Writing User-friendly Instructions
Whenever you need to explain to readers how to do something, you need to write instructions, a task requiring precision. Flawed instructions can waste time, cause considerable frustration, and even lead to data loss, equipment damage, or injury. On the other hand, good instructions are transparent to the user and, although it may not be obvious, save time and money. This one-day workshop will show you how to plan, draft, test, and employ best practices to produce excellent instructions and procedures.
Developing an approach to writing instructions
Separating conceptual and procedural information appropriately
Handling dependencies and alternative flows
Writing clear and precise steps
Choosing accurate and consistent terms
Including visual elements
Choosing an effective format
Preserving reusable content
Testing instructions and procedures, and working with a feedback loop
- Anyone who writes instructions or procedures
- Anyone who writes user help
- Anyone whose writing must include explanations of how to do something
Melanie Sexton, Ph.D., is an editor, technical writer, and instructor, with more than 20 years experience teaching University courses and workshops in grammar and writing skills. As technical writer and editor, she has designed on-line help systems for software applications, edited technical documentation suites, written style guides and standards, and managed a variety of writing projects. She also happens to be profoundly deaf and has designed and delivered workshops on deafness and disability issues for both government and private-sector clients.
“Above and beyond my expectations!”
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