BUSINESS 1104: Written Business Communications
FALL SEMESTER 2008 August 25 – December 19
Anoka-Ramsey Community College
300 Spirit River Drive South
Cambridge Campus Center: Room CC-F222 Semester Credits: 3
Days/Times: Wednesdays Aug 27 – Dec 17 6:30 – 9:10 p.m.
Office Hours: Wednesdays (before & after class) 5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
Tues/Thurs 11:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.
(or by appointment in Faculty Suite Office CC-F115)
Instructor: MaryAnn David Telephone: 651.674.4134 (home)
Campus: 763.433.1879 (leave message)
Instructor’s Web page http://webs.anokaramsey.edu/david
This Web page contains the college course description, syllabus, activities calendar, assignments calendar, and
up-to-date student grades (unofficial) for this class. You will also be able to access MS PowerPoint slides used in
class and links to other helpful business Web sites.
Required Text Essentials of Business Communication by Mary Ellen Guffey
7th Edition (2007), Thomson South-Western Publishing
Publisher’s Web Site for Students http://guffey.swlearning.com
Written Business Communications is a professional writing course. It is designed to
help you develop and strengthen skills of effective business and professional
communications in both written and oral modes. Writing business messages that are
receiver-focused, concise, conversational, clear, and positive is fundamental to this course.
Students apply direct, indirect, and persuasive writing styles to the creation of business reports, employment
messages, letters, memos, and electronic mail messages. Teaching/learning methods will include reading, close
analysis of business and professional documents, in-class writing and oral exercises, lectures, formal writing
assignments, and English grammar quizzes.
General Course Purpose
This course serves students who will work in business and industry where they must analyze
problems, organize ideas logically, and express those ideas correctly and persuasively to
customers, the public, and other workers at all levels of organizations. Students learn to
write memos that monitor operations and gain support; business letters that deliver
information, satisfy customers, and persuade readers; resumes and letters of application,
recommendation, and follow-up; reports that analyze problems and offer solutions. Students will (a) use
technological tools to produce and research writing, (b) recognize and apply intercultural sensitivity and ethical
considerations when writing, (c) work within a team to produce documents, (d) apply formatting and style
techniques currently used in business, and (e) use critical-thinking skills to analyze and solve business problems.
BUS 1104 Business Communications Fall 2008 Page 1
Upon successful completion of this course a student will be able to:
1. Explain the importance of communication skills for knowledge workers in the workplace.
2. Adapt messages to intercultural audiences.
3. Explain the importance of task analysis and audience participation in writing.
4. Apply writing techniques that help authors adapt messages to their audiences.
5. Recognize language that may generate litigation.
6. Organize data into lists and alphanumeric outlines.
7. Compare and apply direct and indirect patterns for organizing ideas.
8. Create forceful sentences and compose effective paragraphs.
9. Apply revision techniques that make documents clear, conversational, concise, and vigorous.
10. Evaluate a message to judge its success.
11. Compose letters requesting information and action, placing orders, making claims, complying with
requests, acknowledging customer orders, granting claims and making adjustments.
12. Modify international letters to accommodate other cultures.
13. Write information and procedure memos, request and reply memos, and confirmation memos.
14. Write e-mail messages that are concise and informative.
15. Identify when to apply an indirect pattern to writing when delivering bad news.
16. Apply strategies to writing that refuses customer requests, denies claims, conveys negative
organization news while retaining goodwill.
17. Deliver persuasive yet ethical arguments to readers.
18. Write messages that deliver thanks, recognition, and sympathy.
19. Distinguish between informational and analytical reports.
20. Describe four report formats and three formats for documenting data sources.
21. Use tabulating and statistical techniques to sort and interpret report data.
22. Draw meaningful conclusions from report data.
23. Prepare practical report recommendations.
24. Organize report data logically and provide cues to aid report comprehension.
25. Compare and contrast chronological, functional, and combination resumes.
26. Organize, format, and produce a persuasive resume.
27. Identify techniques that prepare resumes for computer scanning and faxing.
28. Write a persuasive letter of application to accompany a resume.
29. Write effective employment follow-up letters and other employment-related messages.
30. Work within a team to produce documents.
31. Use computer software and the Internet to produce documents.
32. Apply correct formatting and style to documents.
ATTENDANCE - Your attendance and participation is expected at each session for
the entire period.
Class attendance has a significant impact on your learning experience, especially in this fast-paced class
If you are unable to attend, it is your responsibility to notify the instructor.
If a student misses more than one class period, a reduction in grade may occur unless timely
arrangements have been made with the instructor.
Failure to contact the instructor before (or immediately after) a missed class session may result in
loss of credit, loss of option to make up required work, and/or a reduction in grade on missed or late
If you require specific instructional accommodations, please notify the instructor immediately.
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ASSIGNMENTS - Assignments must be completed by the assigned deadline—typically within one week of
the class in which it is introduced. Late items will receive a reduction in grade.
