* This topic highlights the importance of communication, its meaning, and the relationship between the message, sender and receiver. * Communication is defined as the giving, receiving or exchanging of information, opinions or ideas so that the message is completely understood by everybody involved. * A two-way process, communication comprises the following elements – the sender, message, channel, receiver, feedback, and context. * Barriers to effective communication include status and roles, cultural differences, choice of communication channel, length of communication, disabilities, use of language, individual perceptions, noise and distraction, clarity of message, and feedback. * There are three important stages to producing good written communication: i. planning ii. writing iii. editing * The pitfalls to avoid in written communication are using confusing language, verbosity, poor sentence structure, and information overload. * All borrowed materials must be cited. * People sometimes fail to respond to written forms of communication for various reasons, for instance, the message is not clear, the language is weak, there is too much information, etc.
* The receiver of any written report should be able to understand the contents of the report, know precisely what action needs to be taken, how to do it and in what manner it should be done.| | COMMUNICATION MODELS – A THEORETICAL PERSPECTIVE * A model is a snapshot of a phenomenon, not the complete picture. * Claude Shannon’s model gives importance to the encoding and decoding of information because of the need to counter noise but ignores the reasons why people compose messages. * Roman Jakobson’s model considers the writer, reader, context, message, contact, and code but does not account for motive. * According to the model based on the work of Ulric Neisser, we undergo a cycle of learning whereby we explore based on our existing perceptions, learn new information, acquire new perceptions, and continue to explore. * Similarly, we write guided by our beliefs and as we write, we discover new information which leads to new ideas that influence our beliefs.
* According to the model based on Michael Polanyi’s work, a piece of text does not convey the original experience to the reader. Instead, it conveys meaning. * A sign can represent ideas, experiences, images, objects, feelings, concepts etc. * Symbols have complex meanings in addition to the literal ones. * Emoticons and abbreviations are increasingly making an impact in written communication.WHAT ARE ESSAYS? * Writing a good essay requires some amount of planning. Basically, there are four stages involved: i. Pre-writing ii. Draft iii. Editing iv. Final draft/essay * In academic writing, the three most common types of essay are: i. Explanation essay ii. Argumentation essay iii. Discussion essay * A discourse marker is a word or phrase used in a conversation to signal the speaker’s intention to mark a boundary. * An essay consists of three sections: i. Introduction ii. Body iii. Conclusion*Word – A word is the smallest unit of a language that can exist on its own in either written or spoken language. A morpheme such as -ly, used to create an adverb cannot exist without the adjective it modifies; it is not a word, although the adjective it modifies can exist alone and, therefore, is a word: *Phrase – A phrase is a group of words that go together, but do not make a complete sentence.
TYPES OF ESSAYS?
* An explanation essay can be defined as an essay that explains things or processes in sequential order. * An argumentation essay tries to win the audience over so that they agree with what we say, accept our facts, embrace our values, and adopt our arguments and way of thinking. * In a discussion essay, we present both sides of the issue and let the audience decide for themselves which side of the fence they want to be in. * Having a good thesis statement and outline does not guarantee a good essay. It needs to be supported with solid evidence in order to convince the audience. * When someone adopts a position, or tries to persuade someone else to adopt a position based on a bad piece of reasoning, they are committing a logical fallacy. TACKLING ESSAYS
* This topic introduces a few tools needed to handle essay writing. * A paragraph is made up of a topic sentence, supporting sentence/s and a concluding sentence. * A multi-part essay question may have several questions subsumed within it. * Creative writing does not always follow the rigid rules, forms or outlines commonly found in academic writing. * When you borrow ideas from books, magazines, newspapers, websites, journals and films, you must give credit to the source by citing it in your bibliography. * There are two popular ways of writing bibliographies – the MLA and the APA style. * Plagiarising is a serious crime as it refers to stealing someone else’s ideas or words and claiming them to be your own. * Writers need to be careful to avoid free online plagiarism checker for students.
* Visual cues such as charts and graphs are often used in essays, especially in scientific research papers. PERSUASIVE WRITING
* This topic defines persuasive writing as compared with other forms of writing. * It also presents the dos and don’ts of persuasive writing and provides you with examples in clarifying a position, preparing arguments and organising a persuasive written report or article. * It gives opportunities for you to present yourselves and to respond to the persuasive writing of others so that you can decide, for yourselves, what makes an effective piece of writing.| | REPORT WRITING
* This topic highlights the processes in report writing.
* Inclusive are the stages of report preparation, data collection, analysing data and sorting the results, going through the first draft, writing it and revising it. * In addition, the topic describes the writing styles writers should follow and how the written work relates to the statement of purpose, organisation, length and style. WRITING AND PRESENTING PROPOSALS
* A research proposal aims to convince others that you have a worthwhile research project and that you have the competency and skills to successfully complete it. * Every proposal addresses certain key questions in research – what, for whom, how, why, etc. * A research proposal comprises key elements including an introduction, problem statement, research methodology, analysis, conclusion and bibliography. * Some research studies require you to find sponsors to fund the project. * Proposals can be formal or informal. Informal proposals usually do not aim to get funding or an academic degree. * Business or marketing research proposals need to be clearly written in order to help you win that contract. * A feasibility study is another form of business proposal. It can be considered a brief formal analysis of a prospective business idea to determine whether it makes sense. FUNDAMENTALS OF WRITING A RESEARCH PAPER
* This topic discusses the fundamentals of writing a research paper. * It covers almost every aspect of writing a research paper, beginning with defining what is meant by a good research paper, steps in writing a research paper, useful tips and guidelines, to looking at samples of the Table of Content of good research papers. COLLABORATIVE WRITING
* This topic introduces students to collaborative writing. * It stresses the importance of communication skills in collaborative writing and examines the differences in purpose and process between individual and team writing. * It clearly describes the processes of collaborative writing (the invention stage, drafting stage and revision stage), the rules and procedures for the project, plans for completing the project, and project management.