EDTECH 551 Syllabus

Syllabus – Fall 2013

EDTECH 551: Technical and Grant Writing

INSTRUCTOR: Dr. Cathy Morton                                                        PHONE: 806-792-0540 (central standard time)                           EMAIL :  cathymorton@boisestate.edu


Technical and Grant Writing will guide students in analyzing and improving their writing styles for printed texts, as well as adjusting their styles to online writing standards. With technical writing as a foundation, developing a grant proposal will be the primary focus in the course.  Students will design a technology project appropriate for their current or future careers and then develop a grant proposal to seek funding for their project.  Writing and editing print documents (and modifying them for posting online) will also be a significant focus in the course.  Both require:

  • determining users’ needs;
  • planning and organizing information;
  • writing effective documents;
  • using graphics; and
  • evaluating, editing and revising completed projects.


(Numbers in parentheses refer to standards for accreditation.)

1. Students will demonstrate an appreciation for and ability to recognize and produce good writing and design, recognizing technical writing as a craft and viewing themselves as professionals who take pride in their craft. (2.1, 2.2)

2. Each student will develop a fundable technology-related project and secure needed data and background information for the project, and then design a proposal to help fund the project. This work would include identifying appropriate technologies for learning situations, identifying needs, writing goals and objectives for the project, using a planning process to develop and implement the project, preparing and justifying a budget to support the project, and developing formative and summative evaluation strategies. (3.1.1, 4.0.2, 4.2.3, 4.4.2, 5.3.1)

3. Each student will demonstrate the skills and knowledge required to prepare printed and online documents, including the key steps in the process: identifying audience needs, planning, developing, organizing, drafting, revising, and graphically enhancing online documentation (2.1, 2.2)

4. Each student will be able to apply the skills of revision, editing, proofreading, and verifying information to the process of developing printed and online documents. (2.1, 2.2)

5. Each student will recognize and apply the principles that differentiate writing for documentation from writing for print. (2.3)

6. Each student will recognize and apply the principles of global communication, including nonsexist language, unbiased language, and a multicultural perspective. In all work submitted, the student will adhere to copyright and fair use guidelines. (3.4.2, 3.4.3)


All resources are available on the web and/or in the course resource file, including:

APA Style Tips, www.apastyle.org/styletips.html  Please note APA Style is expected.  This is a writing intensive class and the grading matrix incorporates APA Style guidelines.

Levels of Edit:  http://www.technical-expressions.com/learn2edit/levels-of-edit/levels_of_edit.pdf

Moursund, D.G. (2002) Obtaining resources for technology in education, available on the web at http://darkwing.uoregon.edu/~moursund/Books/GrantWriting/index.htm.


This is an online course hosted on the EDTECH Moodle site at: http://blackboard.boisestate.eduhttp://edtech.mrooms.org/

Firefox is the recommended browser for Moodle: http://www.mozilla.com

Logging in to Moodle:

GRADING – Total of 1000 Points

         Assignments: 100 points x 7 = 700

Final project = 100 points

Grading Scale:

781 – 800 A+                  741 – 780 A           721 – 740 A-
701 – 720 B+                  661 – 700 B           641 – 660 B-
621 – 640 C+                 581 – 620 C          541 – 580 C-

Value of each Module:  Each of the seven Modules will have a total value of 100 points (90 for the written portion and 10 for the forum).  The final will have a total value of 100 points (Note:  the final is revision and correction of Modules 5, 6 and 7 and is not new work.)

Discussion Forum: The discussion forum is critical to the development of assignments.  Each forum assignment has a value of ten (10) points. Failure to participate in a discussion forum will also negatively affect the grade for the corresponding assignment.  Forum posts should be made during the first week of each Module time period to allow for feedback.  Students will not receive credit for initial forum posts made on the day a written assignment is due.

