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EN 306B Prof Writing in the Disciplines:Business Communications
Decker, Amy B.


Mission Statement: The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.

Vision Statement: Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.

Course

EN 306 Professional Writing in the Disciplines: Business Communications

Semester

S1T 2009 DLB

Faculty

Decker, Amy B.

Title

Senior Adjunct Faculty

Degrees/Certificates

M.A. English, 2002
B.A. English, 1999

Daytime Phone

540-288-4685 ( this is a Vonage #; I'm on Okinawa time, approx. 14+ EST)

E-Mail

Amy.Decker@park.edu

edsonbaby@hotmail.com

Semester Dates

Jan 12- Mar 8, 2009

Class Days

TBA

Class Time

TBA

Prerequisites

PREREQUISITES: EN 105, EN 106, passing the Writing Competency Test, and 60 credit hours. 3:0:3

Credit Hours

3


Textbook:

Business Communication Essentials, by Courtland Bovee and John Thill (**THIRD EDITION**), Prentice Hall 
 
ISBN:  0-13-199536-7

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development.  The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.
Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email helpdesk@park.edu or call 800-927-3024
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information http://www.park.edu/Current/.
Advising - Park University would like to assist you in achieving your educational goals. Please contact your Campus Center for advising or enrollment adjustment information.
Online Classroom Technical Support - For technical assistance with the Online classroom, email helpdesk@parkonline.org or call the helpdesk at 866-301-PARK (7275). To see the technical requirements for Online courses, please visit the http://parkonline.org website, and click on the "Technical Requirements" link, and click on "BROWSER Test" to see if your system is ready.
FAQ's for Online Students - You might find the answer to your questions here.


Course Description:
This course is the third course in the required writing sequence at Park University. This course will emphasize knowing and preparing various kinds of communications in business and related fields: business letters, reports, proposals, surveys, field studies, visual aids, group presentations, and public lectures. It emphasizes professional writing skills and expectations in various disciplines while developing further basic writing skills. Specific departmental courses may be deemed equivalent and will be used to satisfy this course. PREREQUISITES: EN>EN 105, >EN 106, passing the Writing Competency Test, and 60 credit hours. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:
The facilitator's educational philosophy is to use simulated and real conversations based on shared experiences, lectures, readings, and collaborative discussions to facilitate student interaction with course material.  The facilitator will engage each learner in progressively challenging activities to encourage intellectual growth and exploration.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Analyze and explain techniques and standards for effective and efficient written communication with audiences in today's high-tech, globally-oriented, and diverse business and government environment.
  2. Develop business documents applying systematic processes for the steps of planning; designing; researching; organizing; drafting; revising; and proofing.
  3. Integrate research findings into business documents, using effective techniques for evaluating, verifying, and documenting information.


  Instructor Learning Outcomes
  1. Discuss and apply techniques of project management - through the development of an Information Plan and other activities - necessary for effective business writing tasks.
  2. State and explain the requirements for communicating effectively and ethically in a globally-oriented, technological economy.
  3. Apply techniques of traditional and online research necessary for effective business writing.
  4. Apply techniques of analysis and decision-making necessary for effective organizing of written business documents.
  5. Apply techniques necessary for efficient drafting of business documents
  6. Apply techniques necessary for revising to achieve a clear, vivid and readable style.
  7. Develop (plan, conduct research for, organize, draft, revise, and proof) business memos, letters, proposals, reports, and resumes which meet the criteria stated in an Assessment Checklist used for evaluating writing.
  8. Given a workplace scenario and a writing task/assessment checklist, coach a colleague or subordinate in effective techniques to complete a writing task.
Core Assessment:

Analytic (Problem-Solution) Business Report.  The core assessment requires a business report focused on a topic appropriate for a business or organizational setting. The report will incorporate sources from online and other research using standard business document design elements and documentation formats. The report be more fully developed than previous assignments.  The report must provide research findings, conclusions, and recommendations sufficient for decision making in a business or organizational setting.  

Weight: No less than 20% of the final course grade.
 

Learning Rubric

Competency

Exceeds Expectation (3)

Meets Expectation (2)

Does Not Meet Expectation (1)

No Evidence (0)

Intent/Purpose: clear? (Synthesis)  
Outcomes 1, 2
 

The document’s intent and purpose are both explicitly and clearly stated. 

Intent or purpose not explicitly stated, but understandable to the target audience. 

Intent and purpose not stated and not clear. 

Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Audience: targeted? (Analysis)  Outcomes 1,2
 

Audience’s needs and expectations are fully addressed. 

Audience’s needs or expectations are partly addressed. 

Audience’s needs and expectations not addressed. 

Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Focused on a single controlling idea? (Synthesis)  
Outcomes 1,2
 

A sharply-focused controlling idea is clearly stated at the beginning. The writer keeps the reader focused on the controlling idea throughout the document.  

Controlling idea is stated at the beginning; focus on the controlling idea may not be clear throughout the document, but is re-stated in the conclusion.  

Controlling idea not stated; reader does not know where the writer is headed.  

Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Scope is clearly delineated? (Analysis)  
Outcomes 1,2
 

Scope is clearly stated. 

Reader must infer the of the scope covered by the document. 

Scope is vague or not stated. 

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Perspective is appropriate?  
(Synthesis)

Outcomes 1,2
 

Writer’s perspective is clear, and accommodates the audience’s perspective. Document evidences understanding of cultural and organizational diversity. 

Writer’s perspective clearly implied; may not (or may only partially) address the reader’s perspective. 

Writer’s perspective is vague or does not take into account the audience’s needs and expectations. 

Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Controlling Idea: sufficiently developed?

(Synthesis) 
Outcomes
 1,2,3

Controlling idea fully developed with external documented evidence, concrete examples and illustrations, and both inductive and deductive analysis/explanation.  

Controlling idea developed with concrete examples as evidence and inductive or deductive analysis/explanation 

Controlling idea not fully developed. 

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Analysis: are facts and opinions explained?

(Synthesis)  
Outcomes

 1, 2, 3
 

All opinions and facts are explained or confirmed to meet the reader’s needs and expectations.  

Essential opinions or facts supporting the controlling idea are explained or confirmed. May have some minor lapses. 

Opinions and facts are not explained or confirmed.  

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Evidence: detailed and convincing?

(Synthesis)  
Outcomes

1, 2, 3
 

Evidence is convincing, clearly documented and verifiable. Writer has clearly evaluated sources.   

 Evidence is limited but generally convincing. May be somewhat outdated or lacking in depth.

Writer does not provide evidence to support assertions. Document is not credible.

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Critical Thinking  
(Synthesis) Outcomes
1, 2, 3 

Consistently applies effective critical thinking techniques. Considers other perspectives, including cultural, professional, and personal. Considers both pro and con. Applies deductive and inductive logic, as appropriate. 

Considers pros and cons to the degree that the document is credible.  

Document is one-sided and contains logical flaws and fallacies. 

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Main Supporting Parts: clearly defined and simple?  
(Synthesis)

Outcomes

1,2,3
 

All main supporting points stated early, and in appropriate sequence.

Main points are partially or incompletely stated, or may be inferred by the reader. 

Main supporting points are not stated, and the reader cannot tell what is to follow after the introduction.

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Introduction

(Synthesis)  
Outcomes
 1,2,3

Sets stage, fully gives reader sense of purpose, and what is to follow; states controlling idea and major parts, Provides transition to body. Addresses needs and expectations of the target audience. States intended goal and objectives of the document. Transitions effectively to the next section of the report.

States purpose or controlling idea clearly, but not major parts. Partially addresses the goals and objectives of the document. Partially addresses the needs and expectations of the target audience.

Does state the purpose or address the needs and expectations of the target audience. 

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Transitions

 (Synthesis) 
Outcomes
 2

Transitions provide continuity and emphasis, and move the reader smoothly towards the document’s conclusion.

Transitions are present at critical places, such as between paragraphs. 

No 

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Conclusion  
(Synthesis) Outcomes
 1,2,3

Memorable conclusion. Returns to controlling idea, reviews ideas, provides closure to enable effective decision making. 

Summarizes the document and re-states the controlling idea. 

Ends abruptly or ambiguously.  

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Document Design

(Application)

Outcome

2

Text design uses correct fonts, headers, white space, and other elements to 

Uses basic design elements that are conventional to a business report.

Document design causes reader fatigue.

Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Paragraphs  
(Synthesis)

Outcomes
 2

Suitably brief and focused. Clear topic sentences. Unified and coherent. Fully developed with a balance of facts and explanation. 

Each paragraph generally covers a separate topic.

Paragraphs lack consistent structure.

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Sentences

(Synthesis)  
Outcomes
2

Varied, and of a suitable style for the audience; not excessively long or short. Coordinated. Complex when appropriate. Appropriately short to fit the needs of a busy workplace reader. No fragments, fused sentences, or comma splices.

Generally coordinated. Minimal fragments, fused sentences, or comma splices.

Uncoordinated; coherence problems. 

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Readability and Economy of Style

(Synthesis))

 

 

Style is easily understandable in a single rapid reading. Minimizes passive voice, smothered verbs, and bureaucratic and academic language.

Style is understandable to a busy workplace reader, with a minimum of stylistic distractions.

Style is difficult to read

Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Tone  
Outcomes
 2

Suitable for audience; not ambiguous. Uses personal pronouns as appropriate.

Appropriate for setting.  May occasionally come across as impersonal or bureaucratic.  

Ambiguous, inappropriate, or offensive tone for situation and audience. 

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Vocabulary  
Outcomes
 1,2

Concise and appropriate for the needs and expectations of the target audience. No jargon or language to impress rather than express.  Complex terms are defined. Abbreviations and acronyms are spelled out the first time they are used. Fluent yet not pretentious. 

Generally understandable – reader may need to consult references.

Inappropriate, confusing. Usage is nonstandard.

