The Experimental Production of Scientific Facts" (from Shapin and Schaffer, Leviathan and the Air-Pump: Hobbes, Boyle and the Experimental Life, 1985, Chapter 2, pgs. 22-79.)
Our Goals:
To have a working knowledge of the parameters of technical writing and technical communication.

H 29: "Application Packages: Cover Letters, Personal Statements, Part I"
Our Tasks:
Please accept the invitation to join the wiki and add your profile to the wiki by midnight.
• Please read the Cover Letter Revision Exercise.
• Please read the Cover Letter Workshop; Cover Letters 1: Quick Tips; Cover Letters 2: Preparing to Write a Cover Letters; and Cover Letters 3: Writing Your Cover Letter from the Purdue OWL.
• Please review Cover letters: types and samples from Career Services at Virginia Tech.
• Please review "Cover Letters" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
• If writing a personal statement, please review Writing the Personal Statement all sections (1-4) from the Purdue OWL.
Supplemental Resources:
• If using Markel, please review Chapter 15 "Writing Job-Application Materials" (pgs. 398-438).
• Please review Chapter 10, "Job Finding Materials", concentrating on the cover letters section, in the E-Text.
• A humorous, but rather instructive Howcast.
• Please consult All About the Graduate Admissions Essay (from About.com).
Our Goals:
To have a familiarity with cover letter or personal statement structure and purpose.

F 30: "Application Packages: Cover Letters, Personal Statements, Part II"
Our Tasks:
Cover Letter Revision Exercise due no later than midnight. Please post your exercise to the appropriate forum on the wiki.
• Please read "Business Correspondence—Application Letters" in David McMurrey's text.
• Please review "Cover Letter Style" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
• If writing a personal statement, please review Personal Statements and Application Letters (from Indiana University's Writing Tutorial Services).
Supplemental Resources:
Model Letters for Various Purposes.
Our Goals:
To have a detailed understanding of cover letter or personal statement structure and purpose.



June

M 2: "Application Packages: Traditional Résumés, Part I"
Our Tasks:
• Please read Résumé Design and Resumes 1: Introduction to Resumes from the Purdue OWL.
• Please review "Traditional Résumés" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
Supplemental Resources:
• If using Markel, please review Chapter 15 "Writing Job-Application Materials" (pgs. 398-425).
• Please review Chapter 10, "Job Finding Materials" in the E-Text concentrating on the résumé section;
Resume Elements (Jim Lipuma, NJIT).
Résumé Pro: How to Write an Effective Résumé.
Your Super Creative Resume Is Making Me Sad.
• Another humorous, but rather instructive Howcast.
Writing Your Resume.
Our Goals:
To have a familiarity with résumé structure and purpose.

T 3: "Application Packages: Traditional Résumés, Part II"
Our Tasks:
• Please read all sections in (1-3) Resumes 2: Resume Sections; Resumes 3: When to Use Two Pages or More; and sections 1-2 of Resumes 4: Scannable Resumes from the Purdue OWL.
• Please review the résumé samples (bottom of the page) from Tech's Career Services web site.
Supplemental Resources:
• Please review "Business Correspondence and Resumes" in David McMurrey's text.
How to Upload or Email a Resume.
Electronic Resumes, Getting Past the Gatekeeper — The Art and Science of Resume Writing.
Our Goals:
To have a detailed understanding of résumé structure and purpose.

W 4: "Policy Memoranda"
Our Tasks:
The Résumé, Cover Letter or Statement Assignment is due by midnight. Please email the assignment to me as either a .doc or .docx file.
• Please read the Policy Memo Assignment.
• Please review Tips on Writing a Policy Memo.
Supplemental Resources:
• If using Markel, please review Chapter 14 "Writing Correspondence" (pgs. 370-397).
The Craft of Memo Writing (PDF; Bob Behn, Harvard)
Policy Memo (PDF; from Duke)
Writing effective policy memos (PDF; from MIT)
• Business Writing Tips: How to Write a Policy Memo.
• Examples of Policy Memos from the California Department of Transportation.
Our Goals:
To orient ourselves to the policy memo assignment and to have a sense the structure and purpose of policy memos.

H 5: "Policy Memo: Memo Structure"
Our Tasks:
• Please read the Memo Revision Exercise.
• Please read all sections (1-4) of Memo Writing from The OWL at Purdue.
• Please review "Memos and Workplace Privacy" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
Supplemental Resources:
• Please review the section on Memorandums in Chapter 9, "Correspondence", in the E-Text.
Letters, Memos, Emails (Jim Lipuma, NJIT).
• The Key Forms of Business Writing: Basic Memo.
• The Key Forms of Business Writing: E-Mail.
Our Goals:
To know proper memorandum and e-mail structure.

F 6: "Policy Memo: Considering Workplace Policies"
Our Tasks:
Memo Revision Exercise due no later than midnight. Please post your exercise to the appropriate forum on the wiki.
• Please review Workplace Fairness: news and issues.
• Please review The National Workrights Institute.
Supplemental Resources:
HR Management: Ethics & Fairness.
Employee Handbook.
• Please consult The Employee Handbook.
• Please consult Policies, Handbooks: Samples and Examples.
Our Goals:
To gain a sense of the issues concerning workplace fairness in developing policy memos.




