WEEK THREE GUIDANCE ENG328 SCIENTIFIC AND TECHNICAL WRITING

OVERVIEW

In today’s digital age, very often the first image someone will have of you or of your company will be via a website. This week, you will consider what elements leave a positive first impression and you will also consider what to avoid when promoting yourself or your company online.

WEEK THREE DISCUSSIONS

  1. Online Technical Documents. 1st Post Due by Day 3. Online periodicals are quickly replacing the traditional paper magazines. Most professional organizations have free online periodicals that users can access. These publications provide a source of information for you to stay up to date with current trends in your field of study or career. Locate a professional online periodical or professional organization's website that relates to your career or future career. For example, students majoring in environmental studies can search for Environmental Science and Technology. Students majoring in education can search for the Journal of Teacher Education or ASCD. Business majors can search for the American Management Association or Talent Management. In other words, you can search for any career and find a professional journal. Review one online technical document related to your Final Project – Recommendation Report. Provide a summary of the article that you chose. Include the name of the article and the website cited in APA style and format. Critique the technical writing of the article. To sufficiently complete this task, you should ask several critical questions such as the following: Who is the editor of the periodical or creator of the website? Are they an expert in the given field? What is the periodical or website’s objective? What sort of articles or information does it include? Is the information presented refereed? What are the submission/publication guidelines for the material included? Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length. Support your claims with examples from required material(s) and/or other scholarly resources, and properly cite any references. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ posts by Day 7. Each response is required to meet or exceed 125 words.
  2. Web Design and Readability. 1st Post Due by Day 3. Organizing and designing web pages should start with a clear purpose and focus on the intended audience. Online readers expect speed and consistency and will quickly leave a site if it is difficult to navigate. Online readers prefer not to scroll horizontally and expect to easily find information from the site's homepage. Thus, technical writers need to write clear and concise content and create visually appealing websites. Too much text or flashy animations can be distracting for the reader, and too little creativity can make the site bland. Search the Internet for an example of a website that is well designed and one that is poorly designed. Provide the links to each site. Identify the characteristics that make the good design effective and efficient. Include readability, use of colors, font, and the overall design of the website. Next, identify why the second website is poorly designed and what criteria you used to make your determination. Explain how the poor design is distracting to the reader and how this affects the readability of the content. Then, explain how you would correct the website’s deficiencies. Make sure you include examples and ample details, and be sure the links that you share are academically appropriate. Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length. Support your claims with examples from required material(s) and/or other scholarly resources, and properly cite any references. Critique the evaluations of at least two of your classmates’ posts by Day 7. Each response is required to meet or exceed 125 words.

WEEK THREE QUIZ

Quiz. Due by Day 7. Complete the quiz on the assigned readings for Week Two.

WEEK THREE Assignment

1. Rough Draft of Final Project – Recommendation Report. Due by Day 7. The purpose of this assignment is to transform the planned “deliverables” (refer to pages 422-424 of the course textbook) from your Week One Proposal into the production of your Recommendation Report in a rough draft. This draft will provide an opportunity to integrate your understanding of how to use technical writing skills to advance a project from its inception to a well-designed and purposeful report that includes text, graphics, and scholarly research. The draft of your Recommendation Report should demonstrate your ability to apply course concepts to produce suggested solutions to a problem or issue of concern that you may experience in your current or future career (refer to pages 470-474 of the textbook). Continue to research the topic you chose in Week One and develop your Recommendation Report, based on your Week Two Outline. The report should show ongoing consideration of the primary and secondary audiences that you analyzed in Week One.

Your Recommendation Report draft should use effective headings and lists (if applicable). See pages 282-284 of the course text. Incorporate the planning, design, and writing processes learned in this course, and be sure to cite all sources in APA format.

Your rough draft this week should be four to five pages in length, exclusive of the title page, references page, glossary, and any other appendices. It should have at least one, but no more than three, well-placed, appropriately-sized graphics. The final and expanded version of your Recommendation Report (due Week Five) should be eight to ten pages in length, exclusive of title page, references page, glossary, and any other appendices. Use the sample Recommendation Report on pages 487-511 of the course text to help yourself get started and to help you make sure you are including all the appropriate sections (refer to page 492). You must include the following in your Final Project – Recommendation Report draft:

  • A title page (page 479).
  • An abstract (page 479).
  • A table of contents and corresponding page numbers (480-481). This table should closely correlate with subheadings, and figures in the body of the Recommendation Report.
  • A table of graphics/illustrations (page 483). This table should closely correlate with subheadings, and figures in the body of the Recommendation Report.
  • A one-page executive summary (pages 483-485).
  • Body, including an introduction (problem, solution, background, data sources, scope and limitation) that ends with a clear thesis statement or initiative to solve the identified problem, methods, results, conclusions, and recommendations (pages 476-478).
  • A concluding paragraph that restates the paper’s main ideas.
  • Glossary that provides a comprehensive overview of specialized terminology appearing in the Recommendation Report (pages 476, 484, 486-487).
  • Effective, useful, and properly cited graphic aids (maximum of three). For citation guidance, see pages 486-487.
  • References page in APA format (pages 620-632).
  • Include at least four sources (from Week One Assignment) in addition to the course textbook that are amply and appropriately cited in the text of the document and listed on the Reference page. Two sources must be scholarly journal articles from the Ashford University Library.

For information regarding APA style, visit the Ashford Writing Center.

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