Remember: quality vs quantity.
If a student misses a class period, they must complete all required assignments.
Complete chapter readings BEFORE coming to class!
In-class computer lab time may be assigned during class to complete assignments.
Additional computer lab time outside of class will need to be scheduled to complete and type all
assignments. Professional-looking documents are important!
Please TYPE all assignments and include name, date, & assignment chapter # on all papers.
GRADES - Students may elect to pursue a grade option (A-F) or Pass only option
To earn a Pass (P) grade, a student must attend each class session and
complete all assignments to at least a “C” level. Please inform instructor of
this choice within first two weeks of class.
Generally, each homework assignment will have a value of 10 points, if completed
satisfactorily, and turned in by due date.
Late assignments will receive a 10 percent points deduction.
Assignments handed in on-time and graded with a point value of less than 6, may be corrected, re-
done, and re-submitted the following week only; re-done assignments will receive a 10 percent points
Additional points will be given for in-class activities participation and may not be made up.
This is a fast-paced, intensive course that will require a good understanding of English grammar, spelling, and
punctuation rules. Proofreading and revisions are extremely important when preparing business documents. All
writing assignments should be final drafts and of the quality acceptable for submitting to a supervisor.
REFER OFTEN to a dictionary, Appendices A, B, & C (pages A-1 to A-21), and the Grammar/Mechanics Handbook
in your textbook (pages GM-1 to GM-47). PROOFREAD – PROOFREAD – PROOFREAD ! You are responsible
for the quality of your own work; be conscientious and proud of the effort you put into every assignment.
Student E-Mail Account
ARCC and your instructor use your ARCC-assigned e-mail account as the primary method
of communicating with you. Via e-mail, you may receive messages about class
cancellations, class assignments, registration dates, etc. Please make sure you have set
up your free MetNet e-mail account; follow directions on-line at www.AnokaRamsey.edu.
November 26, 2008, is the last day that students may withdraw (W) from the course. To withdraw from a
course, a student must complete a Course Change Form (available in the Admissions/Records Office). If, during
the semester, things are going badly for you at school or life in general, do not just drop out of sight. See a
college counselor or your instructor; there may be other options you have not considered.
Weather Emergency/School Closing Information
Emergency school closing announcements are broadcast on WCCO 830 AM radio. For the
cancellation to be valid, it must specifically say “Anoka-Ramsey Community College,
Cambridge Campus.” Cambridge Campus will close only under extreme conditions; students
should use their own judgment when traveling.
BUS 1104 Business Communications Fall 2008 Page 3
Plagiarism & Cheating
The concept of plagiarism can be confusing, and there is a difference between deliberate and accidental
plagiarism. However, both will be treated the same in this course. The following Web site offers an excellent
definition of both deliberate and accidental plagiarism: <http://www.millikin.edu/wcenter/plagiarism1.html>
Plagiarism defined: "Plagiarism includes the copying of the language, structure, ideas, and/or thoughts of
another and passing off the same as one's own, original work, or attempts thereof" (from Virginia Tech Honor
System Constitution, February 1998).
If plagiarized work is suspected and proven, or if a student is caught cheating in any way, the student will
receive a “0” for the entire assignment/project and is subject to sanctions outlined in the Student Code of
Conduct. This does include copying another student’s work or permitting another student to copy your work.
Avoid plagiarism by proper citation of your sources (textbook pg A-17 & A-18). Writing tutors are also available
in the Academic Support Center to help you with citing sources.
Be Respectful. Be Responsible. Rise to the Challenge.
By enrolling in this course, you have become a welcomed member of a community of learners, an honor
and a privilege for each one of us. Your membership in this community and your success in this course
are dependent upon your ability to be respectful, be responsible, and rise to the challenge. One of the rewards
of this challenge can be the discovery that you are capable of much more than you imagined—expect great
things from yourself, work hard to achieve them, and seek help when you need it. It’s up to you!
Please periodically monitor your own coursework grades (may be viewed on instructor’s Web
page). If you feel you are falling behind, talk to your instructor.
Your grade for the course will be based on the following:
25% Assignments/Exercises (homework, projects, writings, small-group activities,
25% Employment Package (résumé, cover letter, and follow-up Thank You letter)
25% Report Outline, Works Cited, & Oral Presentation
25% Quizzes & Final Exam (performance-based exercises, grammar/mechanics quizzes,
& traditional t/f & m/c exam questions)
Final course grades will be calculated in the following manner:
A = 90% - 100% C = 70% - 79% F = Below 60%
B = 80% - 89% D = 60% - 69%
Education is the key to success.
It’s up to YOU!
If I went back to college again, I’d concentrate on two areas: learning to write and to speak before an
audience. Nothing in life is more important than the ability to communicate effectively.
