Get Published

Dear Students,

Yes, U 2 must strive to get published.

Here is a great opportunity.

–Dr. Hirst


470 Students: Required Event! All others: Recommended Event.

Dear 470 Students,

Unless you absolutely can’t come to the event below: be there!

All other students: I highly recommend this Baker Center event —

NOTE: this event fills up quickly; arrive at Howard Baker Center by 4:10 to make sure you get a seat!

James Knight--Sept 26 (3)

Ashe Lecture with US Ambassador James Knight

On Central Africa and International Terrorism

Sept. 27, 2017, 4:30 to 5:30 pm

Baker Center, in the Toyota Auditorium.

Ambassador James Knight will give an Ashe lecture titled “Central Africa and International Terrorism” on Tuesday, September 26 from 4:30 to 5:30 pm.  Mr. Knight is the former United States Ambassador to Chad and career member of the Senior Foreign Service.  Before being the US Ambassador to Chad, he served as an ambassador to Benin from 2009 to 2012 and acted as an economic development specialist for the U.S. Agency for International Development in Niger.

The Ashe Lecture Series is part of The Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy’s Leadership and Governance program.  The series was established with a gift from former Knoxville mayor and US Ambassador to Poland, Victor Ashe.  For the series, ambassadors and mayors are invited to speak on a variety of public policy matters, including foreign relations, diplomacy, world affairs, and local government.  Through their experience, they are able to reveal nuances and intrinsic information regarding topics which fulfill the Center’s educational mission.

Please join us in The Baker Center’s Toyota Auditorium to learn about the impact of international terrorism on the nations of Central Africa.

Note to 470 students

Dear Global Communication students,

A note about our course schedule: remember to check it for updates from time to time.  You won’t get a “push” notice unless I actually send you a new post, as I’m doing right now.

So for example: it would be important for you to see the schedule update I just made, because before next class period you’ll want to spend time clicking the links I’ve provided, reading this and that at the web sites indicated, and pondering the universe.  Here’s the update relevant to next class meeting, August 29:

Checklist from Center for Plain Language

Dear all students (both in English 360 and 460),

The Center for Plain Language and I have the same checklist.  Make it yours as well.

Plain Language: Keys to Success

What is plain language?

When you write in plain language, readers can understand what you write the first time they read it.

When you write in plain language, readers can find what they need, understand what they find, and act appropriately on that understanding, in the time and effort they are willing to spend.

Can legal and technical information be in plain language?

Yes. When you write in plain language, you are more likely to be accurate, precise, sufficient, and unambiguous. Plain language is especially important in legal and scientific documents to ensure they are both technically precise and legally sufficient while also being as clear as possible for the intended audience.

How can I be sure I am writing in plain language?

Use this Plain Language checklist to be sure you’ve used good techniques:


Does document meet the readers’ needs?

☐ Do I have a clear idea of who will read this document?

☐ Does the format match the readers’ needs?

☐ Does the content meet the readers’ needs?

☐ Does it answer the readers’ questions in the order they will ask them?

☐ Does it include only what the reader needs to know, omitting unneccessary information?


Is the message clear?

☐ Is the main message up front?

☐ Will the message be clear to my readers?

☐ Have I logically arranged each section?

☐ Is the document an appropriate length?

☐ Will my reader know what to do with the information?


Are the paragraphs effective?

☐ Do the paragraphs begin with the main idea?

☐ Are the paragraphs the right length?


Are the sentences effective?

☐ Are any sentences too long or too short?

☐ Have I used active voice most of the time?

☐ Have I used concise, well-constructed sentences?

☐ Have I kept the subject, verb, and object together?

☐ Have I used action verbs instead of nouns made out of verbs?

☐ Have I used a conversational tone and the reader’s words?

☐ Have I defined words when necessary?


Are the words effective?

☐ Does the word choice match the readers’ needs and skills?

☐ Did I use concrete and familiar words?

☐ Did I avoid jargon and other unclear words, such as concept and value words?

☐ Did I use pronouns to speak to the reader?

☐ Did I eliminate extra words and unnecessary information?

☐ Did I define all acronyms?


Have I used headings effectively?

☐ Does each page have at least one heading?

☐ Do the headings clearly describe the information that follows?

☐ Do the headings cover all the ideas in their section?

☐ Is the heading format consistent throughout the document?

☐ Are the headings close to the information that follows, so they don’t “float?”


Did I use lists and tables?

☐ Can I turn any information into a bulleted list?

☐ Did I consistently punctuate my lists?

☐ Do all the items in the list follow logically from the list introduction?

☐ Can I turn any information into an “if…then” table?


Have I checked the spelling and grammar?

☐ Have I checked the spelling with more than Spellcheck?

☐ Have I checked to be sure it’s all grammatically correct?

☐ Have I checked the punctuation?


Does it look easy to read?

☐ Have I used enough white space to make it look uncluttered and inviting?

☐ Have I used effective emphasis techniques – such as bold and colors NOT ALL CAPS?

☐ Have I added graphics where they will illustrate the message?

☐ Is the font at least 11 points?

☐ Is the text both upper and lower case?

☐ Is there enough contrast between font color and background color?