WHAT IS TRANSACTIONAL WRITING?
Transactional writing is an umbrella term that covers many different nonfiction writing genres.
The purpose of each transactional writing text type is to communicate ideas and information to others.
The purpose of a text can be defined as:
- To persuade
Sometimes two or more of these purposes will be combined in a single text type.
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WHAT ARE THE TRANSACTIONAL TEXT TYPES?
Any nonfiction writing genre that sets out to persuade, argue, advise, or inform can be classified as a transactional text type. Generally, they can all be grouped loosely under one of the following types:
- Article (Read our in-depth guide to writing an article here )
- Letter (Read our in-depth guide to letter writing here )
- Review (Read our in-depth guide to writing a book review here )
Each of these genres (and subsequent sub-genres) will follow specific conventions of language and structure.
What We’ll Look at in this Article
In this article, we’ll look at each of these transactional text types in more detail, as well as some other text types that don’t sit comfortably in any of the five broad genres listed above.
We’ll provide you with all the tools required to help students confidently approach writing any piece of transactional writing.
We’ll examine what students need to consider before they even begin putting pen to paper, breaking down each transactional writing genre into the specific criteria of language and structure.
Finally, we’ll provide some tools, tips, and techniques students can use to polish their transactional writing and help them achieve their text’s purpose.
HOW TO GET READY TO WRITE A TRANSACTIONAL TEXT
As with any writing task, preparation is key. Luckily, there’s a helpful acronym we can learn to keep the essential elements of transactional writing preparation clear in our minds: GAPS
Before beginning to write, students should fill in the GAPS by answering the following questions prompted by each letter in this acronym.
Let’s take a look:
G enre – What type of text are you being asked to write? What are the features of that genre?
A udience – Who are you being asked to write for? Is it an individual or a group?
P urpose – What are you trying to achieve in the text? Persuade, argue, advise, or inform?
S tyle – Is the text formal or informal? Relaxed or serious in tone? Simple or complex?
Usually, these questions can be quickly answered by closely reading the question or writing prompt.
In instances where the students have a freer rein on what they write, they must ensure that they have answered these questions clearly before beginning the writing process.
Failing to answer these questions definitively before starting to write will all but ensure the writing will lack clarity of purpose.
TRANSACTIONAL WRITING GENRES AND THEIR CRITERIA
Once a student has determined which writing genre they are creating, they need to ensure they have a firm grasp on the features of that genre.
Below, we’ll briefly examine some of the main criteria of each of the most common transactional writing genres. There isn’t space to cover each genre in detail here, as that’d require a complete dedicated article.
Luckily though, you’ll find comprehensive (and wonderfully written) articles on each writing genre on this very site!
Let’s gain a brief overview of some of the main criteria of the most common transactional text types.
1. HOW TO WRITE AN ARTICLE
The term ‘article’ covers a lot of ground here. We can expect to find articles in magazines, newspapers, and websites. We can also consider many forms of essays, such as persuasive essays for example, as articles.
STRUCTURE OF AN ARTICLE:
Articles are usually long-form pieces of prose writing on a specific topic. They can be balanced in their outlook considering many points of view , or they can present a very subjective opinion on the topic being written about.
The subjects that articles can explore are almost inexhaustible. Anything you can form an opinion on could make for the subject of an article. Some common topics for articles include:
- Current affairs
Articles tend to follow a basic 3-part structure of introduction, body paragraphs, and conclusion.
The introduction tries to grab the reader’s attention and usually outlines the main point of the article.
A series of body paragraphs usually follows that provides more detail on each of the main points covered in the article.
A final concluding paragraph then brings it all together at the end.
LANGUAGE OF AN ARTICLE:
To decide on the type of language to be used in an article, the writer will need to have first identified the audience and purpose of the text.
Regardless of which language register is used, it should be suited to the background of the target reader in terms of complexity and word selection.
Words should also be chosen to ensure the purpose of the article is achieved. For example, where an article is intended to be persuasive, emotional language may be selected. Whereas in an academic article on a historical topic, detached language devoid of emotional color may be more appropriate.
- Heading and subheadings
- Attention grabber or ‘hook’
- Introduction answering who, what, when, where, why, and how?
- Body paragraphs
- May contain pictures with captions
2. HOW TO WRITE A LEAFLET
Standard leaflets are made by folding a sheet of paper to create 2, 3, or more panels. They are often colorful and are usually distributed for free to provide information mostly on goods or services.
STRUCTURE OF A LEAFLET:
In leaflets, the layout and organization of the text are especially important. Usually, they’re printed on folded pieces of paper and card which have implications for how the information in a leaflet is presented.
Leaflets vary widely according to their purpose and the audience they are aimed at. Usually, they will employ subheadings to great effect to guide the reader’s eye through the various sections of information.
Also, information is frequently organized using bullet points and numbers to make instructions, for example, easier to follow.
LANGUAGE OF A LEAFLET:
When leaflets provide instructions, they’ll often use imperatives and the personal pronoun ‘you’.
As always, the language used will be suited to the audience. Where the audience is wide and varied, say, for a tourist attraction, the language will be simple and straightforward to make the information in the leaflet accessible to the widest possible audience.
The tone is often enthusiastic and reassuring, to inspire confidence in the information it contains.
LEAFLET WRITING KEY POINTS
- Easy to read with heading and subheadings
- A colorful and bold presentation style
- Makes an offer of product or service (or provides information)
- Often uses persuasive language
- Use of bullet points
- Short, snappy sentences
- Uses pictures and photographs
- May contain details on directions, map, opening times, price, phone no., etc.
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3. LETTER WRITING
A letter is a written form of communication usually intended to be read by an individual or a small group of people. Only very rarely is it intended to be read by a large group of people, in which case it is usually referred to as an ‘open letter’.
While traditionally letters were written by hand on paper and delivered via the mail, today technology has given us many more options for personal communication including email, text messages, and various other forms of digital messaging.
