Crafting Scientific Documents and Creating Effective Presentations (#1013)

Register Now

CEUs: 0.35
Level: Introductory



Can you present technical and scientific information to a nontechnical/nonscientific group effectively? Do you feel your message is “lost” when sharing content at meetings or in an abstract or report? Do you know how to adapt the content for a report to a project manager and a client?

This interactive online course will include a mix of lecture, reading, writing exercises, and knowledge checks to promote active learning and illustrate key concepts. The final assessment will ask you to demonstrate all that you’ve learned in a PowerPoint® presentation.

Additional information

Learning objectives

This course will help you to:

  • Identify the essential characteristics of successful writing and develop strategies to incorporate those features in your work
  • Assess readers’ needs and background to develop documents at the right technical level for the target audience
  • Understand features of and apply conventions to different document types, e.g., managerial, reporting, regulatory, scholarly
  • Develop a constructive process for drafting, revising, and overcoming writing blocks
  • Master issues of proper style and grammar
  • Enhance the visual elements of your documents
  • Appreciate the importance of effective writing in business, research, and industry.

Who will benefit from taking this course?

Anyone who needs to write well and make scientific presentations for their professional success, including but not limited to:

  • Groundwater scientists and engineers
  • Environmental and research scientists
  • Research project managers
  • Public health officials
  • Regulators in any sector
  • Public officials
  • Earth and environmental science students.
Course outline

Lesson 1: The Rhetorical Situation and Genre in Technical Writing


  1. The Three Elements of the Rhetorical Situation
  2. The Rhetorical Situation
  3. Genre and the Rhetorical Situation
  4. Genre: Exercises and Readings

Learning objective: After completing Lesson 1, you will understand the role of rhetorical situation and genre when approaching a communication task.

Lesson 2: Style and Document Design in Technical Writing


  1. Style in Prose
  2. Introduction of Six Points of Style
  3. Style Principles and Writing Exercises
  4. Document Design

Learning objective: After completing Lesson 2, you will be able to apply style techniques to improve the quality and clarity of your writing.

Lesson 3: Crafting Effective Tables, Figures, and PowerPoint Presentations


  1. Readings
  2. Writing Exercises
  3. Using Tables and Figures

Learning objective: After completing Lesson 3, you will understand the core principles of visual rhetoric, and be able to analyze and produce data-rich tables, figures, and slides.

Lesson 4: Crafting Effective Tables, Figures, and PowerPoint Presentations

Synthesis Exam

Learning objective: After completing Lesson 4, you will synthesize and apply Lessons 1-3 by creating a brief PowerPoint presentation geared to a specific rhetorical situation.

Taking an NGWA online course

Immediately after completing your registration for this NGWA Online Training Center course, you can access it one of two ways.

  1. Click the link included on your order confirmation that will be emailed to the address on record.
  2. Click the “My Account” button on, log in with your email and password, click on “My Registrations” on the menu bar to the left, and then click on the link just below the title of the course you’ve purchased.

Visit the NGWA Online Training Center course FAQs page for more information. Please note the course must be completed within 30 days of registration and can only be taken once. Any resources must be downloaded within the 30 days you are a student. (All sales are final.)

Need help? Click here for video instructions on accessing online courses.

  • NGWA member price — $129
  • Nonmember price — $179