Technical and Business Writing Syllabus for 2021-2022
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Instructor Information

Office Location

Ordway Hall 103B

Office Hours

Mondays and Wednesdays, 10:30 - 12:30

Course Information

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ENGL-2311-001 Technical and Business Writing


Prerequisite: ENGL 1301

Course Description

Intensive study of and practice in professional settings. Focus on the types of documents necessary to make decisions and take action on the job, such as proposals, reports, instructions, policies and procedures, e-mail messages, letters and descriptions of products and services. Practice individual and collaborative processes involved in the creation of ethical and efficient documents.

Student ResourcesStudent Resources Website

Department Expectations

Occupational License Disclaimer

Notice to Students enrolled in an educational program for preparation of issuance of certain occupational licenses:

Students enrolled in an educational program in preparation for obtaining certain occupational licenses are potentially ineligible for such license if the student has been convicted of an offense. For further information, please contact:

Melodie Graves
Justice Involved Advocate
Student Service Center 117
Make appointment at

You can also contact the Legal Clinic, or the faculty member in charge of the educational program that you seek to enroll in. The further information you will receive will include notification to you of your right to request a criminal history evaluation letter from the licensing authority in order to clarify your particular situation.


(3 sem hrs; 3 lec)

Class Type

Online Course

Syllabus Information


Required Textbook

The entire textbook is online and available in the Blackboard course. You do not need to purchase a textbook for this class.

Optional: A Rhetoric Handbook for English 1301, 1302, and 2311.



Other Supplies

Students need frequent access to:

  • a reliable computer with
  • Internet access

If you have computer software difficulties, call 371-5000 immediately for help. As a back-up, computers are available in the English Writing Lab, Ordway Hall on the Washington Street Campus. Check the English Computer Writing Lab Policies ( for open hours and other information.

Student Performance

Course Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, students will:

  1. Recognize, analyze, and accommodate diverse audiences.
  2. Produce documents appropriate to audience, purpose, and genre.
  3. Analyze the ethical responsibilities involved in technical communication.
  4. Locate, evaluate, and incorporate pertinent information.
  5. Develop verbal, visual, and multimedia materials as necessary, in individual and/or collaborative projects, as appropriate.
  6. Edit for appropriate style, including attention to word choice, sentence structure, punctuation, and spelling.
  7. Design and test documents for easy reading and navigation.

Students Rights and Responsibilities

Student Rights and Responsibilities

Log in using the AC Connect Portal

In order to receive your AC Connect Email, you must log in through AC Connect at .

If you are an active staff or faculty member according to Human Resources, use "Exchange". All other students, use "AC Connect (Google) Email".

Expected Student Behavior


CODE OF STUDENT CONDUCT: All rules and regulations set forth in the “Student Code of Conduct” section in the current edition of the Students’ Rights and Responsibilities publication will be followed in this course (see link above).

Be respectful and courteous.  While students are expected to express their own ideas and opinions in this course, students are also expected to use words that are appropriate for a classroom situation. No cursing, personal insults, or disrespectful language will be tolerated. Violation of this rule will result in the loss of points for discussion contributions

The discussion forums in this class provide a great opportunity for you to practice your technical writing style.  Proofread and spell-check your discussion posts, and check your posts and replies for clarity and accuracy. As with emails, avoid using text-message style abbreviations. In addition, proofread your posts for tone. A successful writer is ever-mindful of his/her audience, and your posts should be courteous and professional—even if you are disagreeing with a classmate. Discussion posts with numerous spelling and grammar errors an inappropriate tone will not receive credit.

For full discussion credit, your initial thread must be the minimum word count specified on the discussion, and you must respond to at least two classmates.

Other Responsibilities

  • Check your grades regularly in Blackboard. If you have any questions or concerns about your grades, please talk to me as soon as possible.
  • Avoid plagiarism. Plagiarism will result in a zero on the assignment. If you are concerned about plagiarism or are not sure if you've cited sources correctly, please schedule a visit with me or with the Writers' Corner.