The first four modules will be graded based upon your response to the assignment.  I will, however, edit extensively as a teaching tool for good technical editing! Modules 5, 6 and 7 will be graded not only on content but also on attention to grammar, spelling, editing and technical writing concepts addressed in the first four modules.  Rubrics will be posted.

ASSIGNMENTS (Including due dates and late work)

Assignments are submitted online through Moodle (and occasionally via email).  Information posted in Moodle will explain how and where to submit assignments. All assignments are graded together as a group to maintain a higher level of consistency. Grading begins on the first day after a due date and is completed before the next due date. You may track your progress through the Grades area in Moodle. Announcements will be posted when assignments have been graded.

Written Assignments:  Specific instructions will be provided for each written assignment.  All written assignments should be submitted with the name of the student and the module number on the first page.  This is a must!  Failure to put names and module numbers on assignments will result in a deduction of five points for the assignment.  All assignments are to be double spaced in type no smaller than 10 point in a Word format. Do not post assignments as pdf documents.

Written assignments are to be posted in the assignment area online. If you have difficulty posting, email the completed assignment to cathymorton@boisestate.edu

Students may submit a first draft of written assignments for Modules 5, 6, 7 and the Final for review no later than 5:00 PM Mountain Time on the Thursday before the due date.  The instructor will review drafts and return them with general notes and comments no later than 5:00 PM Mountain Time on the Saturday before the due date.  Do not ask the instructor to review drafts after Thursday before an assignment is due!

Communication:  The instructor will respond to emails and/or phone calls in a timely manner, usually within 24 hours on weekdays.  If you email after 4:00 Mountain Time on a Friday, do not expect a response until Monday noon Mountain Time.  The instructor will communicate with you through your BSU BroncoMail account so be sure to check your email often.

Due Dates: Please note that all assignment due dates fall on Tuesdays. Assignments must be submitted by midnight Mountain time on scheduled due dates. For time zone information please visit the World Clock Web site: http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/

Technical Difficulties:  On occasion, you may experience technical problems such as unavailability of Moodle or class files, Internet service outage, system maintenance, and/or other computer related problems. Do make the instructor aware if a technical problem prevents you from completing coursework. If a problem occurs on our end, such as Moodle or server failure, then an automatic due date extension is granted.

Point Deduction for Late Work: Five points are deducted for each day an assignment is late. For example, an assignment that is two days late will lose 10 points as a late penalty.

Emergency Pass: If you have a major event such as a death in the family, illness, hospitalization, or you are out of town without Internet, you may turn in one assignment under the emergency pass. This assignment may be up to one week late and still qualify for full credit. After the one-week extension has passed five points per day will be deducted until the assignment is no longer worth any credit.

Student Responsibility with Late Work: If you will be late for any reason please e-mail the instructor at cathymorton@boisestate.edu on or before the scheduled due date. When the assignment is completed you must send a follow-up e-mail to let the instructor know it is ready to grade. This is how we calculate the number of days for the late work penalty. Failure to notify the instructor could lead to a grade of zero.

Please Avoid End of Course Late Work: Please note that we work under University deadlines for submitting grades at the end of the semester. If you have an assignment that is late at the end of the semester there is a chance that it might not be in on time to make the University grade submission deadline. In this situation, the instructor has no choice but to grade whatever has been submitted at that time and submit grades regardless of the late policy above. Please try to avoid this situation.

Plan Your Time: It is a good idea to schedule specific times to work on your assignments each week and keep the appointment with yourself. During the fall and spring semesters a three credit graduate course requires about 9 to 12 hours per week of work. It is in your best interest to start early on each assignment to give yourself time to fix technical problems or get help before the due date passes.


Reasonable Accommodations: Any student who feels s/he may need accommodations based on the impact of a disability should contact the instructor privately to discuss specific needs. You will also need to contact the Disability Resource Center at 208-426-1583 (located in the Administration Building, room 114 on the Boise State campus) to meet with a specialist and coordinate reasonable accommodations for any documented disability.  The instructor must receive notice from the Disability Resource Center to make accommodations.