STRUCTURE OF A LETTER:
Up until recently, letter writing was usually a fairly formal affair. There are standardized formulas for opening and closing letters which are still quite common. For example:
● If a letter opens with Dear Sir or Dear Madam (i.e. the name is unknown) it ends with Yours Faithfully
● If it opens with Dear Mr. Smith or Dear Mrs. Smith (i.e. the name is known) it ends Yours Sincerely .
And while these formal conventions can still apply, some types of text that we can group under the term ‘letter’ are much less formal in their style. Invitations and email are two prominent examples that employ a much looser approach to structure.
LANGUAGE OF A LETTER:
The language used in any type of letter will depend greatly on the audience it is intended for.
For example, while formal types of letters, such as a cover letter as part of a job application, will have a very professional tone, an invitation to a birthday party will likely have a warm and friendly tone.
Emails are used for a wide variety of purposes these days, and even though they can still be used in some more formal type contexts, in general, they are much more conversational in tone than letters.
LETTER WRITING KEY POINTS:
- For formal letters, your address and the date in the top right corner and the recipient’s address to the left
- Opens with an appropriate greeting (e.g. Dear Sir/Madam, Dear Mr X / Ms X, Hi, etc)
- Main body paragraphs.
- Ends with appropriate closing (e.g. Yours Faithfully, Yours Sincerely, Take Care, etc)
4. HOW TO WRITE A REVIEW
Traditionally, when we think of reviews many of us think of book and movie reviews. There are, of course, many other types of reviews to consider.
These days people read and write reviews on almost any product or service, from hotels to restaurants. For example, we might read a review of a theater show before deciding whether to go or a computer game before deciding on buying it.
STRUCTURE OF A REVIEW:
Usually, a review will open with a statement about what is being reviewed before summing up the writer’s opinion. The remainder of the review will be dedicated to explaining why the writer arrived at the conclusion they arrived at with, of course, close reference to the thing being reviewed.
LANGUAGE OF A REVIEW:
When the review is positive, the writer will opt for more positive language, making for a more upbeat experience for the reader. The reverse is true for negative reviews.
The tone of a review will be particularly obvious in the choice of adjectives chosen by the writer.
As the review is subtly trying to influence the reader’s perception of the thing reviewed, it’s important that the reader trusts the writer and this can be achieved by the writer building rapport with the reader.
One effective way to achieve this is through the use of humor, though whether or not this is appropriate will depend particularly on the specific purpose of the review and the nature of the intended audience.
KEY POINTS OF WRITING A REVIEW
- States what is being reviewed (book, movie, article, etc)
- Overview of material
- Body paragraphs explore positives and negatives
- The conclusion summarizes and expresses an opinion
- Provides either a negative critique or a positive recommendation.
5: HOW TO WRITE A SPEECH
Speeches are made to do one of 4 things: to inform, to instruct, to persuade, or to entertain. They are made on all sorts of formal and informal occasions ranging from political campaign speeches to birthday party toasts.
STRUCTURE OF A SPEECH:
Speeches most often follow a simple 3-part structure:
- An engaging and motivating opening
- Strong, well-structured arguments
- A powerful and memorable conclusion
LANGUAGE OF A SPEECH:
A speech should deliver arguments with clarity and consistency. The speaker must be engaging and able to connect with the audience on an emotional level.
So as not to alienate the audience, it is necessary to choose language in tune with the make-up of the audience.
The purpose of many speeches is persuasion and so persuasive devices should be used such as rhetorical questions, objection handling, and emotive language.
KEY POINTS OF SPEECH WRITING
- Opens with a welcoming statement or greeting (Ladies and gentlemen, Dearly beloved, Teachers and classmates, etc)
- Outlines what speech will be about (Today, I will speak to you about…)
- Body of speech makes 3 or 4 points and expands upon each point
- Arguments handle objections
- Conclusion summarizing main points
- Possible call to action at the end
- Thank the audience.
OTHER TRANSACTIONAL TEXTS TO CONSIDER
Again, the criteria above are far from exhaustive and each genre is worth studying in detail before writing – the articles on this site are a great place to start.
Remember too, the features above are general and each genre has a host of subtypes that have their own specific requirements that may not be listed in the bullet points above.
Also, while the genre of writing will inform the style and tone of the text, a lot depends on the purpose and the audience. This will be decided by the student in the preparation phase by answering the GAPS questions listed earlier in this article.
Now, students understand how to prepare to write, how to structure their writing, and which language register to use, it’s time to make sure they possess the necessary skills to get the work done.
WHAT KEY SKILLS ARE NEEDED TO WRITE A TRANSACTIONAL TEXT?
Well, as discussed already, transactional writing texts cover a wide range of genres, serving many purposes, and are directed toward a variety of audiences.
Therefore, the list of techniques and skills described below will not apply in every single transactional text a student writes.
Once the student has mastered each of the skills and techniques below, they will need to apply their understanding of each writing context to decide which is best suited to their current needs.
The acronym AFOREST will help students to remember the specific writing techniques.
Let’s take a look at each in turn:
A – ALLITERATION & APPEAL
Alliteration refers to the repetition of an initial consonant sound in a series of words. Tongue twisters are an easy way to illustrate the concept, e.g.,
P eter P iper p icked a p eck of p ickled p epper.
We often see alliteration used in texts that employ headlines as the technique helps grab attention and engage the reader. It can also, of course, be used within the body of the text to help draw attention to a concept or idea.
Appeal is a reminder to consider the audience the text is intended to appeal to, as this will greatly affect the tone of the writing.
It will also inform the pronouns the writer chooses to use in their text.
For example, in a speech where the writer is directly addressing their audience, they may frequently use personal pronouns directly addressing the audience such as you and we .
Instead of… “Action must be taken to prevent this.”
The student writes… “We must take action to prevent this.”
F – FACTS
Facts are an important tool of persuasion and can come in many forms. Essentially, facts refer to any verifiably true statement. Statistics are one convincing tool of persuasion to support factual statements.
Whatever guise facts come in, they can be used to inform or entertain as well as persuade the reader.
