Technical Writing, taught by active researcher in science and technology trains doctoral candidates to develop the ability of expressing themselves effectively in writing on topics closely related to their research works. In addition to providing information synthetized from relevant textbooks, the instructors offer students practical advice from their own experiences as scientific paper authors, peer-reviewers and/or journal editors. Topics covered include the main steps needed to publish a scientific paper, writing each section of a research paper, and matters related to effective communication of intended messages with appropriate vocabulary, sentences and paragraphs.
The course aims to teach doctoral students "what to write", "where to write" and "how to write" in the context of describing their research in scientific papers that are to be submitted for publication as well as in cases of other formal and informal documents (cover letters, e-mails, grant proposals).
By the end of this course, students will:
1. understand the importance of technical writing for both current stage and future careers
2. acquire and enhance the ability to write effectively each section of a scientific paper by using/selecting appropriate contents, vocabulary and grammar
3. acquire and enhance the ability to express their research-related ideas logically in sentences and paragraphs that effectively communicate their intended messages to the targeted readers
written communication, research paper writing, technical writing style
|Specialist skills||✔ Intercultural skills||✔ Communication skills||✔ Critical thinking skills||✔ Practical and/or problem-solving skills|
Classes will be formed based as much as possible on a match between student's and instructor's major and specialized area of research (if needed, a selection process will take place). The course will be offered twice per academic year, in the fall term. Students will attend the classes for 7 weeks (1 credit), either in the Ookayama or Suzukakedai campus. The main format of each class will be a lecture given by the instructor, with students not just listening but also participating in class exercises. A number of individual written homework will also be assigned, which will be evaluated by the instructor.
|Course schedule||Required learning|
|Class 1||October 2(Wednesday), 13: 20-14: 50, Ookayama S421，S422 Importance and role of Technical Writing, overall view on the process of writing a scientific paper||Understanding the importance of Technical Writing for one's career in science and technology and the necessary steps needed to go through in order to report one's research in scientific journals|
|Class 2||October 9(Wednesday), 13: 20-14: 50, Ookayama S421，S422 Sections of a Manuscript: Drafting the Introduction and Methodology||What to include in Introduction and Methodology sections and how to write them using proper vocabulary and grammar|
|Class 3||October 16(Wednesday), 13: 20-14: 50, Ookayama S421，S422 Sections of a Manuscript: Drafting the Results and Discussion||What to include in Results and Discussion sections and how to write them using proper vocabulary and grammar|
|Class 4||October 23(Wednesday), 13: 20-14: 50, Ookayama S421，S422 Sections of a Manuscript: Drafting the Conclusions, Title and Abstract||What to include in Conclusions and Abstract how to write them using proper vocabulary and grammar; How to give a manuscript a compelling title|
|Class 5||October 30(Wednesday), 13: 20-14: 50, Ookayama S421，S422 Matters of style in Technical Writing at word level and sentence level (word choice and order, grammar, punctuation)||How to select the words, word order, punctuation signs in a sentence and what grammar rules to follow to ensure optimal transmission of intended messages to readers|
|Class 6||November 6(Wednesday), 13: 20-14: 50, Ookayama S421，S422 Matters of style in Technical Writing at paragraph level (topic and support sentences, topic progression, linking expressions)||How to write effective paragraphs by arranging sentences in logical manner and how to connect them to ensure optimal transmission of intended messages to readers|
|Class 7||November 13(Wednesday), 13: 20-14: 50, Ookayama S421，S422 Matters of style in Technical Writing targeting specific concerns of specialized research fields (equations, chemical reactions, numbers, units of measure) and addressing topics proposed by students||How to describe in writing the specialized terms of various disciplines such as equations, chemical reactions, numbers, units of measure and other specific issues of technical writing brought up by students themselves|
None-learning materials will be provided by instructors
The Handbook of Technical Writing by Gerald J. Alred, Charles T. Brusaw, Walter E. Oliu, Science Research Writing for Non-Native Speakers of English by Hilary Glasman-Deal, The elements of Technical Writing by Gary Blake, Robert W. Bly, The Craft of Scientific Writing by Michael Alley
60% homework assignments, 40% participation to class activities