genre-of-technical-manuals

genre-of-technical-manuals - The Genre of Technical Manuals...

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The Genre of Technical Manuals Writing 495: Genre and Writing Major Project By Sara Ramaker Prepared for: Professor Chris Haven Grand Valley State University April 2007 The Genre of Technical Manuals Ramaker 1
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Introduction Technical writing can be found in many contexts and, whether we realize it or not, we have all read and written some form of technical writing in our lives. For instance, you may have read an instruction manual that came with a new piece of equipment, a financial report for a local organization, or a proposal detailing how to remedy a specific problem. You may also have E-mailed directions to your home to a friend or explained a complex task to a co-worker in writing. A specific type of technical writing called technical manuals will be discussed in this document. The type of information and level of detail found in technical manuals depends largely on the specific topic and intended audience. Like any form of writing, technical manuals exist for specific reasons and people, and in specific forms. These are just a few examples of technical manuals; User Manuals Instruction Manuals Service Manuals Training Manuals The following document will discuss what technical manuals are, where they will be in the future and how the rhetorical situation affects and shapes the genre. Why Do Technical Manuals Exist? Technical Manuals exist for various reasons which vary depending on the specific document and the product and producer it was commissioned by. Nevertheless, a well-written technical manual of any variety exists to; Provide Information and Instructions Enhance the out-of-the-box or off-the-truck experience Build and increase customer satisfaction Improve corporate and product image Help to foster or create brand loyalty Increase the likelihood of product accessory purchases or product upgrades Reduce technical support calls Reduce product returns First and foremost, technical manuals exist to give people information. Most importantly, the document sets forth the context, intended use, and expectations of the topic it was written for. Smooth integration of a product into the lives of individuals and companies is the goal of a technical manual For example, user manuals explain how a product should be used for best experience and safest use, thus remove some responsibility from the producer in the case of misuse. The Genre of Technical Manuals Ramaker 2
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In some ways, technical manuals are a form of advertising for the producer as well. While the writing is mainly used to explain complex ideas, procedures, safety specifications, etc., it is also a way to sell an idea or product or to reaffirm a user’s confidence in the product they have already purchased or ideas they have already accepted. A superior product and well-written manual reflect well upon the producer and increase the likelihood of additional purchases or upgrades in the future. For Whom Do Technical Manuals Exist?
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This note was uploaded on 02/13/2012 for the course ENGL 420 taught by Professor Staff during the Fall '08 term at Purdue University.

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genre-of-technical-manuals - The Genre of Technical Manuals...

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