O – OPINION
Opinion refers to the sharing of a personal point of view. Opinions bring life to a piece of writing.
While it may not be appropriate to express a personal opinion in some contexts, many types of transactional text would be incomplete without the inclusion of the writer’s opinion. For example, a persuasive essay or a movie review.
Often, a text will open with an assertion of the writer’s opinion with the rest of the piece focused on supporting that opinion to persuade the reader to share the writer’s point of view.
The difference between a statement of fact and one of opinion is illustrated in the following two sentences:
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is a very popular combat sport. (Fact)
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu is the greatest of all combat sports. (Opinion)
R – REPETITION & RHETORICAL QUESTIONS
Repetition repeating certain words or phrases in a text is an effective means of highlighting a message or an idea, as well as reinforcing it in the mind of the reader. Repetition can be used to not only to bring rhythm and a certain poetry to a text, but it can bring clarity too.
“Mankind must put an end to war – or war will put an end to mankind.”
— John F. Kennedy
Rhetorical Questions are questions that are asked, but no answer is expected. Usually, the answer will be either implied or obvious to the audience. They are frequently used in speeches and persuasive texts such as advertisements.
“Why pay more?”
Rhetorical questions are asked for the effect they create, rather than any attempt to elicit an answer. They can be a very persuasive tool to have in any writer’s arsenal.
E – Emotive Language & Exaggeration
Emotive Language is a powerful tool of persuasion. Emotive language in a text can be used to incite strong feelings in the reader.
Whether these feelings are feelings of joy, sorrow, disgust, or desire, writers often use this type of language to evoke a desired reaction in the reader and incite them to take a particular course of action.
Emotive language is commonly understood in contrast to objective, factual writing. This type of language makes a contention or argument, but in a way, that appeals to the reader’s feelings.
For example, if the writer is arguing that there should be no restrictions on business opening hours, they might write the following:
“Forcing businesses to close will steal money from the pockets of our poorest workers. It will steal bread from the hungry mouths of our children.”
Exaggeration is sometimes known as hyperbole and in this context refers to the making of intentionally over-the-top statements to intensify the impact of an argument.
Instead of saying school closures will create problems for students, parents, and teachers alike, we might make a statement like:
“School closures will be the end of the world!”
S – Statistics
Statistics , along with percentages and other numbers, are used as supporting evidence for facts.
“The beginning of the week is an extremely stressful time for many people. So much so that the risk of a heart attack for adult men is about 20% greater on Mondays and 15% greater for adult women.”
T – The Rule of Threes
Three is the magic number. Our brains love patterns as they help us make meaning and help make that meaning memorable. We see it in practice in many common phrases.
“Cool, calm, collected”
“Blood, sweat and tears”
“Location, location, location”
While cliché should usually be avoided, students can come up with their own patterns following the rules of 3 to make their writing more memorable.
WRITING CHECKLIST & RUBRIC BUNDLE FOR ALL TEXT TYPES
When understood well, the above concepts, strategies, and techniques will ensure that student writers can confidently and competently produce a strong piece of transactional writing in any genre.
As their experience and abilities grow, students will quickly be able to recognize the purpose of any writing prompt and accurately assess their prospective audience to help fine-tune their language register.
Once they’ve selected the appropriate criteria, they’ll be able to choose suitable tools and techniques to produce a polished piece of writing that fulfils all intended objectives.
All that’s needed now is practice – and plenty of it!
OTHER GREAT ARTICLES RELATED TO TRANSACTIONAL WRITING
How to write a letter
How to write a text response
How to Write a Descriptive Text
How to Write a Compare and Contrast Essay
The content for this page has been written by Shane Mac Donnchaidh. A former principal of an international school and English university lecturer with 15 years of teaching and administration experience. Shane’s latest Book, The Complete Guide to Nonfiction Writing , can be found here. Editing and support for this article have been provided by the literacyideas team.
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Transactional Writing: Everything You Need To Know
This article contains information on everything you need to know about Transactional Writing.
Table of Contents
The aim of every form of writing is to pass a message. This is usually between the writer and the audience/ readers as the case maybe. Transactional writing is one form of writing that informs, persuades, and above all communicates. It is non-fiction writing that passes information between individuals or groups of people. It may include business letters, emails, speeches, invitations and interviews.
Each of these types of transactional writing have their unique styles and features in terms of structure as well as tone. For instance, the style of writing an article is quite different from that of a speech.
IMPORTANT THINGS TO CONSIDER BEFORE STARTING A TRANSACTIONAL WRITING
There are a lot of things to put into consideration before starting a transactional writing. They are as follows:
This has to do with the type of text you are being asked to write. For instance, is it a speech, an article, a letter, etc? What are the features of that genre?
Your ability to answer these questions will help you to make proper plans before you commence writing.
Your Intended Audience (Reader)
The first thing to consider in writing is the audience even if it is one person. The approach differs for different audiences.
The Purpose of Your Writing
The purpose of a transactional writing can be to inform, persuade, advise or argue.
Sometimes, a transactional writing can contain more of these purposes. Hence, knowing your audience and purpose will help you to know the particular style of writing to use.
For Instance, if it’s a letter to a friend, you will definitely know that your style of writing will take an informal format with a relaxed and friendly tone but this cannot be for a formal letter.
TRANSACTIONAL WRITING GENRES AND THEIR CRITERIA
As earlier stated, transactional writing can be in the form of an article, speech, letter, etc. Each of these genres has various criteria and styles in which they are written.
We will be giving a brief overview on how each of them is written. So, let’s get started.
HOW TO WRITE AN ARTICLE
Article is a broad form of transactional writing that can be found on websites, newspapers and magazines. It is a piece of writing about a given topic that may range from 800-2000 words or more. An article can be written for or against a particular subject matter and other times, it can be from a balanced standpoint. Regardless of the topic, articles are written on numerous subjects such as; Entertainment, Sport, News, Lifestyle, Travel, History, etc.
