Process Description Assignment
Write a process description describing a process or procedure related to your
major or minor. A process description answers the question, “how does it work or
happen?” and usually occurs in stages, phases, in a cycle or a sequence.
The purpose of this assignment is to describe how a complex business or scientific
process happens in words and graphics that are simple enough for the general
public to understand. Your process description should be written at the level of
complexity of a National Geographic article.
Other things you might touch upon in your description include benefits, farreaching effects, future implications, or, conversely, consequences. The choice of
topic is important; it should be, suitably, but not overly complex.
The written description should be about 2-2 1/2 single-spaced typewritten pages
long, excluding the visuals.
To develop your written description, use a combination of the strategies
discussed in the lectures, which include the following:
A sentence, parenthetical or expanded definition two to three paragraphs
long to define the concept. Also, please define any technical terms within
Some, but not all, of the following development strategies. Choose the
strategies that best suit your topic:
Quotes, statistics, and interesting nuggets of information to describe the
concept behind the process.
An original visual or visuals:
The graphic(s) should clarify the topic you are describing, for example, show the
stages or phases of the process and not be merely decorative. Visuals can consist
of icons, a flowchart, infographic, chart, illustrations, clip art or photos.
To create the visuals, you can use:
SmartArt, InDesign, Adobe Photoshop
Icons and photos from Office 365, which aren’t usually copyrighted
Canva or Piktochart templates (see their “Infographics”) or another free
Original illustrations or photos which look professional
Please note: The visuals must be entirely original! They should not be taken
from the Web or any existing document. You should be able to depict most
generic objects or items, using images from Office 365 stock photos. Cite all
visuals that are not original. If the image has a Creative Commons license for
noncommercial use, such as “Attribution CC By,” that is also alright to use.
Creative Commons licenses may automatically embed.
Your description can be written in a traditional or nontraditional/nonlinear
structure. Make sure to break up the text with headings, subheadings, boldface
lead-ins, or bullets.
1. In a traditional, chronological structure, one central graphic will be integrated
into the description to support it, as in the Drivetrains example in your text.
2. In a nonlinear structure, separate text blocks or boxes, which may be read
independently, will be accompanied by a series of visuals. See the Frakking
example in Markel or the Ninjas vs. Superbugs example posted on Blackboard.
Only a Works Cited or References page is required for this assignment, intext citations are not. Note: Do not use Wikipedia as a source for this
An editable Google Doc emailed to me is preferred. But it’s also fine to use any
design program and email the assignment to me as an attachment. I just won’t be
able to give you much feedback.
Chapters to reference in Markel:
Chapter 6, “Researching Your Subject”
Chapter 11, “Designing Print and Online Documents”
Chapter 12, “Creating Graphics”
Chapter 20, “Writing Definitions, Descriptions and Instructions
Office 365 Pro Plus
Examples posted on Blackboard
Piktochart (has free templates and visuals, but there’s a limit on them.)
Grading: 15% of overall grade