Upwrite Press eTips - We make writing work for you
November 2006

| Conducting Primary Research | Personal Coaching | Writers’ Forum | Writers’ Forum Topic for November |
| Coming Next Month | Writing Tips | Suggestion Box | Our Products | Blended Learning |

Taking notes

Conducting Primary Research

When gathering information for a project, it helps to understand the difference between primary and secondary sources of information. A primary source is firsthand information, such as an interview or survey you conduct. A secondary source is secondhand information, such as a newspaper article you read. Whenever possible, it's best to use primary sources so that your research is fresh, directly related to your subject, and free from outside bias.

Here are a few specific types of primary research you might conduct:

  • Observations, inspections, and field research: These include personal examination and analysis, providing precise data on materials and processes.

  • Interviews: Talking with experts can provide not only useful information, but also authority and perspective.

  • Surveys, forms, and inquiry letters: These materials help you gather information to review, tabulate, and analyze. Because the information comes from multiple sources, it can offer varied views of a topic.

  • Analyses of documents, records, and artifacts: An examination of these sources of firsthand information can provide direct evidence, key facts, and in-depth details about a subject.

  • Experiments: Testing can provide direct conclusions or explain cause--effect relationships.

While primary research might require more effort initially than turning to secondary sources, it is more focused on your topic, which can save time in the long run. In addition, primary sources typically provide stronger support for your ideas than secondary sources can.

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UpWrite Press Offers Personal Coaching for Business Writing Skills

What's the quickest way to improve your business writing skills? Personal coaching may be the answer.

UpWrite Press offers a variety of personal coaching plans that teach traits and techniques of business writing.

Our personal coaching delivers real results with minimal investment in time and money. We start with your own writing samples. Our professional writing coaches study and assess them. Then we contact you at the time and place of your choosing and set up a teleconference that gives you concentrated, personalized attention. We discuss your strengths and weaknesses—no scripted observations. We show you how to improve your business writing skills by capturing your ideas, with your style and voice, in the most powerful, clear, and engaging way possible. We show you how to write faster with fewer changes. Plus, we give you strategies for improvement that you can use beyond the session.

Personal coaching is today's "executive summary" for effective business writing. For more information
about this dynamic new approach to training, download our Personal Coaching Plan* document, or call
1-800-261-8258 ext. 17.

*The Personal Coaching Plan document is provided in PDF format. For free Acrobat Reader software, visit www.adobe.com.

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Join Our Writers' Forum

We invite you to be part of our monthly eTips. Each month we pose a question or problem regarding the use of writing in business. Send us your replies, along with your name, your company's name, and a brief (1-2 sentences) description of what you do. We will print the best responses, and you will get your name out to our more than 5,000 subscribers! (We reserve the right to edit your remarks for fit and suitability.)

Writers' Forum

November Writers' Forum Topic

New Hires

If you could offer your new hires one writing tip to help them in creating your company's business communication, what would it be?

Email your response to writersforum@upwritepress.com.
Write "November Writers' Forum" in the subject line, and you could see your reply in the eTips Mid-Month Mini!

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Coming in December:

Appreciating Diversity at the Holidays


Writing Tips


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eTips is a publication of UpWrite Press, Inc., P.O. Box 460, Burlington, Wisconsin 53105. Copyright © 2006, UpWrite Press. All rights reserved. Visit www.upwritepress.com.