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Summary: This handbook provides practical advice on report writing--with specific writing samples and guidelines included for law enforcement, security, corrections and probation personnel. The authors go beyond the routine English-grammar approach to deal with the difficult but often-ignored problem of documentation that will hold up in court. Important concepts are emphasized with related checklists, forms and pull-out chapter tests.Edition/Copyright: 2ND 98
Cox, Clarice R. :
Clarice R. Cox, retired tenured instructor of the University of Hawaii and Honolulu Community College. Cox received her M.Ed. in Educational Communication from the University of Hawaii. She has presented papers for ACJS on security, mediation and textbook writing. Additionally, Cox has contributed articles to a wide range of publications, both popular and scholarly. Since her retirement, she has led various workshops and seminars on issues such as recall training for detectives and security report writing.
Brown, Jerrold G. :
Jerrold G. Brown, retired police officer from the Honolulu Police Department, has taught police report writing, constitutional law, criminal evidence, police management and principles of the criminal justice system at Honolulu Community College. While employed as a police officer, Brown completed an A.A. in Police Science, a B.S. in Human Development and a M.Ed. in Educational Foundations. He is currently completing a doctorate in clinical psychology and is executive director of the Hawaii Mental Health Center, Inc. He continues to be active in the law enforcement area.
FOREWORD (by Margery S. Bronster)
FOREWORD (by Roger Fulton)
Section One-The Nature of Report Writing
Chapter 1: The Why and How of Report Writing
Why Do You Write Reports?
Law Enforcement Reports
Probation and Parole Officers Reports
How Do You Write Reports?
Writing the Log
Do Not Copy Randomly Chosen Models
How Do You Get Started?
What Kind of Notebook Should You Use?
How Much Should You Record in a Notebook?
Investigate, Don't Just Record
Don't Use Legalese or Old-Fashioned Terminology
Should You Use Abbreviations?
Add Sketches, Photographs, and Diagrams
Evidence for Law Enforcement
Evidence Collected for Security
Evidence Collected for Probation and Parole
Need for Documentation
What Should be Documented?
The ABCs of Report Writing (Whatever Your Field)
Chapter 2: Starting to Write
Planning Your Writing
Completing the Face Page
Review Your Notes
Make a "Shopping List"
Place Information in Groups
Label the Groups
Place Groups in Order
Writing the Report
Proofreading and Revisions
Sample Writing Exercise Using the Shopping List Method
Creating a Shopping List from Notes
Grouping the Shopping List
Labeling the Shopping List
Placing the Labeled Shopping List in Order
Basic Recommendations for Writing Reports
Spelling, Jargon, and Abbreviation
Active versus Passive Voice
Third Person versus First Person
Superfluous Words or Legalese
Accurate and Factual Reporting
Chapter 3: The Face Page
UCR Crime Definitions
Methods of Gathering Information
Correct Abbreviation and Capitalization
Dealing with Names
Writing a Good Synopsis
Keeping Up with Trends
Chapter 4: The Narrative-The Continuation Page and Follow-Up Report
Continuation Page, Follow-Up Report, and Supplementary Report or Material
What is Your Purpose?
Who are Your Readers?
Using Military Time
Headings and Subheadings as a Way of Organizing
Creating Visual Impact and Ease of Reading
Avoiding Repetition and Meaningless Material
Getting Rid of Stereotyped Fillers
Chapter 5: Habits that Make for Speedy Writing
Writing About People
Yourself and Fellow Employees
Describing Other People
Writing About Property
Writing About Places
Specific Parts of a Location
Describing MOs and Trademarks
Definitions of MO and Trademark
Avoid Being Called on Your Time Off
Chapter 6: Other Types of Writing
Learning from the Short Memo
Writing a Letter
Faxing and Other Technological Advances
Recording Minutes of a Meeting
The Presentence Investigation Report (PSIR)
Research and Other Reports
Chapter 7: Reading and Correcting Reports
Common Problem Areas
Use of Word Processors
Improving the Agency by Helping the Individual
Section Two-The Mechanics of Report Writing
Chapter 8: Simplified Study of Grammar
Identifying Parts of Speech
Using One Word in Several Ways
Using Verbs in the Past Tense
Direct Objects versus Indirect Objects: Learning the Patterns
Identifying Active and Passive Verbs
Identifying Independent and Dependent Clauses
Recognizing Prepositional, Participial, and Infinitive Phrases
Using Phrases as Adverbs, Adjectives, and Nouns
Using Prepositions in Your Report
Chapter 9: Avoiding Errors in Sentence Structure
The Run-On Sentence-Source of Many Errors
Block Method of Visualizing Sentence Structure
Chapter 10: Making Punctuation Work
Chapter 11: Breaking the Spelling Jinx
Take Special Care with Names
Learn Words Commonly Used in Report Writing
Study Common Problem Areas
Clearing Up the "-ing" Confusion
Learning Words with Tricky Letter Combinations
Dealing with Other Complexities of the English Language
Strengthen Your Overall Writing Ability
Developing Proofreading Techniques
Chapter 12: Using or Abusing Words
Slang and Dialects
Don't Use Legalese
Avoid Using Words or Phrases That Draw Conclusions
Improve Your Vocabulary
Synonyms, Antonyms, and Homonyms
Developing Your Vocabulary
Chapter 13: Abbreviating and Capitalizing
Abbreviating to Save Time and Space
Numbers and Codes Used for Abbreviation
Abbreviations of Latin Terms
Postal Abbreviations for States and Territories
General Rules for Capitalization
Capitalizing and Indenting for Brevity and Impact
Section Three- The Modernization of Report Writing
Chapter 14: Innovations and Predictions in Criminal Justice
Improving Ways of Sharing Information
Automation of Report Writing
Dictation of Reports
Computer-Aided Dispatching Systems and Records Management Systems
Facsimile Machines, E-Mail, and the Internet
The Crime Lab
Automatic Fingerprint Identification System (AFIS)
Use of Computers and Television
Looking Toward the Future
Appendix A: Model Reports
Appendix B: Examples of Agency Instructions for Completing Report Forms
Appendix C: Selected Readings
About the Authors
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