Grading Criteria

Grade Determination

Grades will be based on the following system:               

                A             90-100=high achievement (895 – 1000 points)
                B             80-89= above average achievement (795 – 894 points)
                C             70-79= satisfactory achievement (695 – 794 points)
                D             60-69= unsatisfactory achievement (595 – 694 points)
                F              0-59= unacceptable (0 – 594 points)


Grading Scheme

Assignment Categories

Percentage of Overall Grade



Discussions and Miscellaneous

Discussions in Blackboard

Minor Assignments: Outline, Job Ad Analysis

Miscellaneous activities


Major Writing Assignments

Proposal: A persuasive document written to your instructor requesting permission to research your careers for the employment outlook report and detailing your plans for the scope, methods, and audience of your report. 

Infographic: A practice in using text and visuals to accurately convey information in a way that is clear, concise, meaningful, and engaging for an audience.

Employment Outlook Report Final Draft: Multi-page formal researched report that includes front and end matter. Report details the findings of your research about a career in a way that is clear, organized, and purposeful.

Peer Review Report: One-page report in memo format the responds to one classmate's EOR rough draft. Report makes suggestions for improvement as well as points out things the classmate has done well in his/her rough draft.

* Letter: Application letter to a potential employer that describes your interest in the position and your primary qualifications OR claim letter to an organization requesting recompense for a purchase or service.

* Resume: Document detailing your education, work history, and other qualifications for a potential employer.

* May not be required in summer course.


Final Exam

In-class writing response to prompt.





Assignment Criteria and Feedback Policy

A rubric is provided for each writing assignment that will set forth the criteria for grading.

Timely instructor feedback is important for student success. However, writing assignments often take time to grade, and I strive to give helpful comments on each assignment. To that end, I will make every effort to grade your written work quickly.  Major writing assignments will be graded within 5 days from the due date.


TUTORING:  You can use SMARTHINKING (click), online tutoring available through the AC website.  Be advised that the Smartthinking tutoring service has a 2-3 day turnaround, so you need to submit work well before the due date to be sure to receive timely feedback from a tutor.

Online tutoring is also available at the Writers' Corner.

Assignment Submission and Late Work

Assignment Submission:

  • Please submit each assignment in its designated place in Blackboard.
  • Please do not send assignments through email unless I have specifically told you to email an assignment to me.
  • Assignments must be submitted in PDF format.
  • Save your work carefully and diligently. You may want to create your documents in Google Docs so you don’t have to worry about saving. If you work in Google Docs, you can save your work as a PDF before you submit it in Blackboard.

Major writing assignments will receive a 10% penalty per day. After three days, late work will not be accepted. Minor, in-class assignments cannot be made up. Because this is a fast-paced 6-week course, you must complete assignments by the due date.  Please check the course calendar for specific due dates.  When you can, work on assignments ahead of their due dates. If a situation arises that interferes with your turning in work in a timely manner, please email or call me.


Attendance in an Online Course

Students are expected to participate actively in an online class. Participation means:

  • Logging in to the course at least once a day to check on due dates, complete assignments, and check announcements.
  • Checking email regularly in your Amarillo College GMail account. I frequently send emails that explain course updates or include course notes, so please check your AC Gmail account as often as possible.
  • Completing and submitting weekly assignments and discussions by due dates.

If during the semester you consider dropping, you must check with me first. The deadline for withdrawal is on the Amarillo College Calendar.

NOTE: Withdrawing early from a class could affect scholarship or financial aid monies. 


Course Outline

Please note that this outline is subject to change.

This outline gives you an idea of which chapters will be read and when major assignments are due. Check your class calendar in Blackboard for specific due dates.

Week 1

Chapter(s) and Quizzes

Introduction, Chapter 1 and 3



Week 2

Chapter(s) and Quizzes

Chapters 2


Job Ad Analysis


Emphasizing the positive: discussion

Document Design

Design Basics and Visual Hierarchy

Week 3

Chapter(s) and Quizzes

Chapters 4 and 8




Using plain language: activity

Week 4

Chapter(s) and Quizzes

Chapters 5 and 10


Outline for Employment Outlook Report


Avoiding sexist and biased language: activity

Document Design

Using headings

Week 5


EOR rough draft due

Peer Review Report for EOR draft

EOR final draft due



Week 6


Take final exam by Wednesday at 11 p.m.


Additional Information

Final Exam

Information about final exam will be posted in Blackboard and discussed in class.

Syllabus Created on:

06/29/22 8:47 AM

Last Edited on:

06/29/22 8:57 AM