Power Tools for Technical Communication:
Chapter 19 Quiz


For each of the following questions, select the best answer according to this chapter of Power Tools for Technical Communication, and then press Check answers.

  1. Which of the following best explains whether most readers of technical information have strong technical backgrounds and why?
    Yes, they must have strong technical backgrounds because technical documents are written for specialist and expert audiences.
    No, they need not have strong technical backgrounds because technical documents are written for nonspecialist audiences.
    Yes and no. Technical documents are written for both specialist and nonspecialist readers and must be adapted accordingly.

  2. In the traditional approach to audiences, one category reads technical information to make business or governmental decisions but may not have much actual technical knowledge about the topic. Which of the following identifies which audience that is?
    Nonspecialists
    Executives
    Technicians
    Experts

  3. Also in the traditional approach to audiences, another category reads technical information to build, operate, or repair equipment. Which of the following identifies which audience that is?
    Nonspecialists
    Executives
    Technicians
    Experts

  4. The traditional classification of audience uses two bases of classification. Which of the following identifies what those are?
    Level of knowledge and use for the information
    Attitude toward the technology and use for the information
    Level of knowledge and attitude toward the technology
    Conditions in which the information is used and attitude toward the technology

  5. Which of the following best describes the technique recommended by Chapter 19 for the process of writing for an audience?
    Imagine your audience as hostile and resistive to your message: do everything you can to appeal to their needs and interests and to calm their fears and anger.
    Imagine your readers as a target; the more precisely and accurately you aim your message at that target, the more likely your message is to be successful.
    Imagine your specific audience reading over your shoulder as you write; imagine their questions, impatience, interest, and other responses.

  6. Which of the following best describes what is wrong with the older metaphors for the process of writing for an audience?
    They assume that the audience is just passively receiving the information.
    They assume that the audience is actively engaged in interpreting the information and responding to it.
    They assume that audiences lack the technical background to understand technical communications.

  7. Which of the following best defines what Chapter 19 means by tasks in instructions and provides some examples?
    Common topics you'd expect to see covered in a report on the technology embedded in a product: setting time on a clock radio; setting the power level on a microwave; using cruise control in an automobile.
    Common uses for or actions involved in a procedure: setting time on a clock radio; setting the power level on a microwave; using cruise control in an automobile.
    Technical background on theories and processes at work when you use a technology to accomplish a procedure: setting time on a clock radio; setting the power level on a microwave; using cruise control in an automobile.
    Common uses for or actions involved in a procedure: theories and processes at work when you use a technology to accomplish a procedure.

  8. Which of the following best explains how task analysis can be used in noninstructional writing projects?
    You would modify it to identify topics on which an audience would need background in order to perform procedures.
    You would modify it to identify actions that an audience would need to perform or to identify variations requiring alternative actions.
    You would modify it to identify topics on which an audience would need information to make executive decisions.
    You would modify it to identify actions that an audience would need to take in order to carry out executive decisions.

  9. Which of the following best explains at what point in a writing project you should analyze your audience and why?
    Toward the end, at revision time: that way you can assess whether you've met your audience's requirements and level of understanding.
    Toward the middle, at rough-drafting time: that way your audience's needs will be foremost in your mind.
    At the beginning, at planning time: that way you can make decisions about the project based oin your understanding of the audience.

  10. Which of the following best explains why audience is often the most important factor in the success or failure of a technical document?
    Because a thorough understanding of the specific audience of a writing project is essential in creating a document that meets the needs of that audience.
    Because a thorough understanding of the general categories of audience for any writing project is essential in creating a document that meets the needs of any audience.
    Because a thorough understanding of the specific audience of a writing project is essential in deciding on the level of formality to use in a document.
    Because a thorough understanding of the general categories of audience for any writing project is essential in deciding on the level of formality to use in a document.


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