Guidelines for Developing Instructions: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Guidelines for Developing Instructions

1st Edition

By Kay Inaba, Stuart O. Parsons, Robert J. Smillie

CRC Press

160 pages | 73 B/W Illus.

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Description

Confusing, inadequate instructions for setting up and using consumer products are not only unhelpful, but potentially dangerous. They may contain wrong information, poor warnings, and no pictures or illustrations. Standards are either non-existent or little known, even though the U.S. government has developed and tested standards for the past thirty years. This book presents a set of guidelines written by The Human Factors and Ergonomics Society that have been tested by human factor specialists. This expert advice is applicable to writing assembly procedures, operational procedures, and user, shop, and repair manuals.

Reviews

"I recommend this book to anyone interested in writing effective procedural instructions."

-Ergonomics in Design

"[This book] is a thorough, methodical manual, which delivers just what its title promises. The process of this very specific type of writing is clearly laid out in overview and broken down into manageable steps; clearly this same excellent process was utilized in the preparation of this volume. … Highly recommended for academic, special or public libraries supporting technical writers and those in need of assistance with developing technical materials; in addition, for its attention to detail and the planning process, this source would likely be useful to anyone who develops instructional materials for any audience."

-E-Streams

"In the past, when I have taught a course on task-oriented communication, I have used a [different] text book … . In the future, I will use 'Guidelines for Developing Instructions' instead."

-Technical Communication

Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION

GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS

Expected Mode of Use

Basic Units of Instructions

Considerations for Packaging Information

Components of Instructions

GENERAL PRESENTATION PRINCIPLES

Summary of Principles

Short-Term Memory

Consistency and Fixed Syntax

Text-Graphic

Figure-to-Ground Ratio

Sequence

Multilingual Format

INFORMATION TO PLAN THE WORK

General

Configuration

Prerequisite Conditions

Safety

Help Required

Tools, Equipment, and Supplies

Table of

GRAPHICS

Locators

Detailed View

Types of Graphics

Captions

Callouts

Application Guidelines

LANGUAGE CONTROL

Rules for Command Verbs

Command Verb List

Command Verb Dictionary

Non-Command Verbs

Nouns and Nomenclature

Other Parts of Speech

Abbreviations

TEXT AND FORMAT SPECIFICATIONS AND RULES

Headings

Command Steps

Sequence of Tasks and Steps

Callouts in Text

Sub-Procedures (Procedures within Procedures)

Tables to Supplement Instructions

Guidance and Routing Information (Notes)

PREPARING INSTRUCTIONS

Set Ground Rules

Gather Source Materials

Conduct Analysis

Design

Write and Edit

Conduct a User Test

SPECIAL CONSIDERATIONS FOR MAINTENANCE

The Inherent Structure of Maintenance

Special Analysis for Troubleshooting

Format for Troubleshooting Instructions

APPENDIX: CHECKLIST FOR DEVELOPING EASY-TO-USE INSTRUCTIONS

Planning Information

Graphics

Language Control

Text and Format

Preparing the Instructions

REFERENCES

INDEX

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
TEC009000
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Engineering (General)
TEC009060
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Industrial Engineering
TEC017000
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Industrial Health & Safety