Asee peer logo

Collaborative Development Of An Engineering Style Manual

Download Paper |


2005 Annual Conference


Portland, Oregon

Publication Date

June 12, 2005

Start Date

June 12, 2005

End Date

June 15, 2005



Conference Session

Communication Skills in Aerospace Engineering

Page Count


Page Numbers

10.316.1 - 10.316.16



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Patric McElwain

author page

James Helbling

author page

Angela Beck

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

COLLABORATIVE DEVELOPMENT OF AN ENGINEERING STYLE MANUAL Jim Helbling, Department of Aerospace Engineering, Angela Beck, Department of Humanities/Communications, Patric McElwain, Department of Humanities/Communications

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Prescott, Arizona

Abstract This paper recounts the development, testing, and publication of a style manual at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University/Prescott Campus. This manual was jointly developed by faculty at the College of Engineering and the Department of Humanities/Communications in response to faculty concerns that, despite a required course in Technical Report Writing devoted to engineering students, these students were still having difficulty mastering the organization, formatting, and technical style of lab reports and other professional genre. This paper introduces the project and its academic context, describes the process by which the manual was composed and classroom tested, and outlines future plans for similar manuals at Embry-Riddle based upon the success of the College of Engineering Style Manual. Sample entries from the manual are provided in a set of Appendices as well.

Introduction The following sections describe the development of the College of Engineering (COE) Style Manual at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU) in Prescott, Arizona. The manual was developed as a cooperative effort between the COE and the Department of Humanities/Communications (HU/COM) at ERAU to create a document that provided engineering students with basic guidelines for technical-writing assignments.

The impetus for creating this document was twofold. First, the manual was to address a perceived lack of written communication skills possessed by graduating seniors as identified in recent alumni surveys. Second, it was to provide a consistent template for engineering lab students to follow in creating lab reports, a genre critical to many engineering courses.

This paper begins by explaining the context that led to the development of the manual. This development process is described in detail in the subsequent sections, where the organization, composition, and testing and revision of the document is explained. This discussion is followed by a description of how the manual has been implemented in various engineering courses. The paper concludes with a discussion of plans for similar manuals at ERAU/Prescott.

Proceedings of the 2005 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright© 2005, American Society for Engineering Education

McElwain, P., & Helbling, J., & Beck, A. (2005, June), Collaborative Development Of An Engineering Style Manual Paper presented at 2005 Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon. 10.18260/1-2--15270

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2005 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015