Power Tools for Technical Communication:
Proposal Formatting (Print)


In this lab, you add headings, lists, and illustrations to the unformatted text of a proposal to write an informative guidebook to hypothyroidism in adults:
  1. Copy the text below this box, and paste it into your preferred word-processing software.
  2. Study the unformatted text carefully, rearrange the paragraphs as necessary, add headings, and reformat text as numbered or bulleted lists as necessary.
  3. Using the business-letter format for the cover letter, address this proposal to The Medical Review Board, Austin Diagnostic Medical Center, 12221 Mopac Expressway, Austin, Texas 78758. Using your name and the current date, indicate that you are Research Technician at the UT Medical Center, 55 Medical Circle, Austin, Texas 78750.
  4. Use a standard report format for the actual proposal: center the title; use second- and third-level headings; use bulleted and numbered lists as well as tables as necessary. Create an appropriate title.
  5. Put your name, Proposal Format, and the date on this document, and print it out for your instructor.


The following is a list of the graphics that will be presented in the guidebook: The throat (thyroid) area (Diagram); Symptoms (diagram); Percentage effected with Symptoms (Table); Recommended screening tests (Table).

Knowledge, I believe, is crucial for every individual, especially when it comes to their health. Patients are not always given the information they need to understand what their doctors are diagnosing. Due to time restraints and/or unfamiliarity with certain subjects, patients sometimes leave the doctors' office with uncertainty. Patients may not be able to retain and process all the information that is given to them and are therefore not able to ask the "right" questions. This guidebook will help ease the adult patients into understanding their Hypothyroidism diagnosis. Informing the patient, using a standard guide, alleviates doctors of explaining the details of the disease, yet lets the doctor feel comfortable with the patient leaving the office. It also puts some of the "power" in the hands of the patient. With a bit of understanding, Hypothyroidism patients no longer need to be afraid of the diagnosis or treatment.

The following is a working outline on how the guidebook will be set up. It shows the sections and details of the guidebook. Introduction: What is the thyroid; Definition of Hypothyroidism vs. Hyperthyroidism; At-risk groups; Signs and symptoms; Self-examination
Causes: Thyroiditis; Genetics
Diagnosis and tests: Thyroid-simulating hormone (TSH); Serums- Thyroxine (T4), Triiodothyronine (T3); Radioactive iodine; Imaging techniques- scan and/or sonogram; Needle biopsy
Treatment: Thyroid hormone pill; Radioactive iodine; Surgery; Adverse consequences (Drug affects; Cardiac conditions)
Conclusion: Long-term follow-up; Importance of keeping in touch; Famous patients; Resources for help

The initial cost of production will be as follows: Write, edit, review $3,000; Develop graphics $1,000; Cover and Binding 1,000; Duplicating (in cases of 1000) $4,000; Total $9,000

With this in mind, I hope you realize that we here at the University of Texas Medical Center, are professional individuals with one common goal --- To inform the public the best we can. Writing this guidebook brings us one step closer.

The following is a proposal, as requested in the advertisement in the Austin Medical Times, to write an informative guide about Hypothyroidism in adults for patients recently diagnosed. This proposal contains background information, a tentative outline of its contents and the costs and charges estimated for the production of this much needed guide. It will contain diagrams and charts to help patients identify the location of the thyroid and the symptoms that are involved with Hypothyroidism. Although it will contain technical information, it will be easily read and understood by anyone with a standard eighth-grade reading level.

The guidebook will be approximately ten pages long and include several easy to follow graphics and charts. The cover will be a heavy-weight paper. The guidebook will be center-folded and stapled. This offers most efficient production to fit the need. It will include information from various reputable sources such as The Thyroid Association and The Canadian Thyroid Society. Several Endocrinologists will also review various parts of the guidebook and have input on its documentation. The general flow of the guidebook follows.

Not only am I one of the ten percent of Americans diagnosed with having Hypothyroidism, I am also a Research Technician for the University of Texas Medical Center. Having a diagnosis without any background information and lots of unanswered questions that I was unable to project caused me to research the disease on my own. Once finding the answers, I found it easier to accept Hypothyroidism and not let it run my life. Instead, I turned it around and found a start in my career in the medical field as a medical researcher. During the past two, my work with the University of Texas Medical Center has included guidebooks on Diabetes, Hyperthyroid Disease, and Glaucoma.

As for the schedule of this project: Starting research June 23; Detailed outline sent for review June 27; Preliminary draft sent for review July 07; Graphics produced July 14; Finalize preliminary draft July 21; Final copy forwarded July 28; Deliver first shipment Aug. 08

Please contact me at your earliest convenience.

The guidebook will be written mainly for adult patients recently diagnosed with Hypothyroidism. Explaining what Hypothyroidism is, its symptoms, and how it is caused and treated will be the main points of the guidebook. It will have a few charts and diagrams to enhance understanding. The reader will not need to have any technical knowledge about the disease, only an eighth-grade reading level.

Enclosed is a proposal for an informative guide regarding hypothyroidism in adults, as requested in the Austin Medical Times. This proposal contains background information, a tentative outline of the guide and graphics and the estimated cost of productions. Also included is the list of sources used for information on this disease. Thank you for your time and consideration. I look forward to the prospect of working with you. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments at (000)-000-0000.

Hypothyroidism. Stanford University. [web page] August 1995; http://www-med.stanford.edu/school…les/hypothyroidism.html. [Accessed June 09, 1997].
Kearns, Brenda. Could it be your thyroid? First for Women (July 07, 1997).
"Patient Information". American Thyroid Association. [web page] April 1997; http://www.thyroid.org/patient/patient.htm. [Accessed June 09, 1997].
Patient Information. Thyroid Home Page. [web page] 1997. http://www.thyroid.com [Accessed June 09, 1997].
Schachter, Micahel, M.D. "Health World Online- Hypothyroidism" [web page] 1996; http://www.healthy.net/LIBRARY/Articles/Schacter/hypothyr.d.htm. [Accessed June 09, 1997]. More literature will be obtained for this research.

Diseases of the thyroid are not uncommon to the medical profession. Hypothyroidism effects approximately ten percent of Americans. It is something that is not brought to the publics attention like AIDS or various types of cancers are, even though it is a life-long battle. Until recently, Hypothyroidism patients were not given much of an opportunity to become easily informed about their disease. With a guidebook, patients have a good start to understanding what is happening inside their body and cope with it openly. Hypothyroidism is an incurable disease and needs to be treated with as much care and openness as any other disease.


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