STRUCTURE OF AN ARTICLE
Irrespective of the length, the structure of articles is standardized. The basic structure of an article either for a website, newspaper or magazine is usually in three main parts which are:
- Heading and subheadings: Articles must have a heading and subheadings depending. The headline is usually catchy in a way that it grabs the attention of the readers and entices them to read the article till the very end.
- Opening/Introduction: Following the headline is an introduction or opening. This part of the article introduces the topic in a way that it also grabs the attention of whoever is reading. It engages the reader by outlining the main point of the article. It is from here that the reader is exposed to what the article is all about.
- Middle/ Body paragraphs: This part contains a series of paragraphs that provide more detail on each of the main points covered in the introductory part of the article.
- Conclusion: This segment is another opportunity to take your readers back to all that is contained in the article as it sums the points together. In other words, you could use a structure in which the conclusion connects back to the introduction. In many cases, readers go through the conclusion of articles to ascertain all that is contained in an article.
LANGUAGE OF AN ARTICLE
The choice of language used to write an article is dependent on the purpose of writing and audience.
Therefore, to decide on the type of language or tone to be used in an article, the writer will be required to first identify the audience and purpose of writing.
Identifying this will enable the writer to use words/ registers that are in line with the topic. For instance, where an article is meant to be persuasive, words/tone used should be able to arouse emotion.
In line with the language used, articles are usually written in Standard English with a mix of literary devices such as metaphor and simile, personification, alliteration, etc. They make your writing more engaging and interesting.
A letter is a form of text that is generally written to communicate to an individual most of the time and rarely to a group of people. This means that letters are basically written to an individual not a group of people but where the latter is the case, it is referred to as an open letter.
Before now, letters were written traditionally by hand and delivered through post offices in most cases. Recently, technology has given us many options for personal communication. Hence, messages can be sent through emails, text messages, chats via social media platforms, etc.
STRUCTURE OF A LETTER
A letter is structured mainly in two formats; the formal and informal structure. A formal letter has a conventional structure with the sender’s address on the top right hand corner while the recipient’s address is written on the left and slightly below it is the date.
Following the address includes the following:
- Greeting or salutation
- Body of letter
Like every formal letter, the greeting is always in a formal way. Therefore, you should address your letter to a specific person, using the salutation ‘
If you do not have a specific name to address, you will be required to use Sir/Madam. However, there are different ways to end a letter, depending on the method of salutation.
If you have named the recipient at the start, for Instance;
it means your letter should end with ‘Yours sincerely’ but in the case where you did not address the recipient by name, for instance;
your letter should end with ‘Yours faithfully’
After the salutation, the first paragraph of your letter is used to introduce yourself. Use the first one or two sentences of your letter to formally introduce yourself.
This paragraph usually outlines the overall aim of the letter, while the closing paragraph summarizes the main points. Informal letters equally have the same structure but differ in the tone and language used.
LANGUAGE OF A LETTER
The language used in any type of letter will depend solely on the audience.
For instance, while formal letters, such as a cover letter for a job application, will have a very professional and official tone, an invitation letter to a wedding party will have a friendly and informal tone.
Emails are used for a variety of purposes these days, and even though they can still be used in some more formal contexts, in general, they are more conversational in tone than letters.
HOW TO WRITE A REVIEW
Transactional writing as seen above is not limited to only letter writing and articles, reviews are also part of transactional texts. Usually, when the word review is mentioned, the first thing that comes to mind is the traditional book and movie reviews. There are many other types of reviews to consider. These days, reviews have gone beyond book and movie reviews down to reviews of products and services.
People however, make use of reviews to make informed decisions before going ahead to patronize entrepreneurs and Institutions such hotels, restaurants, vendors, etc.
STRUCTURE OF A REVIEW :
Not everyone knows how to write a review.
Usually, a review begins with an introduction of the thing being reviewed before the writer’s opinion in summary. Following this, is a detailed explanation as to why the writer has a given opinion which is backed up by references and is usually highlighted in the review.
LANGUAGE OF A REVIEW
The language or tone used depends on the type of review. A review can be positive or negative. For a positive review, the writer usually goes for positive language and vice versa. The aim is to engage better with the reader.
The goal of writing a review is to subtly influence the perception of the reader with respect to what is being reviewed and this can be achieved by either the choice of adjectives used when writing.
In all, a review can either be for negative purposes or for positive reasons to criticize and recommend respectively.
HOW TO WRITE A SPEECH
This is one of the most technical forms of transactional writing. It is written for all types of events ranging from wedding/birthday party toasts to political campaign speeches.
The aim of writing speeches can be to inform, to persuade, to appeal, to instruct, or to entertain.
STRUCTURE OF A SPEECH
A speech often follows a three part structure:
- a highly engaging and motivational opening. This is the part that determines whether your audience will be held spellbound till the end of the speech or whether they will lose interest in the speech even before the conclusion.
- a well-structured argument with several main points. It is one thing to get the attention of the audience from the beginning and yet another thing to sustain the attention. The attention span of humans is very short. Therefore, your speech should be written in a way that captures the attention of the audience from the beginning and also sustains it till the end of the speech without sounding boring.
- a dynamic and memorable conclusion. This determines the lasting impression your audience will have for a long duration. So, the conclusion is as important as the opening. Always remember to thank your listeners too.
LANGUAGE OF A SPEECH
The aim of written speech is to capture the attention of the audience. Therefore, the choice of language matters a lot. The speaker must be engaging and able to connect with the audience on the same emotional level.
A speech should be clear, as well as maintain a consistent point of view. In all, the language used varies depending on your audience. For instance, a speech presentation by a head girl on a valedictory service should be in formal language.
TIPS FOR GOOD TRANSACTIONAL WRITING
Knowing the different writings in this category may not be all that is required to successfully put together a transactional text. Thus, the following tips will help you to tackle any form of transactional writing successfully:
Sometimes, especially for students, you may not be told the type of transactional writing it is. It is therefore left for you to decipher which category it belongs to, from the prompt. So, in this case, first of all identify the type of writing. Is it a letter, speech, review or an article?
