Part 17 Use textual cues (procedure writing)

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Information about Part 17 Use textual cues (procedure writing)

Published on June 21, 2016

Author: JoanneSorensen


1. 17. USE TEXTUAL CUES Control the way people interpret your text Photo source: Unsplash (Romain Vignes)

2. Professional writers tell us that using textual cues make text legible, indicates structure and capture’s reader’s interest. Photo source: Unsplash (Josh Felise)

3. Colour can be used to differentiate headings from instructions. But, you should make sure that there is no implied meaning behind the use of colour.

4. A combination of upper and lower case text should be used for headings. It helps with eye scanning. The use of all capitals is not recommended.

5. Consider only using bolding and all capitals as highlighting for specific word choices (e.g. conditional clauses, technical verbs) IF the alarm sounds, THEN TURN the valve to the CLOSED position. WHEN the unit alarm sounds, THEN PUT the valve cap on the drain.

6. Consider using tables to limit the length of text lines. Short line lengths can be easier for people to read.

7. Consider combining shading (or colour) with all capitals to highlight warnings and cautions. But, don’t rely just on colour alone. Why? People could be colour blind. The document may not be available in colour when used.

8. Consider combining icons and words to highlight warnings and cautions. But, don’t rely on icons alone. Why? Icons can be misinterpreted.

9. ABOUT me People tell me that they want their procedures to support people’s performance; so I help them. I help people when their procedures don’t work. I write procedures for people who want to reduce the challenges and error traps associated with procedure use. I edit procedures against standards, programs, and best practices. I take a risk and research-based approach and I base my recommendations on industry standards and best practices. I coach and mentor people who have other jobs (people who are not professional writers) and help them improve their procedure development and writing skills. I develop formats for procedures that provide structure for writers and readers. I also develop style guides to support standardisation and consistency of procedure content. I review and analyse procedural practices programs. I give advice to leadership teams about how procedural practices can be improved and integrated with governance, improvement, and compliance programs. Read more of my ideas at: Web: Blog:

10. Connect with me Web page: Blog: Email: SESSION 18: CHUNK INFORMATION Ready to view the next set of slides?

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