A directory of resources inthe field of technical communication.

Miller, Carolyn R.

12 found.

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A Bibliography of Basic Texts in Technical And Scientific Writing

Instruction in writing beyond the freshman level takes a variety of forms, all of which may be thought of as 'advanced' composition. One of the best established forms and one that shows all signs of continuing growth is technical writing. Although some teachers of traditional advanced composition may blanche at the comparison, I believe it helpful to take the relationship seriously. Technical writing is a form of advanced composition that relies upon well defined audiences and writer-roles, and that addresses itself to specific purposes found in industrial, manufacturing, research and development, and other bureaucratic and technological contexts. It is its specificity that makes technical writing distinct, but, like all advanced composition, its general function is to help students muster their linguistic and rhetorical resources to have effects on readers.

Miller, Carolyn R. JAC (1982). Resources>Bibliographies>TC


Blogging as Social Action: A Genre Analysis of the Weblog

The weblog phenomenon raises a number of rhetorical issues, including the peculiar intersection of the public and private that weblogs seem to invite.

Miller, Carolyn R. Into the Blogosphere (2004). Articles>Rhetoric>Online>Blogging


Communication in the 21st Century: The Original Liberal Art in an Age of Science and Technology   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Communication is dramatically changed by new technologies. In the 20th century, we have seen the effects of the telephone, radio and television, film, high-speed printing, xerography, desk-top publishing, electronic mail. These communication technologies have changed our national political life, corporate management styles, family connections, individual work habits. Additional change in the next century is inevitable, as we adopt video conferencing, multimedia, and internet technologies. Many of the effects of new technologies are unpredictable: the predicted 'paperless office' has failed to materialize, for example, and word-processing software has transformed the labor of writing in a way that was never anticipated (and later was resisted) by computer developers. But some aspects of communication, both oral and written, have not changed. Communication is still the social glue that holds together nations, corporations, scientific disciplines, and families.

Miller, Carolyn R. North Carolina State University (1996). Articles>Communication>Online


Genre as Social Action   (PDF)   (peer-reviewed)

Although rhetorical criticism has recently provided a profusion of claims that certain discourses constitute a distinctive class, or genre, rhetorical theory has not provided firm guidance on what constitutes a genre.

Miller, Carolyn R. Quarterly Journal of Speech (1984). Articles>Rhetoric>Genre>Theory


A Humanistic Rationale for Technical Writing   (PDF)   (peer-reviewed)

A discussion of how to argue that technical writing has humanistic value. Reviewing the common belief (at least in 1979) that tech writing was of necessity a 'skills' course, this article counters the traditional 'plain style' rhetorical theory by suggesting possibilities for professional and theoretical alternatives for the field.

Miller, Carolyn R. North Carolina State University (1979). Articles>TC>Rhetoric>Minimalism


IText: Future Directions for Research on the Relationship between Information Technology and Writing   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

The vast majority of people who use information technology (IT) every day use IT in textcentered interactions. In e-mail, we compose and read texts. On the Web, we read (and often compose) texts. And when we create and refer to the appointments and notes in our personal digital assistants, we use texts. Texts, as already a technology in themselves, are deeply embedded in cultural, cognitive, and material arrangements that go back thousands of years. Information technologies with texts at their core — the blend of IT and texts that we call ITexts — are, by contrast, a relatively recent development. To participate with other information researchers in shaping the evolution of these ITexts, researchers and scholars concerned with the production and reception of text must build on a knowledge base and articulate issues, a task undertaken in this article. We begin by reviewing the existing foundations for a research program in IText, then go on to scope out issues for research over the next five to seven years. We direct particular attention to the evolving character of ITexts and to their impact on society. By undertaking this research, we urge ourselves and others to play a part in the continuing evolution of technologies of text.

Geisler, Cheryl, Charles Bazerman, Stephen Doheny-Farina, Laura J. Gurak, Christina Haas, Johndan Johnson-Eilola, David S. Kaufer, Andrea Lunsford, Carolyn R. Miller, Dorothy Winsor and JoAnne Yates. Journal of Business and Technical Communication (2001). Articles>Writing>Online


Reading Darwin, Reading Nature; or, On the Ethos of Historical Science   (PDF)

Darwin must be read and reread, interpreted and reinterpreted. We find this attention to a body of work that is well over a hundred years old to be highly unusual and worth investigating.

Miller, Carolyn R. and S. Michael Halloran. North Carolina State University (1993). Articles>Scientific Communication>History>Rhetoric


The Rhetoric of Decision Science, or Herbert A. Simon Says   (PDF)

The tools of decision science are widely used and accepted in industrial and governmental decision making. But...

Miller, Carolyn R. North Carolina State University (1991). Articles>Rhetoric>Theory


Rhetorical Community: The Cultural Basis of Genre   (PDF)   (peer-reviewed)

Our understanding of genre as social action afflicts the typical first-year college writing program in the United States. It turns what should be a practical art of achieving social ends into a productive art of making texts that fit certain formal requirements.

Miller, Carolyn R. North Carolina State University (1994). Articles>Education>Writing>Rhetoric


Special Topics of Argument in Engineering Reports   (PDF)

As a discussion of writing-across-the-curriculum programs in universities, his essay focuses on disciplinary discourse within academic settings. Nonacademic discourse also occurs with particular conventions, purposes and institutions; such discourse can be subjected to similar study.

Miller, Carolyn R. and Jack Selzer. North Carolina State University (1985). Articles>Writing>Reports>Engineering


What's Practical About Technical Writing?   (PDF)   (peer-reviewed)   (members only)

Courses and programs in technical writing are both praised and damned for being "practical." But since technical writing is singled out for being practical, it's worth considering what makes it so.

Miller, Carolyn R. North Carolina State University (1989). Articles>Writing>Technical Writing>Rhetoric


Writing in a Culture of Simulation: Ethos Online   (PDF)   (peer-reviewed)

The MUD Bot Julia and the Turing test can help us understand some things about writing in new technological environments. These environments belong to what Sherry Turkle has called our “culture of simulation” (Turkle, 1997). She takes the term simulation from postmodern theorist Jean Baudrillard, who maintains that the proliferation of signs in contemporary society has “imploded” the distinction between the real and the simulated: the world of signs has become “hyperreal,” overwhelming the physical world and replacing it as our primary experience.

Miller, Carolyn R. North Carolina State University (2002). Articles>Rhetoric>Online

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