English 461: Professional Writing

Encyclopedia Article Assignment

Dr. Tina L. Hanlon
Ferrum College

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Guidelines for Writing Encyclopedia Articles

Links to sample biographies: Index at this link

from Dr. Whited's past class: http://www.ferrum.edu/lwhited/eng461/bios.htm

Jodie Foster by Dr. Grimes, edited by Mr. Horn.     Samples by Mr. Horn.

Samples by Dr. Hanlon. Use my samples for content and bibliography and giving a blurb on the writer, but your format does not have to be like mine.

Required parts of encyclopedia articles:

Topics for encyclopedia articles:

You can choose any fairly famous person you want, someone related to your major or an interest of yours. But if you are interested in writing something that I might select to stay on my professional web pages (which you could then put on your resume), here are some suggestions.

Format Guidelines for Creating a Web Page from a Word File:

Tables and Graphics

Preview and Send

Thursday, February 12

Discussion of research in library with Mr. Loveland

Tuesday, February 17

MEET IN LIBRARY COMPUTER LAB for computer workshop (creating web page, using graphics in Word).

Bring your thoughts or notes on two biographical sources you have found so far for your encyclopedia article. Be prepared to discuss how these two sources compare. See guidelines above on this assignment.

Wednesday, Feb. 18, 3-4 p.m. in Britt 106

Meeting with Mr. Jeff Horn, professional writer for encyclopedias and other reference works. Read the writing sample you receive by e-mail in preparation for the class with Mr. Horn, and be ready to talk about the topic of your own encyclopedia article by then.

Postponed until next Tuesday: Mr. Horn said to "provide the students with copies of the World Almanac capsule bios of presidential candidates that I worked on for 2004. An assignment might be to suggest three (or five) additional categories of information the Almanac MIGHT have included for each candidate, and where we might have tried to find such information. The subject should be timely—we'll still be in primary season." So this is what you should do: read these bios in the attachment and and be prepared to talk about other categories of information he could have included, and ask him questions, of course, about this type of writing for reference books.

Thursday, February 19

No class today. If you miss either of this week's classes, be sure you have made arrangements to make up that work.

Tuesday, February 24

Bring draft of your biography, printed out, to class.

Thursday, February 26

Web pages with encyclopedia article due (see instructions above)

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