edc_2011_23 - Chapter 23 Progress Reports CHAPTER 23...

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Chapter 23: Progress Reports 229 CHAPTER 23: PROGRESS REPORTS Chapter outline Planning the report Formatting and organizing the report Editing for clarity and conciseness Key guidelines for progress reports Use a memo heading, indicating the primary authors in the “From” line Begin with a brief summary of specific key findings and decisions; do not write in generalities about the steps you have taken After the introduction, summarize the project status: the key decisions you have made in regard to the design problem Provide support for decisions in the form of specific results from research and testing Explain next steps in specific terms: who, what, why, where, and when Cite sources in the text and in a References page Arrange appendices in the order in which you refer to them in the body of the report Follow the guidelines discussed in Chapter 21 regarding the use of figures, tables, headings, lists, and page numbers This chapter explains the progress reports that you will write in the second quarter of EDC. A progress report concisely summarizes the current project status (including key design decisions), significant research and test findings, and next steps. It is intended to be read quickly, so the body of the report should be written con- cisely. Use short paragraphs, headings, subheadings, and bullet lists to make the report easily readable. Edit sentences for conciseness and clarity. (See Chapter 25.)
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Chapter 23: Progress Reports 230 A progress report may be either an internal report addressed to the supervisor of an ongoing project (for instance, your EDC instructors) or an external report addressed to the project’s sponsor (the person paying for the project, such as a client). In the second quarter of EDC, you will write internal progress reports addressed to your instructors. Progress reports are important in EDC because they: help you prepare for your team meetings with instructors allow your instructors to see how your project is shaping up, to trou- bleshoot problems, and to help you fix these problems give your team the opportunity to synthesize its research and see what else there is to do document your design process as part of the team’s project notebook Although one or two team members may be responsible for drafting it, the report represents work done by the entire team. Therefore, all members should contribute to the report, especially the appendices. The primary writer should also circulate a rough draft so that team members can suggest revisions before the due date. In industry, you will find that different companies and managers have differ- ent requirements for progress reports. The same is true for the various instruc- tors in EDC. Therefore, you should discuss with your instructors their preferences for the organization, format, and length of the progress reports you submit . To give you a sense of the various possibilities, Appen- dix M at the end of the textbook contains two excellent progress reports sub-
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edc_2011_23 - Chapter 23 Progress Reports CHAPTER 23...

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