Use this week’s weekly writing assignment as a way to move your instructional manual project forward. In the spirit of the project, here are a set of instructions that guide you through completing this assignment.
- As discussed last week, you will need a Gmail/Google Drive account.
- Go to drive.google.com.
- Click on the “+ New” button in the upper left corner, and then click on Google Docs.
- In the new tab/window that opens, you will see the Google Docs editor.
[It looks like most modern word processor software, such as Microsoft Word or Apple Pages. The difference being that this word processor runs as a web app and your work is saved remotely on Google Drive.]
- In the large white box where you see the cursor blinking, begin typing a memo with the headers: TO: Professor Ellis, FROM, DATE, SUBJECT: Instructional Manual Outline for X [where X is what you are creating an instructional manual for].
- Looking back at this web page, scroll down to the basic outline quoted below after the numbered list of instructions.
- Using your mouse, click-and-drag over basic outline below to highlight it, and then press CTRL-C (PC keyboard) or Command-C (Mac keyboard) on your keyboard to copy the text.
- Click on the tab for the Google Doc that you are writing, press “Return” or “Enter” a couple of times to add two lines after your memo header. Then, press CTRL-V or Command-V to paste the basic outline below into your Google Doc.
- Edit the basic outline in your Google Doc as appropriate for the set of instructions that you are designing.
- Between each point, add notes and keywords that will remind you what needs to be added, developed, and written for each section. Are photos, screenshots, or diagrams needed? Make a note of those. And, in particular, focus on the Directions section by listing out a basic list of instructions that you want to write. These do not have to be fully written out, but they should be a guide to you to follow when you turn this outline into your instructional manual.
- Before next week’s lecture, copy-and-paste your memo into a comment made to this post on our OpenLab site. We will discuss how to turn this into your draft instruction manual next week.
Basic Instructional Manual Outline
1.0 Introduction 1.1 Purpose 1.2 Intended Audience 1.3 Scope 1.4 Organization Description 1.5 Conventions (abbreviations, left/right) 1.6 Motivation (answers the “so what” question) 1.7 Safety and Disclaimers 2.0 Description of the Equipment 2.1 Illustration of the Equipment 2.2 Description of the Equipment’s Parts 3.0 List of Materials and Equipment Needed 3.1 Illustration of the Parts Needed to Carry Out the Instructions 3.2 Tools needed 3.3 Table of the parts with description of each 4.0 Directions 4.1 The Task These Directions Are Designed to Show 4.1.1 Step 1 (don’t write Step 1--write a brief statement on what the first step is) 4.1.2 Step 2 4.1.n ...Step n being some number (write as many steps--briefly--as you can think of--you can fill this list out later) 5.0 Troubleshooting 6.0 Glossary 7.0 Reference List