Technical Writing


As a federal agency, we know that virtually every document we produce is for the public to read. As a result, we need to make sure those documents are clear. In fact, there is an actual Public Law (111-274) requires that every agency of the federal government “use plain writing” in any document that communicates information to the public. To that end, the technical writer can take engineer-speak and translate it into language the public can easily understand.

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The Buffalo District technical writing services are available not only for other USACE districts, but for any federal agency that wants to produce documents that are clean, clear, and concise.

Interesting Fact - Engineers tend to write at the 35th reading grade level, which is much higher than the average person’s reading level in the United States. The technical writer can apply some tricks of the trade to reduce the reading grade level of your writing to a more manageable level for the public—without making the document sound like it has been “dumbed down.

Aspects that the Buffalo District technical writer can review and edit include:

  • Punctuation
  • Wordiness
  • Organization
  • Consistency
  • Grammar
  • Pronouns
  • Active Voice
  • Acronym/Abbreviations
  • Letter/Memo Format
  • Proofreading
  • Reading Grade Level
  • On-Call Sounding Board

When providing services for other USACE districts, the Buffalo District technical writer will ensure that USACE-produced reports meet not just the substantive and format requirements of other agencies, but the U.S. Army style criteria. The technical writer uses a regulations of the U.S. Army, other federal agencies, and a variety of style guides (AP, Gregg) to ensure the text of all our documents is consistent.

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