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

Grammar and Mechanics  
Outcomes

1,2
 

No distracting errors in grammar, mechanics, usage, punctuation, or spelling. 

Only occasional errors; not distracting. 

Errors distract the reader and erode writer’s credibility. 

 Does not submit assignment or does not respond appropriately to assignment. 

 

Class Assessment:

  • A. General. You will be able to track your average exactly throughout the course. The grading scale is as follows: A = 90-100; B = 80-89; C = 70-79; D = 60-69; F = 0-59. You will know in advance the standards, points, and percentage for each assignment. My goal is to give you prompt, clear, and useful feedback to help you become a better writer and thinker. Each student is responsible for:

    • Completing weekly reading assignments.

    • Completing Weekly Discussion Questions and an Online Journal and submitting the journal to the instructor on dates specified by the instructor. 
       
    • Completing six substantial writing assignments, referred to as Papers. 
       
    • Completing a Final Examination. 

    Course Grading Scale –See next section.

    Proctored final examination - An examination will be taken in a proctored testing environment during the 8th week at one of the Park University sites around the country or at an alternative location.  For proctored examinations, photo identification is required at the time of the test.  Guidelines for selecting an acceptable proctor can be found on the Park University Website. 

  • Other Information on proctored exams:

    • It will be the responsibility of the student to arrange for a proctor, by the 6th week of the term, who is accepted and approved by the course instructor. 
    • Approval of proctors is the discretion of the Online instructor. 
    • A proctor request form will be made available to you during the first week of class so that you can send your requested proctor to your instructor for approval. 
    • Failure to take a final proctored exam (or submit your final project for some online graduate courses) will result in an automatic "F" grade. 
    • Some Graduate Online courses may not require a proctored Final Examination.

Grading:

Assignment

Points

% of Grade

Week Due

Paper #1 (Memo) 

50

5%

Week 2

Paper #2 (Memo w/research)  

100

10%

Week 3

Paper #3 (Letters) 

150

15%

Week 4

Paper #4 (Proposal) 

100

10%

Week 5

Paper #5 (Resume) 

50

5%

Week 6

Paper #6 (Report) 

200

20%

Week 7

Journal/Notebook 

50

5%

Week 7

Class Participation  

100

10%

Continually

Final Examination 

200

20%

Week 8

Total 

1000

100%

 

Late Submission of Course Materials:

  • Late submissions of work/missing assignments: Late submissions of assignments will be handled on a case-by-case basis, though as in the workplace, it is essential that documents be delivered on time, in final form. There is a one-grade- per- day lateness policy for all papers in this course. Individual situations may influence the grade penalty range, but not the penalty itself. For example, if you turn in an assignment 7 days late, it will receive an "F", but whether you receive a "O'"or a "59" may reflect individual circumstances. Be resourceful and responsible about turning work in on time!

     

  • THERE IS NO POSTING LATE TO DISCUSSION THREADS, regardless of type of absence (excused or unexcused).

Classroom Rules of Conduct:
The material posted in the online classroom in uneditable and enduring. Be sure that your contributions are of appropriate tone and decorum.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:
Communication and Memo writing   Week One      Read Ch. 1,2,3/ P1 assigned, due end of Week 2 Begin JOURNAL

 
Business Messages   Week Two      Read Ch. 4,5, skim ch 10-11/ P2 assigned, due end of Week 3
 
Memos and Letters   Week Three     Read Ch. 6, 7 / P3 assigned, due end of Week 4/ P6 assigned, due end of week 7
 
Bad News Writing/ Persuasive Messages      Week Four      Read Ch. 8, 9/ P4 assigned, due end of Week 5. Review Journal assignment in Guidelines tab to make sure you are on track with this assignment!
 
Resume and Employment writing      Week Five      Read Ch. 13, 14 / P5 assigned, due end of Week 6
 
Reports      Week Six      Read Ch. 10, 11/ Keep working on P6 and Journal
 
Presentations   Week Seven   Read Ch. 12/ Turn in P6 and Journal assignment and prepare for Final.

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life.   Park University 2008-2009 Undergraduate Catalog Page 87

Plagiarism:
Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. Park University 2008-2009 Undergraduate Catalog Page 87
Plagiarism may result in a zero without the benefit of a make-up or revision. Plagiarism includes improper paraphrasing, copying and pasting large chunks of text from sources, etc. Plagiarism may result in further disciplinary action.

Direct quotations may make up no more than 10% of a document's word count.

Remember, you are the author, not co-author- of your pieces! Choose sources and incorporate them carefully and responsibly.

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.
ONLINE NOTE: An attendance report of "P" (present) will be recorded for students who have logged in to the Online classroom at least once during each week of the term. Recording of attendance is not equivalent to participation. Participation grades will be assigned by each instructor according to the criteria in the Grading Policy section of the syllabus.

Park University 2008-2009 Undergraduate Catalog Page 89-90

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: http://www.park.edu/disability .

Copyright:

This material is protected by copyright and can not be reused without author permission.

Last Updated:12/21/2008 7:53:58 PM