Description of Istanbul

For this assignment you will either be creating a technical description or an extended technical definition.


Officially, an extended technical definition is a micro genre of a technical description, but there are some differences worth noting. Technical descriptions are “longer explanation[s] . . . of the physical or operational features of an object, mechanism, or process” (Markel 534). While technical descriptions include technical definitions, an extended technical definition is slightly different.

An extended definition includes the three parts of a basic sentence definition, “[1] the term being defined, [2] the category in which the term belongs, and [3] the distinguishing features that differentiate it from its category” (Johnson Sheehan 155).  It also expands the definition by adding more details of an object, process, or idea (Markel 534). It is divided by adding some (all) of the following: examples, partition, and principle of operation, analogy, negation, and etymology (Markel 538 – 541).


Technical descriptions need a title/indication of the nature/scope of what the description will accomplish; an introduction that answers the questions in table 20.1 on page 545; a body with appropriate detail that discusses each step or section with detail, creativity, and clarity; and a conclusion that usually explains how the steps work together or summarizes the main steps. Look at the guidelines on page 547 for writing tips and additional help.

What you choose to do this on is up to you.  You are free to choose any object, place, or process (and the definition of these can be pretty loose—think about my spider example).  If you want to choose something that interests you, something you currently work with, something from your future workplace, or something else entirely—go for it. If you want to do something out of the ordinary you can always ask me if it’s okay.

Organizing Content Visually to Show Contrasts

Organization content often relies on contrast, this is based in Gestalt psychology (which I’d highly recommend looking up). It can be divided into enhancing contrast, typeface, and grids.

Enhancing Contrast

Contrast can be achieved through multiple methods such as juxtaposing changes in size, shape, color, weight, saturation, and position as well as by using pictures within pictures, text within text, and pictures in relation to texts (Shriver 392). Remember that contrast in print and online format follow different rules.


Use serif fonts for body text and sans serif for headings in the USA in print and sans serif in online formats. Type size should be 10-point to 14-point depending on the audience. Uppercase letters mixed with lowercase makes for the easiest reading in US audiences.



One visual method of laying out documents is incorporating grids. Grids are modular systems designed to display spatially shaping “content in columns and rows” (Shriver 402).



Signaling Structural Relationships

You need to signal to your audience how visual and verbal elements of your text relate to each other.


To signal something verbally means organizing large content into layers. The major ways to achieve this is through devices like previews, summaries, sidebars, headings, subheadings, topic sentences, advance questions, logical connectives (this means things like “next”, “and”), structural cues (words like “first”, “second”, “on the other hand”), metadiscursive cues (referring to earlier points made or injecting an objective force into the conversation), pull quotes, legends, and captions (Shriver 397)


Connie Malamed has written research that visual structural relationships are noticed by readers immediately even if they are unaware of the methods being used (qtd. in Shriver 397). This means that as technical communicators we need to become aware of visual devices that help audience’s structure information so that they can do this subconscious work. It can often be done through typographic techniques (like headings, avoiding orphans/widows, etc.) and graphic techniques like size, position, weight, style, repetition, and alignment (Shriver 396).


Do you need help with this assignment or any other? We got you! Place your order and leave the rest to our experts.

Quality Guaranteed

Any Deadline

No Plagiarism