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Archive for the 'Tips' Category

Tip of the Day: Determine Context

Posted by Jennifer L. Bowie, Ph.D. on June 18th, 2012

Determine your context and the context of your audience for a website, blog, or other digital media that work for you and your audience. Begin with your context, and consider: What lead to the writing or design of this text? Why are you writing or designing this text? What constraints do you have on this […]

Tip of the day: Do not require location-based services, but allow them!

Posted by Jennifer L. Bowie, Ph.D. on September 19th, 2011

Do not require location-based services on your website, blog, or other digital media, but do allow them. According to Pew Internet, “28% of American adults use mobile and social location-based services.”  If you want to include location-based services in your website, blog, or other digital media, do so. But do not require your users to […]

Tip of the Day: Analyze your audience!

Posted by Jennifer L. Bowie, Ph.D. on September 7th, 2011

In the last Tip of the Day, I suggested that writing for one’s audience would lead to a stronger text. To do so, you must analyze your audience. When analyzing your audience, first consider demographics, like: Age Sex Location Language Race Ethnicity and Culture And much more Next consider how the audience is using your […]

Tip of the Day: Write to your audience for a stronger text

Posted by Jennifer L. Bowie, Ph.D. on September 6th, 2011

If you write to your audience your text/media will be more successful, effective, efficient, and usable. Audience is the most important of the three parts of the rhetorical situation. If you do not fully consider and write or design for the audience, it doesn’t matter your purpose, context, or anything else. You were unsuccessful. If […]

Audience, purpose, and context are three key considerations any of communication. You must think about who you are writing to, why you are writing, and what the situation is (yours and theirs). If you consider these three things, your communication will be clearer and more effective. To find out more check out Screen Space 21: […]

Tip of the Day: How to figure out what the reading level of your text is

Posted by Jennifer L. Bowie, Ph.D. on August 30th, 2011

In yesterday’s Tip of the Day, I discussed how the average US adult reads at an 8th grade reading level. So, if you are writing something to be read by the average American, you need to write at an 8th grade reading level. Today’s tip shows you how to figure that out. In Word 2010: […]

The average reading level of adults in the US is 8th grade. So, if you are writing to the “average” American, you need to keep your texts at an 8th grade reading level. This means: Go for short and simples sentences Use shorter words Avoid jargon Use language your audience will understand Write in active […]

In order to celebrate the  last episode of the Usability and Usability Testing 101 series, this week’s tips focus on usability testing. The final steps of usability testing, after you have prepared for testing and conducted the testing, are not only fun, but easy if you follow my steps. First collate the data into findings. […]

In order to celebrate the last episode of the Usability and Usability Testing 101 series, this week’s tips focus on usability testing. Once you have selected your user groups, created tasks, and prepared for testing, it is finally time to do those usability tests! With all this preparation the testing itself should be easy. Just […]

In order to celebrate the last episode of the Usability and Usability Testing 101 series, this week’s tips focus on usability testing. When creating what the tasks will be for your usability testing, consider purpose, objectives, type of test, and then develop those tasks. Don’t just pull tasks out of the air, develop your tasks […]