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Guided Self-StudyTM
In Effective Written Communication

Skills learned

As a result of taking this course, students will be able to:

  • Use a "building block" system to ensure efficient, effective communications
  • Save time by pinpointing the objective and focusing only on pertinent information
  • Organize information for clarity and interest
  • Create immediate attention and maintain it all the way to the closing
  • Gain the reader's good will by using the right language, style, and tone
  • Lead the reader to the desired action or reaction
  • Edit their own and others' writing with confidence

One course for all your needs

Guided by a personal consultant, students learn to produce the kinds of writing their jobs require:

  • Sales letters that get more appointments, strengthen relationships, and achieve more sales
  • Technical reports that provide essential information quickly and clearly for a diverse group of readers and focus on solutions, not problems
  • Audit reports that lead to improvements and are perceived as helpful, not judgmental
  • Customer service letters that maintain goodwill, present unwelcome news diplomatically, and speak naturally without a form-letter feel
  • Memos that inform concisely, request persuasively, and motivate readers to follow new policies and procedures through explanation, not edict
  • E-mail that is not just "thrown together," but focuses on an objective and presents a professional image

In short, our system works for all kinds of business writing--technical, financial, sales, administrative, customer service, and executive.

What makes our course different?

It's different from any other writing skills course because it is not dependent upon text, lecture, or classroom . . . but instead upon the interaction between the course participant and the evaluator (a highly skilled writer-analyst and member of our staff).

Instruction methods

Guided Self-StudyTM works the way writing itself does. It subjects the writing to reader interpretation.

Following the reading of each of the five units of text, the participant sends a job-related writing assignment (for example: a report, proposal, letter, or memo) to his or her evaluator-consultant. In addition to analyzing content for grammatical correctness, structure, sequence, and language selection, the evaluator acts as the reader and studies the assignment for clarity, effect on the reader, and how well it achieves its objectives.

Spending up to two hours on each assignment, analyzing and writing the critique, the evaluator sends to the participant a constructive commentary, reacting as the intended reader, and correcting and reorganizing where appropriate.

The relationship between participant and evaluator is writer to reader, client to consultant. The evaluation process continues through five units of instruction, and all that time the participant has a private consultant, commenting honestly and knowledgeably through the evaluations, but also guiding and motivating him or her toward improvement.

To make learning permanent, we include a Reinforcement Exercise and Objective Analysis series with each unit of text. The Reinforcement exercises strengthen understanding and application of principles presented in the text. The analysis series asks participants to analyze and comment on a piece of writing they are given. Our evaluator reviews their work and comments. By becoming good analysts of others' writing and applying these skills to their own writing, our participants become permanently good writers.

At the end, the evaluator produces a wrap-up evaluation measuring performance from pre-course to completion.

Course content

To enable participants to get a handle on writing, we provide them with a communication model, a system built on a foundation of six building blocks.

  • Unfolding (organization, clarity, relevance)
  • Envelopment (the "you" concept, focus on reader needs)
  • Tone (character, mood, attitude, structure)
  • Opening (direction, purpose, attention, interest)
  • Release (change of pace for impact)
  • Thrust (the call to action or reaction)

We provide to each participant:

  • An introductory letter of welcome explaining course procedures
  • A student profile so that the evaluator knows each participant's writing needs
  • Text divided into five units
  • A course schedule listing the dates assignments should be submitted to the evaluator
  • Three types of exercises for each of five instruction units:
    • Job-related writing assignments
    • Objective Analysis series to build analytical abilities
    • Reinforcement exercises to improve understanding
  • Final progress review to help chart the course for further improvement

The benefits

  • It's economical--costs much less than a public or in-house seminar.
  • Instruction is direct, confidential, and tailored to each person's development needs.
  • Participants, given their own private consultants, respond to this program with high motivation and performance.
  • The principles learned can be applied to all writing situations.
  • People who will not or cannot attend group sessions will appreciate the opportunity to develop their writing skills.

Participants comment . . .

"Because I was an English major in college, initially I felt you could teach me nothing. Boy, was I wrong. I hate to sound as if I am an employee of your company with all my praise, but I really feel that this is the best course I have had since college. I thank you."
Jerry Acuff
Division Manager - Hoechst-Roussel Pharmaceuticals

"Barbara was extremely helpful in changing my outlook on writing. She was very constructive in not only pointing out mistakes, but she also gave me ways to correct them. I couldn't praise her enough. She seemed to really care . . . She showed me writing wasn't as difficult as I thought it to be."
Lawrence Jensen
Associate Scientist - Hoffman-LaRoche

"I found the course to be very helpful with my career. Thank you for one of the most dynamic courses I will probably ever take."
Jeffery J. Heath
Assistant Division Manager - Lorillard

"I had reservations about a correspondence course, but I was proven wrong. The evaluations were precise, helpful, and detailed. I received plenty of praise also."
Linda M. O'Hara
Assistant District Loan Officer - Marine Midland Bank

"Rose can be critical and still be very tactful. She always gave a better example instead of saying that weak areas existed. I have already suggested to our training department that all six district managers in my region also be enrolled."
Harold Anderson
Regional Sales Manager - Carter Wallace

Continuing education credits

Effective Written Communication conforms to the guidelines established by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training and qualifies for 15 contact hours (1.5 CEUs). Credit for this course may be granted by many professional organizations or by national, state, or local licensing boards when you submit this course description and confirmation from us that you've completed the program. We recommend that you contact your own board or organization to verify its requirements.

LR has helped thousands improve their communication skills. We'll do the same for you.

Cost: $375 or less, depending on the number of students enrolled.

To enroll, call us (908-464-1231) or click below.

Fee schedule | To schedule seminar