Technical Communication (5Th Edition)

Article excerpt

COMMUNICATING INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY: HAVING THE RIGHT STUFF Technical Communication (5th Edition) Rebecca E. Burnett. Orlando: Harcourt College Publishers, 2001. xx+736pp., User hand book, Index . ISBN 0-15-506448-7

The ability to communicate effectively is the cornerstone of a civilized people. The ability to do so in writing is the fabric of noteworthy expression that determines the personal and professional destiny of the society. Rebecca E. Burnett's fifth edition of her Technical Communication is a virtual compendium of how tos, for those who aspire to be technically accurate writers and superlative communicators. Burnett, Professor of Rhetoric and Professional Communications, as well as Director of Advanced Writing at Iowa State University, blends the latest in information technology with current work place practices, theory and application, continuing research, and helpful pedagogy for university educators.

The text is presented in five parts. Part One," Understanding the Communicator's Work, " defines the subject matter, explains the writing process, identifies readership, outlines properly executed documents, and finishes with collaboration model in the workplace. The opening section identifies key elements of the technical communicator's work. Part Two,"Developing the Communicator's Tools," Discusses research methodology, organization of information, effective design, and visual aids. Part Three, "Understanding the Communicator 's Strategies," elaborates on creating definitions, clarifying descriptions, outlining process explanation, and ensuring usability through testing, revising and editing. Part Four, "Completing Documents," instructs the reader in effective ways to compose correspondence (letters, memos, and e-mails), instruction manuals, proposals, and report writing. This section will help any one develop a better style in personal professional correspondence. Part Five," Creating a professional Image," explains how to create an effective oral presentation and finishes with career concerns, such as designing resumes and portfolios. The last section is clearly geared towards the students' needs to present them selves in the work place environment. …