Course Outcomes

This military writing course will:

  • Review the basics of good writing.
  • Teach participants how to identify the bottom line in a piece of writing and place it at the beginning of the text they generate.
  • Show participants how to recognize and remove the passive voice from their text.
  • Prepare participants to craft documents on behalf of someone else.
  • Show participants how to use a style guide and comply with their organization’s stylistic preferences.

Course Overview

When lives are at stake, clear communication is crucial. Jargon, wordiness, passive voice, and hidden main messages sabotage effective transmission of information.  In keeping with the military’s most current standards for writing, this course teaches participants how to avoid the above problems while producing direct, brief, and well-organized texts.

Program Objectives

At the program’s conclusion, participants should be able to:

  • Explain what distinguishes military writing from other kinds of writing.
  • Determine when writing is the best communication method.
  • Identify the seven style rules of military writing.
  • Clearly present the main idea of a piece of writing in the initial paragraph.
  • Organize written information in a logical sequence.
  • Understand the connection between audience awareness and a writer’s style.
  • Eliminate the passive voice, wordiness, and redundancy.
  • Minimize word, sentence, and paragraph length without sacrificing clarity or substance.

The following outline highlights some of the course’s key learning points. As part of your training program, we will modify content as needed to meet your business objectives. Upon request, we will provide you with a copy of the participant materials prior to the session(s).

Course Outline

An Introduction to Effective Military Writing: Why, When, and How to Write

This introductory discussion establishes the rationale for clear, concise, and carefully ordered information in military writing situations. Participants will discuss the two broad purposes for writing: to inform and to persuade. Also, they will learn the seven elements of effective communication.

Discovering What You Really Want to Say: Finding the Bottom Line

This second segment will show participants how to state the main point of any writing task they might encounter. By reviewing examples of unfocused writing and completing exercises that require clear bottom lines, class members will understand how good writing is directly linked to a controlling idea.

Making It All Make Sense: Getting Information Organized

This part of this program addresses organization.  During this segment, participants will learn how to quickly arrange information in a logical sequence. They will also see how by placing their purpose at the start of a writing task, they will have a main idea on which to base all other sentences.

Who Goes There?: Writing for Your Audience

As important as it is to have something to say, good writers know they should understand something about the intended readers’ goals, objectives, and preferences.  This segment addresses audience analysis and contains information about how a document’s readers should govern such considerations as word choice, tone, and amount of detail included.

Common Errors: Recognizing and Correcting Embarrassing Mistakes

English is tricky and an easy language in which to make plenty of errors. This part of the program focuses on grammatical and spelling accuracy. In this workshop segment, participants will review such problematic issues as sentence construction, subject-verb agreement, passive voice, and frequently misspelled words.

Quick and Dirty Shortcuts: Effective Proofreading and Editing

It has been said that “what’s worth doing is worth doing well.” This is especially true of writing. This portion of the course covers proofreading and self-editing skills.  During this discussion, participants will learn to quickly eliminate unneeded words, arrange information logically, and correct careless mistakes before a piece of writing reaches the intended reader.

At the program’s conclusion, participants should understand what it takes to craft bottom-line documents that adhere to the stylistic preferences set forth by the military.