Technical Writing Medical Process

Topic: Technical Writing Medical Process
Assignment 4: Medical Process
ENGL2338: Technical Writing Department of English University of Texas at Arlington
assignment overview
A technical process description explains how a complex event occurs. As a healthcare professional, you are often required to describe a medical process to patients, often someone who has little knowledge or experience with the subject. This assignment asks you to select a medical process and write a description of it.
In your previous writing assignment, you learned the difference between instructions and process descriptions:
 Instructions inform readers how to assemble, make or create something or how to perform a specific task.
 Process descriptions tell how something works. While instructions are about how to use something, descriptions are about how that thing works (e.g., how to
take a prescription drug vs. how that drug works in the human body).
It is important to note again that a process description is not an instruction. The difference is between how to use/do something (instructions) and how something works (process description). For this assignment, you should focus on how something works.
Assignment Guidelines
Choose a Medical Process. Begin by reviewing Gurak & Lannon, Chapter 13: Descriptions. You will choose your own topic for this assignment. However, you must choose a complex process related to the medical field. I strongly recommend you select a process with which you are already familiar, so you can focus on learning how to write the description rather than focusing on both learning how to write the description and learning about the process.
The following are just some examples of description projects from previous classes:
 How a specific drug works
 How a hearing aid works
 How wounds are infected
 How anesthesia works
Audience and Content
Your primary audience would be your patient (current or future), who has little knowledge or experience with this subject.
Regardless of the process, your final paper must be at least 500 words; you must include all of the following content in your description:
 Introduction.
 Orient your audience by providing a definition of the process.
 Preview for your audience the principle steps it involves.
 State the function of the process.
 Indicate where and when the process takes place.
 Inform your audience of the importance or implications of the process.
 If possible, include a graphic identifying all the principal steps.
 If possible, include a graphic identifying all the principal steps.
 Steps in the Process.
 Discuss the steps in chronological order.
 Show causal relationships clearly among the steps.