Human Factors for Technical Communicators
A crash course in human factors theory and practice for technical communicators
If you're a technical writer, technical editor, documentation manager, user-interface designer, usability tester, or any other type of technical communication professional, you've probably found yourself becoming more and more involved in the development, design, and testing of technical communication products. In order to handle your expanded responsibilities effectively you need a solid grounding in human factors, the art and science of designing for people. And now this book gives it to you--fast.
First, expert Marlana Coe takes you on a fascinating tour of the burgeoning science of human factors. In terms that you can understand, she explains all about the psychology and physiology of how users access, learn, and remember information; the impact of colors, shapes, and patterns; learning styles; approaches and obstacles to problem solving; action structures; and more. And, with the help of real-life examples of various technical communication products, she vividly demonstrates what works, what doesn't, and why.
Then, she shows you how to apply what you've learned to create the best technical communication products possible. You'll find out how to:
* Analyze users' needs and learning styles
* Get and interpret user feedback and create partnerships with users
* Select the most effective layouts, colors, fonts, and graphics
* Build better navigational infrastructures
* Develop content that gives users everything they need to quickly identify and resolve problems
* Test and improve your product's usability
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CHAPTER ONE Introduction
CHAPTER THREE Learning
CHAPTER FOUR Memory
11 other sections not shown
action structure brain brainstorming build chunks cognitive process color components Computer concept Consider this scenario create Culture Association declarative memory deductive reasoning design and develop Documentation encoding environment evaluation example existing schemata experience feedback Figure fonts functional fixedness graphics habit family hardcopy information help system help users heterarchies hierarchy Human Factors HyperCard hyperlinks Hypertext icons IEEE interact Interface knowledge layout learning styles leverage long-term memory manual meaningful means media type Microsoft Word mind mapping navigational infrastructure neuronal object obstacles to problem online help online information panel paperwalk perceptual set presentation problem domain problem solving procedural memory prototypes psychological reference reinforcement retrieve schema semantic sensation sensory adaptation sensory data sensory registers short-term memory stage STC Proceedings stop sign storyboard subtext syllogism technical communicators technical information Text tion understand universal usability testing user curves users need visual words writing York
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Content & Complexity: Information Design in Technical Communication
Michael J. Albers,Beth Mazur
No preview available - 2003