Graphics areimportant since they can convey information more clearly than spokenwords (Anderson 292). Also, they can make information appealing andmemorable. It is critical to identify areas where graphics wouldincrease the persuasiveness and usefulness of intended communication.Graphics would be useful to a reader if they explained a process,demonstrated how something was done, or even showed how somethinglooked. The latter can be seen when scientists post photographs thathelp readers visualize the aftermath of earthquakes (Anderson 294).Besides, graphics can be used to display trends and highlightpertinent facts. Graphics increase the persuasiveness ofcommunication by appealing to the needs of the reader.
Several factorsneed to be evaluated before selecting the graphics that match theobjectives of the communication. The first issue concerns the tasksof the reader (Anderson 295). For example, a bar graph would beprovided if the reader was needed to use mathematical skills. It isalso important to evaluate the readers’ attitudes and opinions(Anderson 299). In some instances, more than one type of graphicwould need to be used. For example, some readers may want a generalview of the data while others may prefer to examine the details.
Graphics need tobe created and presented in a manner that makes it easy for readersto understand and use. Graphics should be designed so as to support areader’s tasks. The creator needs to imagine how the readers wouldunderstand the message in the graphic (Anderson 299). The graphicsshould also consider the knowledge and expectations of the reader.Some readers in a complex field need specialized graphics. However,communicating to general readers may require textual explanationsalong the graphics (Anderson 300). It is important to simply thegraphics by eliminating unnecessary information and includingrelevant details (Anderson 300). The creator also needs to label allthe information presented in a graph. Labeling enables readers tofind information quickly. Nevertheless, using too many labels mayhamper visual appeal (Anderson 301). Providing titles helps readersto not only locate desired graphics but also understand theinformation contained in the graphics. (Anderson 302). It may benecessary to provide a list of all graphics so as to facilitatefaster location of graphics.
Creating coloredgraphics provides support to the intended message. Color enhancesvisual presentations. It also enlivens the material and makes itappealing to the eye (Anderson 303). Color can also improve clarity,comprehension, and ease of use. Besides, the creator can use color togroup similar items, highlight a point, establish importance, andevoke an emotional response (Anderson 304). Nevertheless, it isimportant to avoid using color for decoration purposes. It also helpsto use color schemes as opposed to single colors. Bright, contrastingcolors create the strongest visual impact (Anderson 305).
Also, graphicsoftware and existing graphics need to be used effectively. Thecreator needs to use formatting features and application so as tofacilitate easy reading and deeper understanding of graphics(Anderson 307). Graphics need to be adapted to fit the currentaudience and objectives (Anderson 308). Integrating texts within thegraphics presents various benefits. In this regard, graphics need tobe placed close to their references. It is also important to use astatement that links prose to graphics. It should be clear to thereaders the desired conclusion they should draw (Anderson 309). It iscritical to adapt the graphics used when writing to differentreaders. Getting permission and citing sources for graphics showscourtesy and professionalism. This can be obtained through theCopyright law statements contained in graphics (Anderson 310).Graphics that portray misleading information should be avoided.
Anderson, Paul V. Technical Communication: A Reader-CenteredApproach. 8th ed. Boston: Wadsworth/Cengage Learning, 2014.Print.