Technical Writing Structure

Regardless of the type of information which is being presented the structure of technical writing is paramount. Structure refers to the layout and format. Writing which has a good structure is user-friendly. 

On websites, this will mean laying out the FAQ pages in a format which is easy to navigate and is clearly identifiable. Newspapers and magazines are usually ordered in such a way that users know where to find certain pages e.g. sports pages at the back, main headlines at the front, and perhaps specific pullouts. Books are broken down into chapters relating to particular subjects and usually have a sub header beneath the main header. Other different sized headings are used to introduce new pieces of information. 

Technical reports and articles have to be structured in a way which suits the audience and meets with the conventions of the specialty. For instance, a journal articles may have to include specific headings and be set out in a way that is customary. Typically, there will be a summary at the beginning which provides a brief description of what the article is about and its conclusions. Likewise a psychological report written by a psychologist to a lawyer may include a summary in bullet point format to address the lawyer's questions. User guides should be written so that each article includes the same sections so that each document relates to the others. 

Structure is used to enhance a document. When deciding on a particular document structure it should not be used to mask poor content. Good structure needs to be used in conjunction with well written and accurate content. 

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Technical Writing

The Technical Writing ebook has been written for anybody who would like to become a technical writer, add technical writing to their repertoire of skills, or improve their technical writing skills.