You are on page 1of 24

Functions of technical writing

 Technical writing serves as a record.

 It furnishes needed information.
 It obtains/manages business through
proposals(a plan or suggestions).
 It records what has been done.
 It provides reports to the top
management and stakeholders (a
holder of supplies and management)
of the companies.
Characteristics of Technical
 Clear, Concise and simply
 Highly defined
•Examples: Lab reports,
memos, business letters,
technical reports, and
 1. clarity : it is easily understood by
your intended audience.
 2. Comprehensiveness: all of the
necessary information is present.
 3. Conciseness: it is clear without
excess verbiage.
Compare These Statements:
 Looking into  The sun set
the azure blue sky in the west.
one could see the
golden orb of sun
slip gently beneath
the western sky.
The left-side description of
the sun setting is an example
of academic writing and the
right-side description is an
example of technical writing.
Notice that the technical
description is clear,
concise, and coherent.
These three C’s are
trademarks of technical
Style in Technical Writing
 Writers have unique characteristics.
• Sentence structure, word length word
choice, and word order; these are choices
we make without being conscious of it.
These decisions shape the way we
express ourselves

 Style is personal choice, there is no

right or wrong here
Expression of an underlying
attitude that can be:
• Casual • Enthusiastic
• Objective • Serious
• Persuasive • Authoritative
• Friendly

**Always present your material in a positive

light. Never let the negative be presented.
The following tips lend themselves
to better clarity and cohesion in
technical writing.
Sentence Tips
 Place the main point at
the beginning of the

**Don’t make the

reader work to
find it.
Sentence Tips
 Use one main clause
in each sentence (next
below the sentence in
text, consists of
subject and predicate)

**more becomes
Sentence Tips
 Examine your copy to
make sure you vary the
sentence length –but aim
for 15-20 words per
sentence. If you use the
same length sentences, the
text becomes tedious
(tiresome) to read
Conciseness Tips
 Avoid the repeated use of
pronouns, this confuses the
reader. Only use a pronoun
immediately following the noun
it represents. Try to use specific
nouns such as the person’s
name, or the specific piece of
equipment, etc. In place of
abstract nouns
Conciseness Tips
Focus on
strong verbs!
 Assess  Develop
 Classify  Eliminate

 Compute  Require
Conciseness Tips
 Shorten wordy phrases
 Replace long words with short ones
 Leave out clichés ( an expression that
has been overused to the extent that it
loses its original meaning or novelty).
 Cut out extra words that are redundant
or no longer needed.
Language Use Tips
 Distinguish facts from opinions

 Include supportive statements

when necessary

 Choose your words carefully

 Avoid using words like “always”

and “never”—these box the
writer in and create finality
Active Voice
 Active voice—emphasizes the
doer or the subject
“Joe delivered the pizza within the
specified time frame.”

Active voice uses one verb “delivered”

compared to passive voice which uses a
form of the verb “to be” + the verb---
”was delivered”

Almost all technical writing should be

done in the active voice, except lab
Active Voice helps:
•Create less wordy

•Places emphasis on the

subject—e.g. company or
person’s name
Passive Voice
 Passive voice—emphasizes the
recipient of the action
•Verbs with the “to be” form
•Emphasize the receiver of
the action
•Avoid repetitious use of “I”
and names
Examples of editing
• “the passage of the levy was
accomplished through long
and hard negotiations, and
door to door canvassing.”

• “The levy pass through long
and hard work.”
 “Confirmation of the voting
results occurred yesterday.”

 “The voting results were
confirmed yesterday.”
Technical Writing
 Provides clear
communication in the

 Has unique formats and a

specific style of writing

 Creates clarity, conciseness

and coherency in writing