When you sit down to write as an engineer or scientist, you make hundreds of decisions. Unfortunately, general writing courses such as freshman composition do not prepare you for many of those decisions: how to organize documents into sections, how to write a summary, how to balance precision and clarity, and how to incorporate illustrations and equations. Put another way, a gap exists in the way that many of you have been taught to write and the expectations that exist for engineers and scientists. This lesson tries to bridge that gap by providing an overview of the stylistic aspects in scientific writing that are not taught in general writing courses. In effect, this lesson targets engineering and science students who have not yet taken a technical writing course, but who still are expected to write reports for laboratory courses, design courses, or summer internships. In doing so, this lesson tries to help such students avoid making of the common stylistic errors that pull down the documents of many young engineers and scientists. Although this lesson is a standalone summary, you are encouraged to study the other lessons at this site to make your scientific writing truly stand out
Summary of Writing as an Engineer or Scientist: Audience, Purpose, and Occasion.
Summary of Writing as an Engineer or Scientist: Organization, Depth, and Emphasis.
Exercises and Quizzes
Forthcoming in August and September 2019 are quizzes both on this page and on Canvas so that instructors can check whether students have viewed and understood the material on each lesson. At that time, we will give instructors instructions on how to access to locate those Canvas quizzes in the Commons so that they can export those quizzes into their own course. In addition, we will give instructors a web location of the answer keys to the quizzes on these pages.