Who is your audience?
What is the purpose of the writing?
Once you identify these three things, you can then make a decision about the formality of your writing. Failure to identify these things, there is no way you can use the appropriate language and style.
‘D A F O R R E S T’ is an acronym that every transactional writer is encouraged to put into consideration while writing.
The acronym simply stands for:
- Direct Address
- Rhetorical Question
- Emotion Language
- Triples (Three in a row)
This involves the use of real life evidence to support your claims.
It is an error to write without verifiable facts. Doing these stairs doubt in the mind of your audience. Therefore, this is an important technique for persuasion which is usually backed up by Statistics for easier convincing.
This refers to the sharing of a personal point of view. While it may not be appropriate to express a personal opinion in some cases, many types of transactional text would be incomplete without the inclusion of the writer’s opinion as in the case of an article, speech or even a review.
To avoid bringing up conflicts, it’s best to stick to statements of fact rather than an opinion.
Repetition & Rhetorical Questions
Repeating certain words or phrases is a technique used to highlight important ideas or messages worthy of note by the readers. On the other hand, Rhetorical questions are questions that are asked without expecting a direct answer. It is meant for the reader to answer privately or to think about the question. They are mostly used in speeches and persuasive texts.
Emotion Language & Exaggeration
This is a powerful tool of persuasion. It can be used to incite strong emotions in the reader.
Regardless of the type of feeling, writers often use this type of language to evoke a desired reaction in the reader and incite them to take a particular course of action.
In a situation where a writer is speaking about the insecurity issues in a given country, he can get readers on his side through the use of emotion language.
For years we have hoped and prayed for change and out of desperation to get this desired change, we always play into the wrong hands. Every day our youths are murdered in cold blood, our women are brutally raped and yet, those who promised us change walk freely like nothing is happening. Nowhere is safe anymore. This is certainly not the change we bargained for.
Reading the example above, whatever course of action the writer wants the audience to take will certainly be achieved at ease due to the emotion languages at play.
Exaggeration is sometimes known as hyperbole and it refers to the making of intentionally over-the-top statements to increase the magnitude of an argument.
Statistics are used as supporting facts.
Example: 60% of school children perform woefully because they don’t have access to good books and teacher-student relationships.
The Rule of Threes
The human brain loves patterns because they help us make meaning in a memorable way. So, this technique appeals to the readers as well as plays on their emotions.
For example ,
Promo, Promo, Promo, “Cool, calm, collected”
As earlier stated, transactional writing covers a wide range of genres, purposes, and varying audiences. As a result of this, the skills required may differ for the various types of text.
Hence, to write transactional texts, you need to put into consideration all that has been mentioned in this article starting from identifying the type of writing, your audience and purpose of writing.
Doing this will give you an insight to plan on the successful technique to employ, using DAFORREST as a guide.
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Transactional Writing - example tasks
Hi folks - in case any of you are looking to practice planning under timed conditions, here are a whole bunch of typical Transactional Writing tasks. Remember, you need to plan to the AO demands.
How will you shape your response so that you reflect an understanding of the target audience, purpose and features of that text type?
How will you ensure you secure the highest number of marks possible for structure and organisation of paragraphing, varied vocabulary, sentence variation, punctuation and spelling?
Your local newspaper is holding a speech-writing competition and entries are invited with the title ‘School is cruel’. Write a speech as your entry. You could:
· Give examples of ways schools might provide a negative experience
· Describe what kind of pupils might struggle with school
· Explain your ideas
Write an article for the school magazine advising your peers on how they can cope with the pressures of school life. In your answer you might:
· Describe your own experiences as a pupil
· Explain the kinds of stresses experienced by pupils
· Provide some practical guidance
The Headmaster of your school has banned all smart phones from the school site. Write a letter expressing your views on this decision. You could:
· Explain why you agree or disagree with the decision
· Describe why you think smartphones are a good or bad tool for young people
· Give examples of how smart phones affect the lives of young people
Write a blog post for an online journal exploring the topic of ‘How music affects people’. In the article you might:
· Describe how music affects you
· Explain the way people use music to impact their mood or performance
· Explore the importance of music in our lives
‘It’s not possessions that matter; it’s the memories associated with them that count’.
Write a magazine article expressing your views on this topic. You could:
· Describe your most prized possessions
· Explain the reason why those items are important to you
· Explore both sides of the claim made here
Write a review for a local online public forum, offering your views on an album, film or book which you feel strongly about. You might:
· Describe the text or experience
· Explain why you feel strongly about it
· Make recommendations based on your opinion
You have recently read an editorial in your local newspaper which included the following comment - ‘ Our public libraries are expensive to maintain, under-used and should not be funded now that we have access to online texts instead.’
Write a letter to your local newspaper, expressing your response to this view. You could:
· Explain why you agree or disagree
· Describe the role of public libraries in your community
· Explore the consequences of defunding libraries
Write an entry to a tourist guidebook, giving advice to young people planning to travel abroad during their gap year. You could:
· Describe the reasons why students travel overseas
· Explain some of the precautions which might make travel safer
· Consider what planning in advance they should take and what items they might take with them
Your school has invited suggestions for an inspirational public figure to give a speech to the staff and pupils. Write a letter to the Headmaster to offer your suggestion. You could:
· Explain what you feel the criteria should be for choosing an inspiring figure
· Recommend your chosen figure
· Argue for why this person would be ideal to deliver a speech at your school
A local businessman has applied to your local council for permission to hold an outdoor music festival in your area. Write a letter to the committee supporting or opposing this event. You might:
· Describe the consequences of the event taking place
· Explain why the event should or shouldn’t go ahead
· Persuade the council to grant or deny permission
‘ An enjoyable day out for all the family ’. Write an article for a local newspaper with this title, recommending a local place or activity. You could:
· Describe the place or activity
· Explain why it offers something for all the family
· Explore how a family might make the most of their visit
You have a friend or relative who is considering taking up boxing as a sport. Write them a letter expressing your views on this decision. You might:
· Explain why you think boxing is or is not a good sport to take up
· Explore why you hold this view
· Persuade your friend/relative why they should consider your viewpoint
Transactional writing: write a speech about inequality
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A Powerpoint resource spanning 3 lessons: introduces the concept of inequality, purpose of a speech and the role of activists. Gives examples of successful historic/student speeches on inequality (incl. MLK 'I have a dream'), how to deliver a speech with impact. Moves on to planning tips, how to structure and write a speech and includes DIRT feedback examples. Also included is a structured print-out template for writing the speech.
