Ship-Ship-Hooray! Free Shipping on $25+ Details >
Technical Communication

Technical Communication - 9th edition

Technical Communication - 9th edition

ISBN13: 9780321089793

ISBN10: 0321089790

Technical Communication by John M. Lannon - ISBN 9780321089793
Edition: 9TH 03
Copyright: 2003
Publisher: Longman, Inc.
International: No
Technical Communication by John M. Lannon - ISBN 9780321089793

ISBN13: 9780321089793

ISBN10: 0321089790

Edition: 9TH 03

shop us with confidence


The bestselling text of its kind, Lannon's Technical Communication, is the premier text for introductory technical communication, combining a pragmatic and accessible approach to the subject with attention to the latest developments in the field.

Addressing a wide range of interests for classes in which students from a variety of majors are enrolled, Technical Communication, 9/e, combines practical applications with clear writing and examples. Rhetorical principles are explained, illustrated, and applied to an array of documents, from brief memos and summaries to formal reports and proposals. Coverage of such topics as document design, electronic communication, and oral presentations reflect the realm of technical communication today. Exercises, incorporated throughout the text, enable students to better understand the skills necessary both in college and in the workplace. New "Tech Comm in the News" features focus on current topical issues in the field while a series of integrated web icons provide students with a new way to access valuable additional information on the text's companion website.

Long the standard in the industry, Technical Communication 9/e continues to lead in its treatment of the issues which confront students in today's technical communication classes-from managing collaborative groups to designing pages for the World Wide Web.


  • Concise, pragmatic approach. Many of the newer books in the field propose some kind of theoretical approach. Lannon treats technical communication as a concrete problem-solving activity in a concise, accessible manner rather than foregrounding some particular theoretical orientation up-front.
  • TECHNOLOGY ADVANTAGE - Comprehensive coverage of computers and the Internet as used in technical communication reflects current trends in technology.
  • TECHNOLOGY ADVANTAGE - Chapter 20, "Web Pages and Other Electronic Documents" guides students in creating Web Sites and other electronic documents. The chapter also includes introductions to hypertext, HTML, and usability criteria.
  • Chapter 6, "Working in Teams," offers guidelines and strategies for successful collaboration, discusses sources and management of conflict, explores creative thinking and listening, and provides an emphasis on computer-mediated and Internet collaboration. Collaborative projects are also featured throughout the text.
  • Emphasis on the critical evaluation of data and information literacy is integrated throughout the text. Also, Chapter 7, "Thinking Critically About the Research Process," explores expert opinion and ways to effectively evaluate it.
  • Chapter 17, "Designing and Testing Your Document for Usability," provides guidelines for producing effective documents and explores usability issues in online or multimedia documents. "Usability Checklists" -integrated throughout-also help students polish their writing.
  • Detailed coverage of international and cultural issues in technical communication help students address the needs of global audiences and better understand specific cultural guidelines for various types of communication.

New To This Edition:

  • New "Tech Comm in the News" Features. Each Part Opener now features a current events new story, which demonstrates the impact of technical communication in the real world.
  • TECHNOLOGY ADVANTAGE - New "Web Icons" appear throughout the text, integrating material presented in the book with additional resources and interactive materials on the Companion Website. Marginal icons in the text highlight places where the Companion Website offers additional cases, sample documents, templates, and examples.
  • TECHNOLOGY ADVANTAGE - Updated technology coverage. Chapters on web design, document design, and usability, in particular, have been heavily revised to reflect changes in technology and an increasing use of web-based documents and platforms.
  • Increased coverage of ethics. In addition to one complete chapter on ethical principles and case studies in Part 1, ethical decision making is woven into the fabric of the communication process.
  • New coverage of project management. Chapter 6 on working in teams has been redesigned to emphasize the tools and techniques of project management.
  • More sample documents. These have been added to the document design chapter and web design chapter in particular, and include new web pages and other related documents throughout. About one-third of the sample documents are new, and about 25% additional new documents have been added. Appendix B offers an added "casebook" of sample documents, including an extended "document in progress."
  • Added coverage of international and global workplace issues. Includes additional samples, cases, and exercises premised on a multi-national intercultural workplace, foregrounding issues of cultural and social style differences.
  • New service-learning component. End of chapter exercises now include some projects specifically intended for use in service-learning courses. A non-profit organization angle has been added to supplement the corporate culture examples.

Author Bio

Lannon, John M. : University of Massachusetts

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


1.Introduction to Technical Communication.

Technical Communication Serves Practical Needs.
Writing is Part of Most Careers.
Communication Has an Electronic and a Human Side.
Communication Reaches a Global Audience.


2. Preparing an Effective Technical Document.

Consider the Key Elements.
Rely on Creative and Critical Thinking.

3. Delivering the Essential Information.

Assess the Audience's Information Needs.
Identify Levels of Technicality.
Develop an Audience and Use Profile.

4. Making a Persuasive Case.

Identify Your Specific Goal.
Assess the Political Realities.
Expect Audience Resistance.
Know How to Connect with the Audience.
Allow for Give-and-Take.
Ask for a Specific Response.
Never Ask for Too Much.
Recognize All Communication Constraints.
Support Your Claims Convincingly.
Consider the Cultural Context.
Shape Your Argument.

5. Weighing the Ethical Issues.

Recognize Unethical Communication.
Know the Major Causes of Unethical Communication.
Understand the Potential for Communication Abuse.
Rely on Critical Thinking for Ethical Decisions.
Anticipate Some Hard Choices.
Never Depend Only on Legal Guidelines.
Learn to Recognize Plagiarism.
Decide Where and How to Draw the Line.

