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Dr. Kristi Siegel

Assistant Professor, English
Mount Mary College
Milwaukee, WI 53222
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EPW Technical Writing 331 - Accelerated
  Spring 2002
  Tuesdays 6:00-9:50 pm
   Smart Classroom - 2nd Floor, Haggerty Library
   Office: Fidelis 223, ext. 461
   Office Hours: Tuesdays, 4:00 - 5:50 pm and by appointment

Required: Gerson, Sharon J. and Steven M. Gerson. Technical
                Writing: Process and Product
, 3rd Ed.  Upper Saddle
                River: Prentice Hall, 2000.
Recommended: 
A good dictionary
A good grammar handbook and/or
The Associated Press Stylebook
A basic handbook on FrontPage 2000/web publishing
A pocket folder to hold my endless handouts!

Course Objectives:
to understand the purpose and process of technical writing;
to produce documents reflecting different types of technical
  communication such as technical descriptions, proposals, reports,
  web pages, and instructional manuals;
to use mechanically and grammatically correct language in written
  and oral communication;
to learn how to adjust technical content to meet the needs of a specific target
  audience;
to learn how to produce clear and concise prose;
to appreciate principles of document design and how they enhance meaning;
to give a professional oral presentation on the final project (web site).

Grading:
~In-Class Assignments - 15%
~Instructions, Manual, Proposal, Report - 40%
~Website - 15%
~Oral Presentation - 10%
~Participation - 10%
~Final Portfolio - 10%
Class Schedule

Before Mar 19
Read (skim) first four chapters of text, pp. 1-85; focus particularly on definition
and types of technical writing, methods for achieving clarity, and determining
audience

Assignments:
Be prepared to discuss reading for first class (Mar 19). 
Bring in one example of technical writing for first class.

                                         ****************************************************************

Week 1 - Mar 19
Orientation and Introductions
Discussion of syllabus and scope of course
Definition of technical writing and types of technical writing
"Chopping block" of tech writing: clarity and audience
Basic word processing shortcuts and techniques
**Speedy Beginnings with Word 97/2000 -
Warpspeed1.doc
**Speedy Editing with Word 97/2000 -
Warpspeed2.doc
**Speedy Formatting with Word 97/2000 -
Warpspeed3.doc
-Design principles - in class exercise
**Basic Principles of Document design -
Document design.doc

Assignments:
Read Chapters 8 and 9
Bring in example of good technical design and example of poor
  technical design for next class (be prepared to explain why examples
  are good or poor).

                                         ***************************************************************

Week 2 - Mar 26
Visual design and Graphics - in-class work and assignments
**Summary Design Document -
Summarydesign.doc
**Memo _Re-design exercise -
Wasson.doc
Narrative strategies for writing technical content (in-class exercises and
assignments)
**How to Put Your Reader into a Coma without Really Trying (
Eliminating
  Wordiness.doc)
-Lego Block assignment explained -
Legoassignment.doc

Assignments:
Read Chapters 11 & 12
Lego Block assignment due on Apr 9

                                         ***************************************************************
Apr 2 - Easter Break

                                         ***************************************************************

Week 3 - Apr 9

Lego Block presentations
Principles of technical descriptions and instructions (in-class exercises
  and assignment)
**Structural and Functional Partitioning  -
assignment
**Effective Technical Descriptions - Technicaldescription.doc
Instructional Chapter/manual assignment explained - in-class work and
  discussion
-
FullShot 7 Instructions
- Progress/Status Report explained and assigned. -
ProgressReport.doc

Assignments:
Read Chapters 13 & 14
Status Report on Instruction Manual due Apr 16
Instructional Chapter/Manual due Apr 23

                                         ***************************************************************
Week 4 - Apr 16
Types of reports explained and discussed (in-class exercises and
   assignments).
In-class work on Instruction manuals
Principles of proposal writing
In-class work on
Web site Proposal
Status Report on Instructions' Manual collected
- Sign up for GeoCities web site

Assignments:
Read handout on
website design.
-
Website Manual - Tutorial on PageBuilder and FrontPage
Read Internet links on website design and construction.
Instruction manual due next class (Apr 23)

                                         ***************************************************************
Week 5 - Apr 23
Proposals and Grants (cont.)
Instruction Manuals collected
In-class exercises and assignments
In-class work on Website Proposal
In-class work on Web pages - design, techniques, and writing effective
  web text
-
Oral Presentation assigned

Assignments:
Web site proposal due Apr 30
Read suggested Internet Links

                                         **************************************************************

Week 6 - Apr 30
Discussion of Website Proposals
In-class work on webpages
In-class work and discussion on presenting effective oral communication
  film on effective oral presentations
- Explanation of Final Portfolio

Assignments:
Read Chapter 17

                                         **************************************************************

Week 7 - May 7
In-class work on websites
In-class work on oral presentations
- In-class work on final portfolios

Assignments:
Complete website, oral presentation and final portfolio for
May 14

                                         **************************************************************

Week 8 - May 14
Oral Presentation on Website
Assessments of Oral presentations
Task Analysis
Final Portfolios collected



Additional Links:

~
Basic HTML Tutorial (by Dr. Joe Burns)
~
How to Build Lame Websites (this website, developed by Charlie Morris,
  offers some very true--and funny--advice on website design and
  content)
~
Glossary of Internet Terms
~1,000 Free Internet Web Publishing Tools (e.g., clipart, fonts,
  animation, etc.)
~
Web Style Guide

Homepage