Download info, july 1, 2020.
Non-fiction and transactional writing - Edexcel What is non-fiction and transactional writing?
Non-fiction texts are those that deal with facts, opinions and the real world. Many non-fiction texts follow specific conventions of language and structure.
What is non-fiction and transactional writing?
Texts close Text Any piece of writing - including text messages, emails, letters, newspaper articles, novels etc. that deal with facts, opinions and the real world are usually described as non-fiction. Transactional writing is non-fiction writing that intends to communicate information between individuals or groups.
Non-fiction texts include (amongst others):
- magazine articles
- travel writing
- reference books
Transactional texts include (amongst others):
Different text types, or forms of non-fiction have particular conventions close convention The normal standard practices for doing something. . These are the typical or expected features of a form and include structure, language and tone. For example, a newspaper article usually has a headline, uses formal language and takes a serious tone. A political speech usually addresses the audience directly, includes persuasive language and often has a rousing tone.
With all writing tasks it is important to consider:
- the conventions of the form
- your intended audience (reader)
- the purpose of your writing
Your reader might be one particular person, as with an email or letter. Or it might be a broader group of people, as with an article or speech.
Having a clear purpose will allow you to select language best suited to your task. For example, if your purpose is to entertain, your tone might be light-hearted. If your purpose is to persuade, you might include rhetorical devices close rhetorical device A rhetorical device is a technique that a writer uses to convey to the reader a meaning, with the goal of persuading them towards considering a topic from a different perspective. .
More guides on this topic
- Audience, purpose and form - Edexcel
- Writing fiction - Edexcel
- Planning - Edexcel
- Organising information and ideas - Edexcel
- Using language effectively - Edexcel
- Vocabulary - Edexcel
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How to Write an Effective Speech: GCSE Transactional Writing
Subject: English language learning
Age range: 14-16
Resource type: Lesson (complete)
11 May 2019
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If You Want to Write a Great Speech, Here’s How to Do It
Writing a speech isn’t all that different than writing for other mediums. You need to know your audience, the required length, and the purpose or topic. This is true whether your speech is for a business conference, a wedding, a school project, or any other scenario.
But there’s something about speech writing that’s especially nerve-wracking .
If you write and deliver a speech that doesn’t go over well, you’ll get feedback in real time. The people sitting in front of you could lose interest, start talking, doze off, or even wander out of the room. (Don’t worry, only audiences in movies throw tomatoes).
Of course, a poor speech is not the end of the world. You can give plenty of crummy speeches and live to tell the tale.
But we also know that a great speech is capable of changing the world. Or at least sparking an audience’s imagination, catapulting your business into success, earning an A+ on your assignment, or ensuring that the bride and groom are still friends with you after the wedding.
So if you’re feeling stressed over your impending speech writing duties, fret no more! Today we’re breaking down for you the step-by-step process of exactly how to write a great speech.
Here’s a tip: Want to make sure your writing shines? Grammarly can check your spelling and save you from grammar and punctuation mistakes. It even proofreads your text, so your work is extra polished wherever you write.
Your writing, at its best Grammarly helps you communicate confidently Write with Grammarly
1 Tips to write (and live) by
Let’s start with the 30,000 foot, big-picture view. These are the tenets that will guide you in your speech writing process (and pretty much anything else you want to write).
- Know the purpose: What are you trying to accomplish with your speech? Educate, inspire, entertain, argue a point? Your goals will dictate the tone and structure, and result in dramatically different speeches.
- Know your audience: Your speech should be tailored for your audience, both in terms of ideas and language. If you’re speaking at a sound healer convention, you won’t need to explain the concept of energetic blocks. And if you’re speaking to an octogenarians-only quilting circle, you probably shouldn’t drop as many F-bombs as you would with your local biker gang.
- Know the length: You don’t want to underwhelm or overwhelm your audience.Ten minutes may be too short for your keynote address, but it’s probably too long for your best man speech. Don’t leave things up to chance. Your writing process will be much easier if you keep your eye on your target length.
- Write, revise, practice, revise, practice…: MLK’s “I Have a Dream” speech wasn’t written in a day. Give yourself the time you need to practice your material and work through multiple drafts. Don’t expect to nail everything on the first try.
2 The step-by-step process
Still feeling stressed over how to get started? Here’s how to write your speech from concept to completion.
Step 1: Outline your speech’s structure. What are the main ideas for each section?
Step 2: Flesh out the main ideas in your outline. Don’t worry about finding the perfect words. Just let your creativity flow and get it all out!
Step 3: Edit and polish what you’ve written until you have a cohesive first draft of your speech
Step 4: Practice, practice, practice. The more you practice your speech the more you’ll discover which sections need reworked, which transitions should be improved, and which sentences are hard to say. You’ll also find out how you’re doing on length.
Step 5: Update, practice, and revise your speech until it has a great flow and you feel it’s ready to accomplish its purpose.
3 The universal structure
Getting hung up on Step 1? Here’s a structure you can follow for any type of speech.
Who are you, why are are you giving this speech, what is your main thesis?
The “who” and “why” can be longer or shorter depending on the context. For example, if you’re speaking at a wedding, you’ll want to explain your relationship to the bride and groom and why they mean so much to you. But if you’re presenting to your class at school, you may be able to head straight into your thesis.
If you’re presenting in a business or motivational setting, this is a crucial time to hook your audience’s attention and pique their curiosity. Typically someone else will have already introduced you and your accolades, so use this to your advantage and dive straight in.
