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Technical Communication Strategies for Today


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Table of Contents


Chapter 1 Communicating in the Workplace How Important is Technical Communication? What is Technical Communication? Technical Communication: Actions, Words, Images Technical Communication is Interactive and Adaptable Technical Communication is Reader Centered Technical Communication Relies on Teamwork Technical Communication is Visual Technical Communication Has Ethical, Legal, and Political Dimensions Technical Communication Is International and Cross Cultural Your Career and Technical Communication Help: How to Learn New Software Quickly Exercises and Projects
Chapter 2 Readers and Context of Use Profiling Your Readers Identifying Your Readers Profiling Your Readers' Needs, Values, and Attitudes Help: Profiling Readers with Search Engines Profiling Contexts of Use Identifying the Context of Use International and Cross-Cultural Communication Differences in Context Difference in Organization Differences in Style Differences in Design Listen and Learn: The Key to International and Cross-Cultural Communication Exercises and Projects
Chapter 3 Working in Teams The Stages of Teaming Forming: Strategic Planning Step 1: Define the Project Mission and Objectives Step 2: Identify Project Outcomes Step 3: Define Team Member Responsibilities Step 4: Create a Project Calendar Step 5: Write Out a Work Plan Step 6: Agree on How Conflicts will be Resolved Storming: Managing Conflict Running Effective Meetings Mediating Conflicts Firing a Team Member Norming: Determining Team Roles Revising Objectives and Outcomes Help: Virtual Teaming Identifying Team Roles Using Groupware to Facilitate Work Performing: Improving Quality The Keys to Teaming Exercises and Projects
Chapter 4 Ethics in the Technical Workplace
What are Ethics? Where do Ethics Come From? Personal Ethics Social Ethics Conservation Ethics Help: Stopping Cyberbullying and Computer Harassment Resolving Ethical Dilemmas Confronting an Ethical Dilemma Resolving an Ethical Dilemma When You Disagree with the Company Copyright Law in Technical Communication Asking Permission Copyrighting Your Work Plagiarism Exercises and Projects
Chapter 5 Starting Your Career Setting Goals, Making a Plan Setting Goals Using a Variety of Job-Seeking Paths Preparing a Resume Types of Resumes Chronological Resume Functional Resume Designing the Resume Help: Designing a Scannable/Searchable Resume Writing Effective Application Letters Content and Organization Style Revising and Proofreading the Resume and Letter Creating a Professional Portfolio Collecting Materials Organizing Your Portfolio Assembling the Portfolio in a Binder Creating and Electronic Portfolio Interviewing Strategies Preparing for the Interview At the Interview Writing Thank You Letters and/or E-mails Exercises and Projects


Chapter 6 Researching and Managing Information
Beginning Your Research Defining Your Research Subject Narrowing Your Research Question Formulating a Research Question or Hypothesis Developing a Research Methodology Mapping Out a Methodology Describing Your Methodology Using and Revising Your Methodology Triangulating Materials Using Electronic Sources Using Print Sources Using Empirical Sources Managing Information and Taking Notes Managing Information Careful Note Taking Documenting Sources Help: Avoiding Junk Science on the Internet Appraising Your Information Is the Source Reliable? How Biased is the Source? Am I Biased? Is the Source Up to Date? Can the Information Be Verified? Avoiding Plagiarism Exercises and Projects
Chapter 7 Designing Documents and Interfaces Five Principles of Design Design Principle 1: Balance Weighting a Page or Screen Using Grids to Balance a Page Layout Using Other Balance Techniques Design Principle 2: Alignment Design Principle 3: Grouping Using Headings Using Borders and Rules Design Principle 4: Consistency Choosing Typefaces Labeling Graphics Creating Sequential and Nonsequential Lists Inserting Headers and Footers Help: Using Styles and Templates Design Principle 5: Contrast Adding Shading and Background Color Highlighting Text Using Font Size and Line Length Cross-Cultural Design Exercises and Projects
Chapter 8 Creating and Using Graphics Guidelines for Using Graphics Guideline One: A Graphic Should Tell a Simple Story Guideline Two: A Graphic Should Reinforce the Written Text, Not Replace It Guideline Three: A Graphic Should be Ethical Guideline Four: A Graphic Should be Labeled and Placed Properly Displaying Data with Graphs, Tables, and Charts Line Graphs Bar Charts Tables Pie Charts Gantt Charts Using Pictures, Drawings, and Screen Shots Photographs Help: Making Visuals with a Spreadsheet Program Inserting Photographs and Other Images Illustrations Screen Shots Using Cross-Cultural Symbols Exercises and Projects
Chapter 9 Websites and Social Networking (Web 2.0) Creating a Website Planning and Researching a Website Organizing and Drafting the Website Using Style in a Website Designing the Website Help: Using Web-Authoring Software A Warning about Copyright and Plagiarism Websites for International and Cross-Cultural Readers Using Social Networking (Web 2.0) Starting a Social Networking Site Blogging and Microblogging Updating Videos and Podcasts Contributing to a Wiki Exercises and Projects
Chapter 10 Preparing and Giving Presentations Choosing the Right Presentation Technology Organizing the Content of Your Presentation Building the Presentation The Introduction: Tell Them What You're Going to Tell Them Help: Giving Presentations with Your iPod, MP3, PDA, or Smartphone The Body: Tell Them The Conclusion: Tell Them What You Told Them Preparing to Answer Questions Choosing Your Presentation Style Creating Visuals Designing Visual Aids Using Graphics Slides to Avoid Delivering the Presentation Body Language Voice, Rhythm, and Tone Using Your Notes Practicing and Rehearsing Practice, Practice, Practice Rehearse, Rehearse, Rehearse Working Cross-Culturally with Translators Exercises and Projects


Chapter 11 Letters, Memos, and E-Mail Basic Features of Letters and Memos Basic Features of E-Mail Planning and Researching a Correspondence Determining the Rhetorical Situation Organizing and Drafting Letters, Memos, and E-Mails Introduction with a Purpose and a Main Point Body that Provides Need-to-Know Information Conclusion that Restates the Main Point Types of Letters, Memos, and E-Mails Inquiries Responses Transmittal Letters and Memos Claims or Complaints Adjustments Refusals Using Style in Letters, Memos, and E-Mails Strategies for Developing an Appropriate Style Designing and Formatting Letters and Memos Formatting Letters Formatting Envelopes Formatting Memos Help: Using E-Mail Internationally Revising, Editing, and Proofreading Exercises and Projects
Chapter 12 Technical Descriptions
Basic Features of Technical Descriptions Planning and Researching Technical Descriptions Planning Addressing ISO 9000/ISO 14000 Issues Researching Partitioning the Subject Organizing and Drafting Technical Descriptions Specific and Precise Title Introduction with an Overall Description Description by Features, Functions, or Stages in a Process Description by Senses, Similes, Analogies, and Metaphors Conclusion Using Style in Technical Descriptions Designing Technical Descriptions Designing a Page Layout Using Graphics Revising, Editing, and Proofreading Revising for Conciseness Help: Using Digital Photography in Descriptions Editing and Proofreading for Accuracy Exercises and Projects

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