M 9: "Policy Memo: Workplace Privacy"
Our Tasks:
• Please review Employee Monitoring: Is There Privacy in the Workplace? (referred to in "Memos and Workplace Privacy" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar).
• Please review EPIC Workplace Privacy Page
Supplemental Resources:
Computer and Information Ethics.
Privacy in the workplace: What can the employer monitor?
Workplace Privacy Rights Preview
Who Owns Your E-mail?
2007 Electronic Monitoring & Surveillance Survey.
Workplace Privacy and Employee Monitoring
Our Goals:
To gain a sense of the issues concerning privacy in, and related to, the workplace in developing policy memos.

T 10: "Process and Description: Writing Process Descriptions"
Our Tasks:
• Please read the Process and Description Assignment
• Please read Definitions, Descriptions, and Instructions: Chapter 8: Part 1 in the E-Text.
• Please review Instructions and Process Descriptions (Jim Lipuma, NJIT).
• Please review "Instructions" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
Supplemental Resources:
• If using Markel, please review Chapter 20 "Writing Definitions, Descriptions and Instructions" (pgs. 563-597).
Writing a Process Description
Our Goals:
To orient ourselves to the process and description assignment and to have a sense the structure and purpose of process descriptions and instructions.

W 11: "Process and Description: Expanded Definitions"
Our Tasks:
The Policy Memo is due by midnight. Please email the assignment to me as either a .doc or .docx file.
• Please read the Process and Description Assignment
• Please read the Definitions Revision Exercise
• Please read Writing Definitions from the Purdue OWL.
• Please review Definitional Techniques.
Supplemental Resources:
Definition Rules (Jim Lipuma, NJIT).
Making Definitions: Valid vs. Good (Jim Lipuma).
Our Goals:
To understand the role of definitions in technical writing.

H 12: "Process and Description: Analyzing Metaphor"
Our Tasks:
• Please read the Definitions Revision Exercise.
• Please review "How to Communicate with a Non-Technical Audience."
• Please review "Geeks: how to write for a non-technical audience."
• Please review "What's a Metaphor For?" (PDF; 146 KB) (Carlin Romano, The Chronicle of Higher Education).
• Please review this excerpt from Metaphors We Live By (George Lakoff).
• Please review "Metaphor and War, Again" (George Lakoff).
Supplemental Resources:
Idea Framing, Metaphors, and Your Brain - George Lakoff
Authors@Google: George Lakoff
Our Goals:
To understand the role of metaphor and framing in technical writing.

F 13: "Process and Description: Analyzing Instructions"
Our Tasks:
Definitions Revision Exercise due no later than midnight. Please post your exercise to the appropriate forum on the wiki.
• Please review Instructions: How to Write for Busy, Grouchy People and Instructions — Top 5 Tips
• Please review Online Technical Writing: Instructions in David McMurrey's text.
Supplemental Resources:
• Please review Definitions, Descriptions, and Instructions: Chapter 8: Part 2 in the E-Text.
• Using Instructions: NJIT Technical Writing Class - Lego Assignment
Our Goals:
To have a working knowledge of the elements, structures and purposes of instructions.




M 16: "Proposals"
Our Tasks:
• Please read the Proposal Assignment.
• Please read the Informal Proposal Assignment.
• Please review "Proposal Elements" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
• Please review "Proposals" (Jim Lipuma).
Supplemental Resources:
• If using Markel, please review Chapter 16 "Writing Proposals" (pgs. 439-465).
• Academic Writing Tips: How to Write a Proposal.
Our Goals:
To orient ourselves to the proposal assignment and to have a sense the structure and purpose of proposals.

T 17: "Proposals: The Research Proposal, Part I"
Our Tasks:
• Please review Grants.gov
• Please review NSF Publication: A Guide for Proposal Writing (either HTML or PDF formats)
• Please review Guide for Writing a Funding Proposal
• Please review Chapter 11, Part 1 and Part 2 in the E-Text;
Supplemental Resources:
How to Get Government Grants
• Writing Tips: How to Write a Research Proposal
Our Goals:
To have a working knowledge of aim and structure of research proposals.

W 18: "Proposals: The Research Proposal, Part II"
Our Tasks:
The Process and Description Assignment is due by midnight. Please email the assignment to me as either a .doc or .docx file..
• Please read Online Technical Writing: Proposals in David McMurrey's text.
Supplemental Resources:
• Please consult Proposal Development Toolkits and Resources. (UMass)
• Writing Lessons: How to Write a Research Grant
Our Goals:
To have a developing knowledge of research proposals.

H 19: "Proposals: Proposals to Non-Profits"
Our Tasks:
• Please read the Proposal Revision Exercise.
• Please review Non-Profit Guides
• Please review Nonprofit Fundraising and Grantwriting.
• Please review Grants for Nonprofits: Government Funding.
Supplemental Resources:
Grant Writing Made Easy.
• Writing Lessons: Education of a Grant Writer.
Our Goals:
To consider the particular framework of crafting proposals to non-profits.