“Hi everyone, it’s great to be here! As Kevin just said, I’ve been an urban beet farmer for 30 years, and a couple years back I got this absolutely crazy idea. What if…”
Idea 1, Idea 2, Idea 3…
The majority of your speech should be spent presenting your thesis and supporting material in a simple, organized way.
Whether you’re giving an inspirational talk or a business presentation, rambling is a sure-fire way to lose your audience’s attention. Don’t try to share absolutely everything you know on your topic, instead pick a few (two to five) key points to present to your audience.
Stick to one point at a time and finish the thought before you move on to the next. Build in clear, logical transitions from idea to idea.
Want to make your speech memorable? Studies have shown our brains are great at remember stories! As much as is appropriate, make your speech personal and include your own anecdotes and thoughts.
We’re also better at remembering big ideas if they’re condensed into a few memorable words, so do your best to sum up your thesis.
“I have a dream.”
“Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”
“Make good art.”
What do you want your audience to walk out of the room remembering?
Wrap everything up and drive home your main idea, whether that’s through providing a few (one to three) key takeaways, or telling one last story that perfectly illustrates your point.
Here are some examples of how your outline might look
As a researcher presenting your findings…
Introduction: Explain the key problem or question of your research.
Main message: Describe the research process, then describe your three key findings.
Takeaway: Present your conclusions and their implications, then your next steps for moving forward.
As the maid of honor giving a speech at your best friend’s wedding…
Introduction: Explain who you are and how you met the bride.
Main message: Recount three funny and heartwarming stories about your decades-long friendship with her, plus your first impressions of the groom.
Takeaway: Wrap things up by expounding on how amazing the bride and groom’s love for each other is, how they’re meant to be together, and how you know their love will last a lifetime. …L’chaim!
What are your favorite tips for writing a great speech?
Here’s a tip: Grammarly’s Citation Generator ensures your essays have flawless citations and no plagiarism. Try it for citing speeches in Chicago , MLA , and APA styles.
Writing and Presenting Transactional text: Speech/Dialogue/Interview
In this webquest, learners will be shown how to prepare 3 types of transactional texts, namely speech, dialogue and an interview.
- be able to plan/draft and present these transactional texts
- be able to make use of language structures and conventions
- know the formats and features of the 3 transactional texts
Step 1: Click on the Dialogue tutorial.
Step 2: Write a short (10 - 15 lines) dialogue. Make it as informal as you possibly can. The topics are:
- You and your parent talk about your day at school.
- You and your grand parent discuss an animal that you saw in the zoo.
- Two ants complain about their busy day.
- Two old pieces of fruit discuss their lives.
Step 3: Submit it to my email as a word document for evaluation.
Step 4: The interview transactional text follows the same format as a dialogue, but it is more formal. There is an interviewer and an interviewee (the person being interviewed).
Step 5: Your local radio station has become aware of your involvement in making your community a better place. Write the interview. It must be 10 - 15 lines in length.
Step 6: Submit the interview as a word document to my email for evaluation.
Step 7: Click on the Speech tutorial.
Step 8: Write a speech (100 words) about one of the following topics.
- Should there be a ban on smoking in public places?
- Should people who have been vaccinated be allowed to not wear their masks in public places?
- Should exotic animals be kept as pets?
- Is technology relevant now more than ever? Why?
Step 9: Submit the speech in a word document and an audio file of you reading the speech to my email for evaluation.
To conclude, please answer the following questions.
- How was your experience using this webquest?
- Have you felt your skills improve after this lesson?
- How likely are you to use the information you've gained in real world situations?
Don't forget to practice more in your free time. If you have any more questions, my email is further down.
How to write the perfect speech by The English Teacher .
√√ Writing an Interview | Text Type Studies | Essential English Skills by iitutor.com
Dialogue in Creative Writing by Eric Buffington
Dialog Topics for Writing a Role-Play Script by ESL Ideas
Speech Topics in English for Students and Children on toppr.com
My email, if you have any questions or otherwise need to contact me : [email protected]
The 7 Step Formula For Writing A Speech
Designed especially for presenters who are new to speech writing, The 7 Step Formula For Writing A Speech lays out a systematic approach that demystifies the process and shows you how to transform your thoughts into compelling presentations. This book is the ticket to confident writing that ensures your content is well-planned and organized, helping you avoid the intimidation of a blank screen, meandering thoughts, or disorganization. Written in a style that's easy for anyone to follow, with relatable examples and personal anecdotes, it's the ultimate "how-to" for those just starting out. Plus, you'll discover the bonus insights on behavior styles, enabling you to fashion your content to connect with different personalities, delivering more successful results. You'll learn to: Clarify Your Goal: Lay the foundation for your speech or presentation by zeroing in on your core message and purpose, ensuring you have a solid foundation for success. Learn how to move beyond the impulse to start in PowerPoint and instead focus on creating a strong organization and roadmap for your content. Analyze Your Audience: Discover strategies to navigate your audience and customize your speech to resonate with different needs and personalities. Design a Logical Flow: Master the art of organizing your speech so it makes sense, structuring your content for maximum results, and ensuring your message flows strategically and effortlessly. Use Powerful Language: Elevate your speech through vivid and impactful language to engage, inspire and influence your audience so that you leave a lasting impression and ensure your message sticks. Compose Memorable Introductions and Closings: Utilize dynamic hacks to grab the attention of your audience from the outset and keep them hooked throughout. Whether you're a seasoned presenter looking to refine your skills or someone who's felt lost in the process, The 7 Step Formula For Writing A Speech is the ultimate GPS for unlocking the full power of your presentations.
Supreme Court to consider giving First Amendment protections to social media posts
Professor Emeritus of Communication and Rhetorical Studies, Syracuse University
Lynn Greenky does not work for, consult, own shares in or receive funding from any company or organization that would benefit from this article, and has disclosed no relevant affiliations beyond their academic appointment.
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The First Amendment does not protect messages posted on social media platforms.