BUS 1104 Business Communications Fall 2008 Page 4
—Gerald R. Ford, 38th President of the United States
BUS 1104: Schedule of Classes and Assignments (Tentative – Subject to change)
DATE TOPIC DUE THE NEXT CLASS FOLLOWING
Wednesday CHAPTER DISCUSSION
15 Ways to Lose Out & Action Plan (handout)
Ch 1: Building Your Career Success
Aug 27 1 Listening Survey (handout)
With Communication Skills
Listening Journal (handout)
P Journal: others’ nonverbal communications
Ch 2: Creating Business Messages
Sept 3 Turn in (Sept 17) a Business Report Topic (see
Persuasion Letter (in-class writing today)
pg 370 list or suggest one)
Commonly Misused Words (study guide handout)
C Activity 3.1 (pg 76): Turn in List
Sept 10 Ch 3: Improving Writing Techniques
Misused Words (in-class QUIZ today)
Ch 4: Revising and Proofreading Turn in a Business Report Topic today
Business Messages t Confusing Words Worksheet 3 (handout)
QUIZ #1: Chapters 1-4 C Activity 5.4 (pg 124) – Memo
Ch 5: E-Mail and Memorandums Grammar Challenge – 5 (pg 131): in class
Ben & Jerry’s Letter (Video Library 2 pg 167)
Ch 6: Direct Letters & Goodwill
Oct 1 – Write Brief Letter
Activity 6.27 (pg 167) – Memo
C Activity 9.6 (pg 261) – Progress Report E-mail
Confusing Words Worksheet 5 (handout)
Ch 9: Informal Reports
Oct 8 Activity 10.8 (pg 306) – Works Cited listing of
Ch 10: Proposals and Formal Reports
your Business Report (use format pg 300)
Read: Assessing Web Docs (pg 313-314)
Oct 15 Ch 7: Persuasive Messages C Activity 7.17 (pg 196) – Brief Sales Letter
C Video Library 2 (pg 233) – Write Brief Letter
QUIZ #2: Chapters 5-7, 9, 10
Oct 22 Read: Writing Coach (pg 224-225)
Ch 8: Negative Messages
Confusing Words Worksheet 7 (handout)
Ch 11: Communicating in Person, in Work on Business Report research
Meetings, by Telephone, & Digitally Activity 11.7 (pg 338-39) – Memo
Activity 12.6 (pg 368) – Memo
Nov 5 Ch 12: Making Oral Presentations Activity 12.7 (pg 369) – Your Rept Outline (draft)
( Read: Team Presentations (pg 373-374)
Activity 13.3 (pg 413) – Memo
QUIZ #3: Chapters 8, 11, 12 Activity 13.4 (pg 413) - Worksheets
Nov 12 Ch 13: The Job Search, Résumés, & Activity 13.10 (pg 414)–Cover Ltr DUE 12/3
Cover Letters Activity 13.7 (pg 414) – Job Ad (for résumé)
Activity 13.9 (pg 414) – Résumé DUE 12/3
Activity 14.12 (pg 446) – List of Questions
Ch 14: Employment Interviewing &
Nov 19 Activity 14.15 (pg 447) – Follow-Up Thank You
Letter DUE 12/3
BUS 1104 Business Communications Fall 2008 Page 5
DATE TOPIC DUE THE NEXT CLASS FOLLOWING
Wednesday CHAPTER DISCUSSION
Typed Final Report Outline & Works Cited
DUE 11/26 - TODAY
Ch 14: (cont.) Employment Interviewing &
Nov 26 T Employment Package: Employment Ad, Typed
Cover Letter, Résumé, Reference List, &
Follow-Up Letter DUE 12/3
Dec 3 Oral Presentations of Business Report
Dec 10 Oral Presentations of Business Report
Dec 17 FINAL EXAM: Ch 1-14
1. Please type all assignments and include name, date, & assignment chapter number on all papers.
2. Homework assignments are due the next class following chapter discussion unless otherwise indicated.
Late assignments will receive a 10 percent points deduction.
3. Homework assignments should be typed, brief, formatted, professional, and, of course, grammatically
correct with no spelling errors. Be proud of your work!
4. Occasional in-class activities/assignments may be unannounced and may not be made up.
5. InfoTrac may be designated in your textbook for certain homework assignments; however, other
Internet search engines may also be used.
6. Special DUE DATES:
a. Sept 17 Report Topic
b. Nov 12 Report Outline (see format pg 349)
c. Nov 26 25 pts. - Final Report Outline & Works Cited (see format pg 300)
d. Dec 3 50 pts. - Employment Package
i. Employment Ad (see job search pg 380-382)
ii. Typed Cover Letter (see format pg 405)
iii. Résumé (see samples pg 390-394)
iv. Reference List (see format pg 389)
v. Follow-up Thank You Letter (see format pg 437)
e. Dec 3 or 10 50 pts. - Oral Presentation of Report
BUS 1104 Business Communications Fall 2008 Page 6