In Technical Writing and Editing, we learned about the four levels of editing: revising, substantive editing, copyediting, and proofreading. Learning about the levels of editing allowed me to get a better grasp at how to approach my writing assignments in class. In the past I have eagerly completed my assignments then struggled to find a rhythm when editing them. More often than not, it lead to me proofreading the paper then submitting it. After being assigned multiple 10-page term papers and numerous other small assignments this semester, I knew I had to find a way to establish a better method of editing and submitting my assignments in a timely fashion. As a first step, I now know to revise individual documents as a whole to establish clarity. If time is permitted, I then update the organization and design of the document. Lastly, I go through the document twice to ensure clarity and consistency and then to catch any grammar errors.
I believe I have been very successful this semester when revising and editing papers. I not only believe that this strategy is useful while I am still a student, but in the future as an engineer as well. Engineers often write reports, memos, and e-mails to coworkers, clients, and customers. For quick e-mails, it is important to quickly copyedit and proofread to ensure the reader will understand the purpose of my e-mail, however in reports and memos it may be more crucial to go through each level of editing. Knowing how to utilize the four levels of editing is a valuable skill as an engineer.
Arlene Miller, blogger on bigwords101.com, discussed the history and current usage of how cuss words are altered in writing as well as on television and radio. Grawlix, which refers to strings of symbols that are often used in place of cuss words, date back to comic books from the 1880s. However, the term wasn’t coined until the 1960s. Sometimes this is referred to as profanitype, however that is just a slang term for grawlix.
In modern days, many different versions of grawlix are used. Oftentimes, a single asterisk is used to replace a central vowel in the cuss word. Common symbols that are used include &, #, %, !, @, and ?.
The Federal Communications Commission has restrictions on what can be said on television and radio. Broadcasters typically replace a cuss word with an audible beep which is now referred to as “bleeping” something out.
In the article, Arlene Miller mentions last how many authors, producers, and broadcasters will replace the swear with a more acceptable replacement term such as jerk, heck, or gosh, allowing them to get their point across in a more appropriate manner.
Perhaps you’re familiar with the concept and use of citations from your schoolwork, or have seen them used in publications. Some of you may not even think twice about citing a source, while others may not be sure, or may simply forget, especially if what you’re writing is informal, and won’t be seen by anyone but your Facebook friends. But it’s important to remember to include the source of your material. It not only makes you appear credible, but it acknowledges the original source of information, which isn’t your own.
But how do you know what is determined to be a credible source? Grammar Girl says it is “subjective” to the reader, and to use “common sense,” but she also offers a few invaluable tips to help you:
1. Find out more about the author(s). What are their credentials? Are they an expert in the subject? What sources do they cite in their work, and are others citing them?
2. Take a look at the layout, design, and overall writing of the source. When was it written, is the information on the page out of date? Check spelling, grammar, and typos. Too many could indicate lack of credibility. Another red flag could be whether the information is designed to sell you something, or if it’s too good to be true.
These are some good ways to help you determine source credibility.
I am certain many of you have tried to cite a source, and when trying to access the source, find that it has disappeared and is no longer available. It’s recommended that you save the file, save the entire page, or check a personal favorite tool in my arsenal called the Wayback Machine. On the Internet Archive site is also a way to save websites so that they don’t disappear.
Up-to-date information of standards on how to cite electronic sources can be found at:
– Modern Language Association (MLA)
– American Psychological Association (APA)
– The Chicago Manual of Style (CMS)
– The Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL)
Don’t be discouraged to use and cite any kind of electronic sources. With these resources, you will be able to cite anything, no matter what you’re writing.
– Amy Platteter
Fogarty, M. (2017, January 19). Citing podcasts and websites. Retrieved from http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/grammar/citing-podcasts-and-websites
This blog post by Save the Semicolon, entitled “Rules Are for Breaking” makes the very bold statement that there is no real rule or law that requires people to use proper grammar. It is instead only “very good advice.” The author says that one can break a grammatical rule and still be considered a good writer – if breaking the rule is what’s best for the reader. Although unconventional, this reinforces the idea of identifying the audience and taking it’s needs and characteristics into consideration when producing a document. The author provides a few examples, but for the most part leaves it up to you to figure out when to break the “rules,” and when to follow the “advice.” My title for this post may not be grammatically correct, but hey it certainly got your attention, didn’t it? Go on. Don’t play by the rules. You know you wants to.
– Matt Williams –
The blog that I will be summarizing is one post from CyberText newsletter by Rhonda Bracey. She is a very active techcomm blogger and knows her stuff.
This particular blog was about her experience shopping at Target and seeing a sign showing where the CDs and DVDs where shown where they were with a large sign, but written as “CD’s” and “DVD’s”. This is grammatically incorrect because the two main rules for this dictate that when a word is plural, you add an -s or -ies. The second rule states that an apostrophe should only be used when in possessive. So in this instance, the sign was wrong. Plus on the side of it was the correct use of -s with a sign labeling “books”. The inconsistencies bothered Rhonda quite a bit to make a post about it. I just thought it was funny how she stated, and it being true, that target paid quite a bit of money for the sign where in actuality they paid for a sign that was grammatically wrong, plus then having it near a sign that was grammatically correct. I have to agree with her that inconsistencies are annoying.