Elements of Visual Communication

 Melissa Clarkson This brief tutorial introduces the foundational elements of visual communication. The emphasis is on techniques to graphically communicate (A) hierarchy, (B) grouping and (C) sequence— three concepts that are critical for designing effective figures, posters, and slides. Here is an overview of the strategy: Position, … [Read more...]

Michael Alley on Presentation Delivery in Engineering Contexts

At the IEEE PCS 2014 conference, Michael Alley, winner of the Ronald S. Blicq award for Distinction in Technical Communication, gave an engaging talk on the gap between what is expected of engineers in their professional presentations and what is taught in their classrooms, concluding with a need to revitalize teaching oral presentation … [Read more...]

“Design your slides to maximize Signal to Noise Ratio”

Most engineers are familiar with the concept of signal to noise ratio: maximizing signal and minimizing noise is a governing principle in communication technology design. What some may not know is that the concept can also be used in information and document design, where it is also considered a governing principle, especially in the design of … [Read more...]

“Slide Titles … Scratch that … Use Sentence Headers for Clarity and Focus in Slide Design”

In many engineering presentations, slide headers are used to indicate the topic or subject of a slide. As in this case study presented by Technical Arts Consulting, this usually involves a sentence fragment, such as in this visual [1]. But a title such as “Platinum Catalyst + Aqueous Solution” does not effectively frame the technical content; … [Read more...]