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Writing Manual

 

Howard Burpee, Professor, Information Technology, 207.956.0850, howardburpee@ctech.smccme.edu

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Writing Manual


Writing Manual


As either a student, or a professional in the workplace, the ability to create well written and formal documents is a very valuable skill.  The purpose of this writing manual is so that the student will learn, and put into practice, the creation of formal, professionally produced, written documentation. 

A student, when completing a written assignment should use all available resources, including application / operating help screens (FIRST!), course textbooks (SECOND!), online resources (HOW-TO DOCUMENTS FIRST, FORUMS AND WIKIPEDIA FOURTH!).

When writing the document a student should never copy and paste from any type of resource.

When creating a written assignment document, a student should:

  • Access resources containing information relevant to the topic (see above).

  • Read, analyze, and parse the information to the best of their ability.

  • Create the written document to be submitted in their own words that meets the formatting specifications below.

  • A document submitted by a student that includes as much as a complete sentence, or partial sentence, that has been copied directly from any type of resource will be considered as plagiarism, as specified in the SMCC Academic Honesty Policy (link).
     
  • Any type of assignment submitted by a student found to be plagiarized in any way shall be penalized according to the following rubric:
    • First offense = redo / resubmit the assignment = -50% grade penalty
    • Second offense = student will be reported to the colleges disciplinary committee and will fail the class.

 

Formatting specifications:

All written assignments created and submitted to the Professor as a hard copy (printed document) and must conform to the document formatting specifications below. 

Note: On-line, HTML based documentation, when required, should follow best practices for on-line documentation as explained at: http://www.prismnet.com/~hcexres/textbook/instrux.html  
 

Each page of the assignment, not including the cover page, shall include the following components.
 

  1. Page header, 8 point type
    • Student name
    • Date
       
  2. Page Footer, 8 point type
    • Course code and section #
    • Page #, if more than one page
       
  3. Body text, 12 or 14 point type, headings and titles may be larger point size, margins no larger than 1.5 inches and line spacing of no more than 1.5 lines
     
  4. Any assignment that consists of more than 2 sheets of paper must have a cover page.
    • The cover page must include the following:
    • Course code, course name and section #
    • Name of the assignment
    • Student name
    • Minimum of 18-point type in a standard font, e.g. Times New Roman, Arial or equivalent.
       
  5. The cover may include graphical images at the studentís option. The images must be located after the required text.
     
  6. Assignments consisting of more than two pages must be stapled together. Please do not use any type of folder or cover.
     
  7. All written assignments shall include a bibliography that will identify any printed references, Internet references, lecture notes, etc. used a source of information contained in the assignment

    Note: A written assignment, as defined by the instructor, is any document that the student creates, prints, and submits to the instructor as a requirement of this course.

     

Grading of Written Assignments:
The following grading rubric is used for all written assignments.
 

  • For an assignment to be accepted for grading, the assignment must be original work created by the individual student.
     
  • Any form of plagiarism shall not be accepted.
     

FOR AN A GRADE, THE FOLLOWING ELEMENTS MUST BE PRESENT:

  • Technical:
    • The document follows all aspects of the writing manual
    • All aspects of the assignment are complete.
    • All questions are answered in a complete and thorough manner.
    • Responses are grammatically correct.
    • Responses indicate proofreading that eliminates spelling and punctuation errors.
       
  • Logical:
    • Ideas logically follow one another.
    • Detailed examples to support responses (when necessary) are evident.
    • Responses are presented in a structured and logical manner.
       
  • Reflective:
    • Reflection on the writerís learning is evident.
    • Lecture notes, reading material, and personal experiences are integrated into responses.
    • The writer provides periodic evidence of original, creative thinking with synthesis and analysis.
       

FOR A B GRADE, THE FOLLOWING ELEMENTS MUST BE PRESENT:

  • Technical:
    • The document follows most aspects of the writing manual.
    • All questions have an answer.
    • Most questions are answered in a complete and thorough manner1.
    • The majority of responses are grammatically correct.
    • Responses indicate proofreading that eliminates all but a few spelling and punctuation errors.
       
  • Logical:
    • Most of the responses are presented logically and sequentially.
    • All responses are presented in complete sentences, except for bulleted items.
    • Most responses are presented in a structured and logical manner.
       
  • Reflective:
    • Most responses have some detailed information with periodic examples (when necessary).
    • Logic and organization are evident.
       

FOR A C GRADE, THE FOLLOWING ELEMENTS MUST BE PRESENT:

  • Technical:
    • The document follows some aspects of the writing manual.
    • All questions have an answer.
       
  • Logical:
    • Most responses are presented in complete sentences, except for bulleted items.
       
  • Reflective:
    • Logic and organization are evident.

 

Writing Resources:

 

1 A complete and thorough answer to a question on a written assignment should be a minimum of 75 words, and should include a definition, an example, and an analogy.

 

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