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Writing and Designing Manuals and Warnings, Fifth Edition


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Table of Contents

Part 1: Product Safety in the 21st Century. 1. The Changing Landscape. 2. Know Your Users and Your Product's Hazards. Part 2: The Making of a Manual (Or More Than One!). 3. Designing a User-Friendly Manual. 4. What You See is What You Read...or Not. 5. A Picture is Worth...It Depends. 6. Thinking Outside the Books. 7. Special-Purpose Manuals. Part 3: You Have Been Warned. 8. The Duty to Warn. 9. Warnings that Work. Part 4: Making It Work in the Real World. 10. Who Writes a Manual? 11. Integrated Product Safety: The Manual is Just the Beginning.

About the Author

Patricia A. Robinson has been involved in technical writing for forty years. After earning her Ph.D. (in a different field) she joined the faculty of the University of Wisconsin-Madison College of Engineering where she taught technical writing for thirteen years. During her tenure at the University, the technical communication program grew from a single report-writing course into a full certificate program. She served as the first Director of that program. Dr. Robinson also served as program director and primary instructor for continuing education seminars for practicing technical writers and engineers, covering everything from Effective Speaking to Managing the Technical Publications Department. An early invitation to teach an in-plant course on operator manuals for a farm implement manufacturer led to an unexpected-but greatly satisfying-career focus on instructions and warnings. Dr. Robinson is the author of Fundamentals of Technical Writing and co-author of Effective Writing Strategies for Engineers and Scientists. She has also published articles in various professional journals and presented papers at professional conferences. She is a regular speaker at product liability seminars on the role of instructions and warnings. Dr. Robinson is a Full Member of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, a member of IEEE, and a member of the ANSI Z535.6 subcommittee.As owner of Coronado Consulting Services, LLC, Dr. Robinson consults widely for industry both in the United States and internationally, and occasionally provides expert testimony related to instructions and warnings. Dr. Robinson presently makes her home in a small southern Arizona community, where horses and cattle considerably outnumber humans. She can be reached at pat@coronadoconsulting.com.


"Writing and Designing Manuals and Warnings is intended as a reference fortechnical writers, marketing directors,product safety managers, and anyone involved with or interested in manuals, manufacturing, and safety. This bookhas been the authoritative resource in instructional writing and manual design since its first published editionin 1984."-Michael Opsteegh, Certified Technical Professional Communicator

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