F 20: "Proposals: The Funding of Science and Technology, Part I"
Our Tasks:
Proposal Revision Exercise due no later than midnight. Please post your exercise to the appropriate forum on the wiki.
Informal Proposal is due by midnight. Please email the assignment to me as either a .doc or .docx file.
• Please read the Summary, Chapter 1, Chapter 3 and review the entirety of "Science — The Endless Frontier" (by Vannevar Bush).
• Please review "Proposals: Science's Social Contract" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
Supplemental Resources:
Neil deGrasse Tyson Testifies Before Senate Science Committee, March 7, 2012.
In Defense of Science Funding - Brian Cox
Science, The Endless Frontier: The Continuing Relevance of Vannevar Bush. Shirley Ann Jackson (talk starts at 23:10).
Grant Writing Training
Global Warming, funding the Science
Our Goals:
To become familiar with the financial relationship between science and the state.




M 23: "Proposals: The Funding of Science and Technology, Part II"
Our Tasks:
• Please review "End Government Science Funding" (by Terence Kealey).
• Please review "Who Should Pay for Science? (by John Staddon).
Supplemental Resources:
• The Myth of Science as a Public Good: Part 1; Part 2; Part 3.
John Staddon rebuts myths about the social costs of smoking.
AAAS - Science and Public Policy (American Association for the Advancement of Science).
Mae Jemison Speaks About Government Funding of Science.
Our Goals:
To consider debates regarding the public and/or private funding of science and technology.

T 24: "Wiki Article: Abstracts"
Our Tasks:
• Please review Writing Report Abstracts from Purdue OWL.
• Please review Online Technical Writing: Abstracts from David McMurray's text.
• Please consult Abstracts (by John December and Susan Katz).
• Please review "Titles and Abstracts" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
Supplemental Resources:
• If using Markel, please review Chapter 18 "Writing Lab Reports" (pgs. 494-495) and Chapter 19 "Writing Recommendation Reports" (pg. 512-514).
Writing Guide: Writing Abstracts.
Abstracts
Writing an Informative Abstract (American Sociological Association).
Our Goals:
To become familiar with the structure and purpose of abstracts.

W 25: "Wiki Article: Wiki Writing"
Our Tasks:
The Proposal Assignment is due by midnight. Please email the assignment to me as either a .doc or a .docx file.
• Please review "Writing Better Articles" from Wikipedia.
• Please review "How to Write a Wikipedia Article."
Supplemental Resources:
"How To Write an Article for Wikipedia."
"How to Create a Wikipedia Article."
Our Goals:
To understand the protocol for writing for Wikipedia and a structure for mass collaborative writing.

H 26: "Wiki Article: Scientific and Technological Controversies, I"
Our Tasks:
• Please read the Abstract Revision Exercise.
• Please examine the Mapping Controversies concentrating on the Controversy Types and Case Studies sections of the site.
• Please review "Scientific and Technological Controversies" a PowerPoint presentation available on the Resources section of Scholar.
Supplemental Resources:
• Controversies in Science — In the Beginning — Explanations from Science and Religion: Part 1; Part 2; Part 3; Part 4; Part 5; Part 6.
Our Goals:
To gain a working knowledge of how scientific and technological controversies are defined and studied.

F 27: "Wiki Article: Scientific and Technological Controversies, II"
Our Tasks:
Abstract Revision Exercise due no later than midnight. Please post your exercise to the appropriate forum on the wiki.
• Please review The globalisation of scientific controversy (Brian Martin).
• Please review Scientific knowledge, controversy, and public decision-making (Brian Martin and Evelleen Richards).
• Please review Brian Martin: publications on scientific and technological controversies.
Our Goals:
To consider additional examples scientific and technological controversies and public decision-making.




M 30: "Wiki Article: Scientific Controversies, III"
Our Tasks:
• Please read the Wiki Response assignment.
• Please review "What Does A Real Scientific Controversy Look Like?" (Gary Herstein).
• Please review "The Dynamics Of Scientific Controversies" (Pamela J. Hines).
Supplemental Resources:
Scientific controversies (from Wikipedia).
Our Goals:
To examine scientific and technological controversies.

July

T 1: "Wiki Article: Preparation"
Our Tasks:
• Please take this time to consult with your group and work on the wiki article.
Our Goals:
To work in our groups to develop the wiki article.

W 2: "Wiki Article: Preparation"
Our Tasks:
• Please take this time to consult with your group and work on the wiki article.
Our Goals:
To work in our groups to develop the wiki article.

H 3: "Wiki Article: Preparation"
Our Tasks:
• Please take this time to consult with your group and work on the wiki article.
Our Goals:
To work in our groups to develop the wiki article.

F 4: Independence Day Observed. No Classes.

S 5: "Wiki Article: Realized"
Our Tasks:
Wiki Article due no later than noon. Please post your article to the wiki.
Our Goals:
To complete the wiki article.

SU 6: "Wiki Article: Response"
Our Tasks:
Wiki Response due no later than midnight.
Please go to the wiki and provide comments or revisions on articles that you have not helped author.
Our Goals:
To respond to the wiki article of your choosing.

Well Done!