The companies that own the platforms can – and do – remove, promote or limit the distribution of any posts according to corporate policies . But all that might soon change.
The Supreme Court has agreed to hear five cases during this current term, which ends in June 2024, that collectively give the court the opportunity to reexamine the nature of content moderation – the rules governing discussions on social media platforms such as Facebook and X, formerly known as Twitter – and the constitutional limitations on the government to affect speech on the platforms.
Content moderation, whether done manually by company employees or automatically by a platform’s software and algorithms, affects what viewers can see on a digital media page. Messages that are promoted garner greater viewership and greater interaction; those that are deprioritized or removed will obviously receive less attention. Content moderation policies reflect decisions by digital platforms about the relative value of posted messages.
As an attorney, professor and author of a book about the boundaries of the First Amendment , I believe that the constitutional challenges presented by these cases will give the court the occasion to advise government, corporations and users of interactive technologies what their rights and responsibilities are as communications technologies continue to evolve.
In late October 2023, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments on two related cases in which both sets of plaintiffs argued that elected officials who use their social media accounts either exclusively or partially to promote their politics and policies cannot constitutionally block constituents from posting comments on the officials’ pages.
In one of those cases, O’Connor-Radcliff v. Garnier , two school board members from the Poway Unified School District in California blocked a set of parents – who frequently posted repetitive and critical comments on the board members’ Facebook and Twitter accounts – from viewing the board members’ accounts.
In the other case heard in October, Lindke v. Freed , the city manager of Port Huron, Michigan, apparently angered by critical comments about a posted picture, blocked a constituent from viewing or posting on the manager’s Facebook page.
Courts have long held that public spaces, like parks and sidewalks, are public forums, which must remain open to free and robust conversation and debate , subject only to neutral rules unrelated to the content of the speech expressed . The silenced constituents in the current cases insisted that in a world where a lot of public discussion is conducted in interactive social media, digital spaces used by government representatives for communicating with their constituents are also public forums and should be subject to the same First Amendment rules as their physical counterparts.
If the Supreme Court rules that public forums can be both physical and virtual, government officials will not be able to arbitrarily block users from viewing and responding to their content or remove constituent comments with which they disagree. On the other hand, if the Supreme Court rejects the plaintiffs’ argument, the only recourse for frustrated constituents will be to create competing social media spaces where they can criticize and argue at will.
Content moderation as editorial choices
Two other cases – NetChoice LLC v. Paxton and Moody v. NetChoice LLC – also relate to the question of how the government should regulate online discussions. Florida and Texas have both passed laws that modify the internal policies and algorithms of large social media platforms by regulating how the platforms can promote, demote or remove posts.
NetChoice, a tech industry trade group representing a wide range of social media platforms and online businesses, including Meta, Amazon, Airbnb and TikTok, contends that the platforms are not public forums. The group says that the Florida and Texas legislation unconstitutionally restricts the social media companies’ First Amendment right to make their own editorial choices about what appears on their sites.
In addition, NetChoice alleges that by limiting Facebook’s or X’s ability to rank, repress or even remove speech – whether manually or with algorithms – the Texas and Florida laws amount to government requirements that the platforms host speech they didn’t want to , which is also unconstitutional.
NetChoice is asking the Supreme Court to rule the laws unconstitutional so that the platforms remain free to make their own independent choices regarding when, how and whether posts will remain available for view and comment.
In an effort to reduce harmful speech that proliferates across the internet – speech that supports criminal and terrorist activity as well as misinformation and disinformation – the federal government has engaged in wide-ranging discussions with internet companies about their content moderation policies .
To that end, the Biden administration has regularly advised – some say strong-armed – social media platforms to deprioritize or remove posts the government had flagged as misleading, false or harmful. Some of the posts related to misinformation about COVID-19 vaccines or promoted human trafficking. On several occasions, the officials would suggest that platform companies ban a user who posted the material from making further posts. Sometimes, the corporate representatives themselves would ask the government what to do with a particular post.
While the public might be generally aware that content moderation policies exist, people are not always aware of how those policies affect the information to which they are exposed. Specifically, audiences have no way to measure how content moderation policies affect the marketplace of ideas or influence debate and discussion about public issues.
In Missouri v. Biden , the plaintiffs argue that government efforts to persuade social media platforms to publish or remove posts were so relentless and invasive that the moderation policies no longer reflected the companies’ own editorial choices. Rather, they argue, the policies were in reality government directives that effectively silenced – and unconstitutionally censored – speakers with whom the government disagreed.
The court’s decision in this case could have wide-ranging effects on the manner and methods of government efforts to influence the information that guides the public’s debates and decisions.
- Social media
- Free speech
- US Supreme Court
- First Amendment
- US Constitution
- Content moderation
- Corporate power
- Online speech
- Social media platforms
- Social media law
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Jimmy Carter's words to Rosalynn: Amy Carter reads 75-year-old letter at memorial service
During Rosalynn Carter 's memorial service Tuesday in Atlanta, Amy Carter read a letter her father Jimmy Carter wrote to Rosalynn 75 years ago while he was in the Navy.
Former President Carter, 99, was in attendance at Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church on the campus at Emory University. Since her father was unable to speak, Amy Carter chose to read his words to Rosalynn about loving and missing her during their time living in Hawaii when he was in the service.
"My darling, every time I have ever been away from you, I have been thrilled when I returned to discover just how wonderful you are," the letter said. "While I'm away, I tried to convince myself that you really are not, could not be, as sweet and beautiful as I remember. But when I see you, I fall in love with you all over again. Does that seem strange to you? It doesn't to me. Goodbye, darling. Until tomorrow, Jimmy."
Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter were married 77 years. They had four children — Jack, James Earl "Chip", Donnel and Amy. Rosalynn Carter died at their home in Plains on Sunday, Nov. 19 after a brief stay in hospice. She was 96.
More Rosalynn Carter memorial service coverage
Everything Chip Carter, son of Jimmy & Rosalynn, said during tribute service in Atlanta
Where will Rosalynn Carter be buried? Details of the former first lady's interment