6. Working in Teams.

Examples of Successful Collaboration.
The Role of Project Management in Successful Collaboration.
Sources of Conflict in Collaborative Groups.
Managing Group Conflict.
Overcoming Differences by Active Listening.
Thinking Creatively.
Reviewing and Editing Others' Work.
Face-to-Face versus Electronically Mediated Collaboration.
Ethical Abuses in Workplace Collaboration.


7. Thinking Critically about the Research Process.

Asking the Right Questions.
Exploring a Balance of Views.
Achieving Adequate Depth in Your Search.
Evaluating Your Findings.
Interpreting Your Findings.

8. Exploring Electronic and Hard Copy Sources.

Hard Copy versus Electronic Sources.
Internet Sources.
Keyword Searches Using Boolean Operators.
Other Electronic Sources.
Hard Copy Sources.

9. Exploring Primary Sources.

Informative Interviews.
Surveys and Questionnaires.
Inquiry Letters, Phone Calls, and Email Inquiries.
Public Records and Organizational Publications.
Personal Observation and Experiment.
Analysis of Samples.

10. Evaluating and Interpreting Information.

Evaluate the Sources.
Evaluate the Evidence.
Interpret Your Findings.
Avoid Errors in Reasoning.
Avoid Statistical Fallacies.
Interpret the Reality Behind the Numbers.
Acknowledge the Limits of Research.

11. Summarizing and Abstracting Information.

Purpose of Summaries.
What Users Expect from a Summary.
A Situation Requiring a Summary.
Forms of Summarized Information.
Placement of Summarized Information.
Usability Checklist for Summaries.
Ethical Considerations in Summarizing Information.


12. Organizing for Users.

Partitioning and Classifying.

13. Revising for Readable Style.

Revising for Clarity.
Revising for Conciseness.
Revising for Fluency.
Finding the Exact Words.
Adjusting Your Tone.
Considering the Cultural Context.
Legal and Ethical Implications of Word Choice.
Avoiding Reliance on Automated Tools.


14. Designing Visuals.

Why Visuals Are Important.
How Visuals Work.
When to Use a Visual.
What Types of Visuals to Consider.
How to Select Visuals for Your Purpose and Audience.
Graphic Illustrations.
Computer Graphics.
Using Web Sites for Graphics Support.
How to Avoid Visual Distortion.

15. Designing Pages and Documents.

Page Design in Workplace Writing.
Desktop Publishing.
Creating a Usable Design.
Audience Considerations in Page Design.
Designing On-Screen Pages.

16. Adding Document Supplements.

Purpose of Supplements.
Title Page.
Letter of Transmittal.
Table of Contents.
List of Tables and Figures.
Informative Abstract.

17. Designing and Testing the Document for Usability.

Why a Usable Design Is Essential.
How to Achieve a Usable Design.
How to Test Your Document for Usability.
Usability Issues in Online or Multimedia Documents.
Usability Testing in the Classroom.


18. Memo Reports and Electronic Mail.

Purpose of Memo Reports.
Elements of a Usable Memo.
Interpersonal Considerations in Writing a Memo.
Common Types of Memo Reports.
Electronic Mail.

19. Letters and Employment Correspondence.

Elements of Usable Letters.
Interpersonal Considerations in Workplace Letters.
Inquiry Letters.
Claim Letters.
Resumes and Job Applications.
Electronic Job Hunting.
Support for the Application.

20. Web Pages and Other Electronic Documents.

Online Documentation.
The Web.
Elements of a Usable Web Site.
Scripting a Web Document with HTML.
Privacy Issues in Online Communication.

21. Technical Definitions.

Purpose of Technical Definitions.
Levels of Detail in a Definition.
Expansion Methods.
Situations Requiring Definitions.
Placement of Definitions.

22. Technical Descriptions and Specifications.

Purposes and Types of Technical Description.
Elements of a Usable Description.
A General Model for Product Description.
A Situation Requiring Product Description.
A General Model for Process Description.
A Situation Requiring Process Description.

Technical Marketing Literature.

23. Instructions.

Purpose of Instructional Documents.
Formats for Instructional Documents.
Faulty Instructions and Legal Liability.
Elements of Usable Instruction.
A General Model for Instructions.
A Situation Requiring Instructions.

24. Proposals.

How Proposals and Reports Differ in Purpose.
The Proposal Audience.
The Proposal Process.
Proposal Types.
Elements of a Persuasive Proposal.
A General Model for Proposals.
A Situation Requiring a Proposal.

25. Analytical Reports.

Purpose of Analysis.
Typical Analytical Problems.
Elements of a Usable Analysis.
A General Model for Analytical Reports.
A Situation Requiring an Analytical Report.

26. Oral Presentations.

Avoiding Presentation Pitfalls.
Planning Your Presentation.
Preparing Your Presentation.
Delivering Your Presentation.


Appendix A. Recording and Documenting Research Findings.

Taking Notes.
Quoting the Work of Others.
Paraphrasing the Work of Others.
What You Should Document.
How You Should Document.
MLA Documentation Style.
APA Documentation Style.
CBE Numerical Documentation Style.

Appendix B. A Casebook of Sample Documents Illustrating the Writing Process.

Critical Thinking in the Writing Process.
An Everyday Writing Situation: The Evolution of a Short Report.
Your Own Writing Situation.
Documents for the Course Project: A Sequence Culminating in the Final Report.

Appendix C. Editing for Grammar, Usage, and Mechanics.

Common Sentence Errors.
Effective Punctuation.
Effective Mechanics.
Works Cited.