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• Must use these effectively!
• They are a call to attention and action
• Many people scan/skim messages making headings
critical to comprehension and action
• What happens when you are given a message with
no headings and just paragraphs of text?
Types of headings
• Topical: Customer Service
• Statement: Customer Service and its Role in
• Question: What role does customer service play
Adequacy and Hierarchy
• Two important concepts related to headings
• Adequacy: Are there enough headings to see the
general idea/contents of the communication without
• Hierarchy: Is the structure of the document/message
clear based upon the hierarchical order of headings
(general to specific) indicated by size, indentation,
and font (important in long documents!)
• Use of visuals to convey information
• Graphs, charts, pictures, clipart
• So easy in a world where images are just a Google
• Can be as simple as a row of information in columns
• Do you know a serif font from a san serif?
• Which is better?
• Left, center or right
• Justified (hard to read but gives a document a
polished feel); Useful with narrow columns
• Everything should be lined up whatever you choose
• Spacing between paragraphs and headings helps
the reader scan and comprehend
• Appropriate white space is important!
• Fix the hideous memo on the course website
• Use HATS and make it readable to earn 3 extra
credit points! This is huge…can help if you are
missing an assignment or think your analytical
report won’t be so good…