Academic Honesty: It is expected that students in this class will create original works for each assignment. We will follow the BSU Student Code of Conduct and also observe U.S. copyright laws in this course.

Please adhere to the following guidelines:

  • Please do your own original work for each project. Projects that were created for other classes may not be submitted for credit in this course. Each project may only be submitted for credit one time by the person who created it. The BSU Student Code of Conduct states: “Academic dishonesty also includes submitting substantial portions of the same academic course work to more than one course for credit without prior permission of the instructor(s).”
  • All projects and other assignments should contain original text that is written by the student who is submitting it. The exception to this is the use of small amounts of quoted material that is properly cited. Copying and pasting from other sites or projects (including instructor examples) is not permitted.
  • Images or other media used in projects should be original, used with permission of the owner, come from the public domain, or have a Creative Commons License permitting derivative work with proper attribution given. Please check terms of use on sites containing these items. If in doubt, don’t use it.
  • Please cite the source for materials that are obtained for your projects unless they are created by you. If permission is granted for use of copyrighted materials please post a statement explaining that near those materials.

In the event of academic dishonesty a complaint is filed with the BSU Student Conduct Office with supporting documentation. This complaint remains on file and actions may be taken against the student (e.g., loss or credit, grade reduction, expulsion, etc.).


                  Module        Begin Due Date     Topic

Module 1     Aug 26                 Sep 3          Intro to the Course & to Technical Writing

Module 2     Sep 4          Sep 17                 Technical Writing

Module 3     Sep 18                 Oct 1          Editing

Module 4     Oct 2           Oct 15                  Types of Grants & Researching Grant Options

Module 5     Oct 16                  Oct 29                  Needs Assessments and Documentation

Module 6     Oct 30                  Nov 19                  Goals, Objectives and Narrative

Note this is a three-week Module

Module 7     Nov 20                  Dec 3          Budget and Evaluation

Note this Module spans the Thanksgiving Break, the week of Nov 25-29.

Final Project Due:            Dec 13                  Final:  Completed Grant Application

Note:  The Final Project will be revisions and any additions/deletions to written assignments in Modules 5, 6 and 7.  Graded assignments will be returned no later than the Sunday following the due date.  Students are encouraged to do the revisions and additions/deletions as soon as graded modules are returned.  In that way, the Final Project can be substantially ready to submit by the first of May.

Please refer to the BSU Academic Calendar for University dates and deadlines: http://registrar.boisestate.edu/academic-calendar.shtml

The instructor reserves the right to modify this syllabus. Students will be notified via email of any modification.


The Department of Educational Technology supports the study and practice of facilitating and improving learning of a diverse population by creating, using, and managing appropriate technological processes and resources. Believing technology is a tool that enhances and expands the educational environment, we promote the use of current and emergent technologies for teaching and learning in a dynamic global society. Educational technologists are leaders and innovators, serving in institutions of higher education, public or private school settings, federal, state or local educational agencies, community organizations, and the private sector.


Boise State University strives to develop knowledgeable educators who integrate complex roles and dispositions in the service of diverse communities of learners. Believing that all children, adolescents, and adults can learn, educators dedicate themselves to supporting that learning. Using effective approaches that promote high levels of student achievement, educators create environments that prepare learners to be citizens who contribute to a complex world. Educators serve learners as reflective practitioners, scholars and artists, problem solvers, and partners.

This course contributes to the College of Education Conceptual Framework by emphasizing the following dispositions:

  • developing support for learning through designing technology projects and supporting their implementation through grant proposals and websites;
  • enhancing educators’ knowledge of preparing effective written communication and online documents
  • working collaboratively and valuing planning as a collegial activity;
  • using modern technologies appropriately;
  • continuing professional development, staying current with professional best practices;
  • contributing to the continuous improvement of schools.



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