a quick lecture on technical writing

Subject: a quick lecture on technical writing
From: Becca <becca_price -at- yahoo -dot- com>
To: tech2wr-l <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 1 Sep 2013 08:45:32 -0700 (PDT)

I've been doing some technical writing for a professor at a small college in Vermont. While it's basically a military college, there are lots of civilians there too. This particular professor's students will be going into the military, into law enforcement, into intelligence (he teaches cyber forensics), into the consulting world - and therefore will be writing lots and lots of reports.

The English program at this school has one course in business writing, but it sounds like it's a pretty light-weight class - the example of some of the homework my professor friend gave me is to write a letter to a neighbor complaining about a noisy dog.

This is not going to help my friends get ready for all the report writing they're going to have to do.

My professor friend has asked me to put together a 1-1.5 hour presentation that I can give to his students about technical writing. I've got some basic rules that I like to use as my own guidelines (ABCâsâaccuracy, brevity, and clarity. 3Cs: Concise, coherent, and complete.), and I know the report format that my professor friend prefers, so I can speak to that, explain some of the things that should be in each of the sections of his suggested format. I'm also thinking about speaking about Word styles and why you should love them and use them.

What else should I include? How do you teach technical writing to a bunch of kids in an hour or an hour and a half?

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