The ABC’s of Technical Writing
1. Accuracy – must be tactful in the data recording, statement of calculating mathematical figures.
2. Brevity – it is easier to grasp the main idea of the written report if you have a brief report.
3. Confidence – writer has to be decisive or sure of what he is writing about.
4. Coherence – is the logical togetherness of the material. Sentences, paragraphs, and groups of paragraphs hold together by means of appropriate transitional devices.
5. Dignity – ring of authority; all grammatical constructions must be complete and should bear no flowery words.
6. Emphasis – stressing the major points and subordinating them.
7. Facility – devices used by the writer
7.1 Pacing – technical/unfamiliar info should be presented from small to large quantity
7. 2 Sequence – familiar to unfamiliar; simple to complex; from whole to parts
7.3 Arrangement – significant details should be stresses and balanced to show their proper relationship
7.4 Continuity – thought of one part to another should be clearly established, illustrated, or stated
8. Grammatical Correctness – reflects the communicative competence of the writer
9. Honesty – if the writer borrowed some statements, ideas, or quotations, he has to acknowledge them either in footnotes, end-notes, or cite the author or sources.
10. Illustration – includes charts, diagrams, tables, photos, and others which is used to clarify and support the writer’s views, idea, or the text given.
11. Judgment – judicious weighing of evidence is important. The best evidence can be gotten by considering these criteria; that which is ample, most pertinent, most simple in explaining the facts with least additional evidence, and most in harmony with the rest of the available evidence.
12. Knowledge – is more that just a collection of data, for it involves interpretation and the formulation of conclusions.
13. Logic – process of showing the relations among groups of things and classes of groups.
a. Statement must not contradict each other
b. Words must be used in a consistent sense
c. Statements must move in one direction, whether space, time, or relation
d. Statement must make sense
e. Judgments must not be based on too few data
f. Cause and effects should be clearly distinguished from simple sequence
g. Conclusions should not be inferred if they have no connection with data
h. An authority should not be accepted if he is biased or is not an expert in that particular field.
14. Mechanical Neatness – connotes the general appearance of the report.
15. Normal Procedure – means that a writer must follow the acceptable arrangement of the different report parts.
16. Objectivity – is the writer’s assuming a detached, impartial point of view.
17. Planning – involve thinking ahead of what one has to do.
18. Qualification – is explaining the circumstances surrounding your work because they might have affected the results you are reporting.
19. Revision – involves checking the spelling, punctuation marks, spacing, and margin.
20. Straight Sentences – would carry the full weight of meaning in a report.
21. Thoroughness – is treating your subject fully for your report to have lasting value. You can achieve thoroughness by:
a. preparing a checklist of requirements in the planning stage
b. marking off each requirement as it is fulfilled, and
c. using the checklist again in the revision stage for a final recheck
22. Unity – implies that all details and facts in the report are clearly relevant to the main point under discussion. There are three ways to check unity of a report:
a. read critically the report and find out whether all the statements have something to do with the main topic
b. determine whether the topic of each paragraph is related to the next paragraph
c. prepare a caption or heading for each paragraph, list them down in an outline form
23. Veracity – means truthfulness
24. Viewpoint – is established with the first sentence and should be maintained throughout the report.
25. Word Choice – is the proper choice of words to be used in writing
26. You – Point - presenting information in segments appropriate to the reader’s knowledge.
27. Zest – a report writing should be characterized by zest or hearty enjoyment