Planning and Writing Proposals by pvj16859


									 Planning and
Writing Proposals
Prof. Stephen A. Bernhardt

    Dept of English
 University of Delaware

      September 2006
Writing and Science
Thinking, planning, coordinating,
proposing, tracking, running,
        ScienceScience     Writing
recording, reporting, concluding

Types of Documents
   Plans to govern work
   Memos and letters to
    keep work flowing
   Proposals to describe
    and persuade
   Presentations to
   Reports to detail,
    analyze, and interpret
    Plan example
Planning document
   What are you trying to do?
    Purpose, goals, deliverables
   Who will use the document?
    Your team, your manager, your
   What is the best approach?
    Detail on tasks, roles, & deadlines
   How should it be designed?
    Graphic, organized, explicit
Planning document
 Project overview
 Team and contact info
 Goals and deliverables
 Tasks, milestones, critical path
 Team rules
 Schedule, time allocation
 Budget
Why plan?
 Teams with shared visions (in
  writing) work better.
 Teams need rules and schedules
  (and wiggle room).
 Teamwork demands complex
  resource planning.
Nutshell the Proposal
   What is your purpose?
   Who is the audience?
   What is your plan?
   What will you deliver?
   When?
   By whom?
   With what resources?
   At what cost?
Proposal Quality
 Responsive to RFP—shared
 Clear need
 Quality of deliverables
 Credible expertise: ability to
 Realistic schedule and budget
Be Deductive and Explicit
 Purpose and scope up front
 Preview main messages and
 Lead sentences on sections and
  paragraphs—top line skim
 Plenty of navigation devices
 Emphasis on most important sell
Two Organizational Schemes

 Deductive       Inductive

 Main Point

                 Main Point
   Main messages, summary statements, or
    conclusions appear at the beginning of
    sections and paragraphs
   Document sections are organized
    deductively, from general to specific, from
    most important to least important
   Procedural steps are sequential
   Organizational devices are used to guide
    the reader
Elements of Design
 Effective formatting, layout,
  and design
 Headers and footers
 Page numbers
 Consistent use of styles
 White space for separation
  and emphasis
Front Matter
Orients the Reader
   Cover with title, date,
    sponsor, proposer
   Executive summary
    or abstract
   Table of contents for
   Summaries provide broad, descriptive
    coverage of development activities and
   Summaries attempt to show the whole and
    its parts.
   Summaries work at a coarse level of detail,
    at coarse grain, but are still completely
   Summaries should be visual: easy to
Body of Proposal
      Provides Main Elements
   Introduction and overview
   Statement of problem
   Proposed solution with objectives
   Methods and materials
   Work plan: milestones, deliverables,
   Schedule (high level graphic)
   Budget: costs and benefits

   Reviews the project context:
     Who requested the work?
     Why?

     For what outcome or benefit?

   Overviews the plan of this
Statement of Problem

 Provides clear and compelling
  description of the problem
 Defines the need
 Discusses any critical issues
  associated with the problem
 Details any constraints on the
  problem's solution
Proposed solution
 Identifies broad strategy or
  planned approaches
 Lists specific, measurable
  outcomes to be accomplished
 Ties objectives clearly to
Methods and materials
 Describes in detail what the
  team proposes to do to find a
  solution (action steps)
 Includes specifics—amounts,
  numbers, locations, tools,
  instruments, etc.
Work Plan (in proposal)
 Focuses on management of the
 Shows how the team will be
  coordinated, scheduled, and
 Commits to dates (aggressive or
  realistic or both)
 Works at high level for client
 Presented in visual format
 Places all activities on a timeline
 Highlights critical or key
 Convinces audience that the
  timeline is realistic
 Serves as the proposal
  “at a glance”
 Presented in visual format
 Provides rationale and
  commentary (budget narrative)
 Forecasts/determines costs for
  staff, materials, support, and
Back Matter/Appendices
  Bibliography or references
  Computer documentation

  Instrument descriptions or sources

  Full resumes

  Raw data to back up summary
   points made in the body of the
Writing Resources
   UD Writing Center (831-1168), basement of
    Memorial Hall
   Johnson-Sheehan, Richard. Writing
   Brusaw, Alred, and Oliu, Handbook of
    Technical Writing
   Diane Kukich (CEE) dkukich@UDel.Edu
   Steve Bernhardt

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