Unfortunately, too many of us are focused on the content we are writing that we lose sight entirely on what the audience needs to know and of the context in which they will interpret and understand what is being presented. Too often, we think our audience as having the same interest and values and knowledge as we have. To make our communication more effective we must engage the audience’s attention, be ware of its concerns and enable it to make the decision or the action we want. We must be able to understand the context of our communication from the audience’s points of view so that our presentations will be received and understood the way we want them to be.
The article by Bernadette Longo is about how the author is supposed to communicate with the non- technical audience. This means the audience who usually are not well acquitted to what the author is trying to communicate to his or her viewers. This is where the author wants to present a situation to that audience who do not know the subject matter and the author wants to educate them and convince them about the situation. In such a situation, the author is very careful on the different ways that he or she is going to use that it would be easier to communicate or to be on the same page with the audience (MacLennan, 2007).
On the other hand, in the article by Burton Urquhart is about how the author is supposed to communicate with a technical or engineering audience. This is the kind of audience, which may have knowledge about what the author is going talking about in his work. Despite the audience knowing what the author’s subject matter is, the author must try to convince the audience the importance of the subject matter. This has to be done using several stages so that they can be on the same page (Urquhart, 2007). Therefore, several ways that the two articles have described will be best used in order for the author to be able to communicate with the different authors.
In determining how to communicate to the non-technical audience by Longo, several steps are involved, the first step being that of knowing the audience. In this step, the author has to formulate different questions so that he or she can get to evaluate and know what the audience knows about the topic in discussion. Additionally using the same questions, the author has to ask himself or herself how the audience values the subject matter because the author would like to know the extent that he or she is going to explain and where not to explain (MacLennan, 2007).
After performing an analysis about the audience, the second step is to write on the subject based on the analysis that has been conducted. In this step, two things are generally communicated. One of the things the author communicates to the audience is the appeal of the subject matter. In this case, the author has to write in the consideration of what the audience value in the topic. Therefore, the author has to write what is important by excluding what is not important. The second thing is to bridge the gap between the author and the audience. In this situation, the author will write on what the audience on know about the topic and relate it to what the audience does not know (MacLennan, 2007). By doing so, the author has the ability to communicate with any kind of non-technical audience with a lot of ease and make them understand what he or she is talking about in his or her work.
On the contrary, the article by Urquhart, he has talked about how to communicate with an audience that is technical and knows what the author is about to present. For instance, how the author is going to present himself to total strangers who are well acquitted of the presentation. Since the audience knows, what the author is talking about, repeating what they know it will be boring for them and it will not be appealing. Here he needs to persuade them on what they really do not know so that the presentation can be captivating to the audience. Therefore, the author has to find out what the audience does not know and how the new information, which they do not know, will be of help to them. After this has been done, the author can prepare the presentation, which is convincing to the audience (Urquhart, 2007). It can be noted that in the article by Longo, the audience needs to be introduced first to a background in which they are familiar with so that they can now relate to the topic that they do not know. In contrast to this, the second article by Urquhart, the author must gauge the audience by using three questions, which will help in evaluating what the audience to do not know and wants to know.
Therefore, it should be noted that in the two articles they are trying to understand what the audience feel about their work or presentation. This means that the different authors are trying to understand what the different audience perspective about what they are presenting in order to be able to communicate with them. It is because of this that it has been noted that the different authors, must try to ask question about the different audience they have so that they can gauge what they know about the topic. After they have known this, they will be able to know the kind of audience they are dealing with and it is through this that they will be able to act accordingly and present their information to the audience. However, one must make sure that he or she has understood what is their audience perspective or views about their presentations so that they can be able to communicate to the different kinds of audience. When the different authors have known what the different kinds of readers view, their presentation then it will be easier for them to communicate to the different kinds of audience.
MacLennan, Jennifer. Readings for Technical Communication. Toronto: Oxford UP Canada, 2007.
Urquhart, Burton. Bridging Gaps, Engineering Audiences: Understanding the Communicative Situation. Toronto: Oxford UP Canada, 2007