ERIC Number: ED236619
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-Apr
Reference Count: 0
Teaching the Grant Proposal as a Problem-Solving Strategy: A Rhetorical Approach.
Smith, Herbert J.
Technical communications courses, which frequently present the research proposal as part of the report writing segment, rarely teach the grant proposal, even though it can provide the instructor with a vehicle for presenting such rhetorical strategies as audience analysis and persuasive writing. In addition to its problem solving structure, the formal proposal also provides a classic presentation of logic--a syllogism--whose major premise is the ability of the company to demonstrate a thorough understanding of the granting agency's needs. The minor premise(s) are the specific points that illustrate how the contractor plans to use his qualifications to implement a specific plan or approach. In a very real sense the proposal introduction is the most persuasive part of the proposal, for the contracting agency needs to be convinced that the remainder of the proposal is worth reading. A good introduction will include a description of the company's chief strengths and characteristics, and a short statement of its view of project requirements. This statement of work, which can be examined for its audience analysis, ideally should tell the contractor what is wanted by the requesting agency and then give the contractor a clear idea of what is needed. One effective technique for teaching the statement of work involves having pairs of students role play as the participants in the proposal process. The instructor also may wish to show how the enthymeme, which is a rhetorical technique used to imply rather than state a causal connection, can make a proposal more effective. The conclusion, or final statement of the syllogism/proposal, is that the award of the contract should be made to the contractor based on the merits of the major and minor premises. (HOD)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers; Guides - Non-Classroom
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Rhetorical Strategies
Note: Paper presented at the Meeting of the Eastern Regional American Business Communication Association (Philadelphia, PA, April 21-22, 1983).