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10/11/2004

ASD (AECMA) SIMPLIFIED ENGLISH

Extracts from the Airbus France Training Course for Authors Kathy Barthe, Airbus ASD SEMG Chairperson

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AECMA (now ASD) Simplified English

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Background

1979: Request from the AEA (Association of European Airlines)

to

AECMA (Association of European Aerospace Industries ) For manuals More easily understandable With a more consistent style

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in particular for Non-native speakers of English Easier translation (or better, no translation)

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And after that?

· 1979-82: Investigation by AECMA,

Initial work by Fokker, Contacts with AIA (Aerospace Industries

Association of America)

· 1983:

AECMA Simplified English Project Group

- Representatives of 5 AECMA member countries + US - Civil aeronautics, but also military

· 1986:

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1st release of the SE Guide First users Becomes an ATA 100 requirement for civil aircraft documentation. Current release (Issue 2)

· 2004:

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ATA Spec i2200

"Text and Material - Style 1.1. Text Content

Text shall be brief and concise. The sentence structure shall be simple and direct, avoiding the obvious and the elementary, and omitting discussions of theory except where essential for practical understanding and application. All related data shall be grouped in a logical manner.

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Writing rules and vocabulary shall be in accordance with AECMA Simplified English [AECMA No. PSC-85-16598].

Instructions shall be covered adequately by text or tabular data and presented so that conversion to equivalent equipment may be determined."

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So what is Simplified English

Rules related to style features for: Maximum READABILITY of AIRCRAFT Documentation

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SE Designed for

Aircraft Maintenance Manuals (AMM) Trouble Shooting Manuals (TSM) Component Maintenance Manuals (CMM) (Vendors)

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But can be (and is) adapted to other manuals and other industries

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SE consists of ...

· 62 rules Words Noun phrases Verbs Sentences Procedures Descriptive text Warnings, Cautions and Notes Punctuation and word counts Writing Practices · A Dictionary of approved "general" words · All contained in a Guide

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Some Examples

Non-SE It is equally important that there should be no seasonal changes in the procedures, as, although aircraft fuel system icing due to water contamination is more often met with in winter, it can be equally dangerous during the summer months.

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· · · ·

Sentence of 40 words Complex sentence structure Noun cluster Ambiguous words

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Some Examples

Non-SE It is equally important that there should be no seasonal changes in the procedures, as, although aircraft fuel system icing due to water contamination is more often met with in winter, it can be equally dangerous during the summer months.

SE Use the same procedures all the time, because water in the fuel system can freeze during summer or winter.

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· · · ·

Sentence of 40 words Complex sentence structure Noun cluster Ambiguous words

· Sentence of 19 words · Simple sentence structure · Simple words · No long noun clusters

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Some Examples

Non-SE This topic is for inspection of the outer wing bottom skin lower surface spanwise skin joints at stringer 13 and stringer 20 between Rib 12 and Rib 27 excluding areas covered by flap track fairings 3, 4 and 5.

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· · · ·

One sentence of 39 words A noun cluster of 9 words No punctuation Ambiguous "-ing" form

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Some Examples

Non-SE This topic is for inspection of the outer wing bottom skin lower surface spanwise skin joints at stringer 13 and stringer 20 between Rib 12 and Rib 27 excluding areas covered by flap track fairings 3, 4 and 5. SE This topic gives the inspection procedure for the longitudinal skin joints on the lower surface of the outer wing. The skin joints are on the external surface of the skin, at stringers 13 and 20, between ribs 12 and 27. This procedure does not include inspection of the area above flap track fairings 3, 4 and 5.

· Three sentences of 19, 21 and 17

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· · · ·

One sentence of 39 words A noun cluster of 9 words No punctuation Ambiguous "-ing" form

·

words No noun cluster of more than three elements

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SE only for civil aircraft?

· No. · Original request from airlines, but SE is also for

military aircraft

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· Is already used in various military programs. · Has always been a requirement of S1000D.

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S1000D ­ Issue 2

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Who uses SE?

Civil aircraft

Airbus:

Maintenance documentation for A320, A340 and now A38O families Maintenance documentation for B737 aircraft and subsequent, and for MD11 + B717 (ex-MD95) Global Express, ... Helicopters Maintenance documentation for engines Component Maintenance Manuals

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Boeing/Douglas:

Bombardier:

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Westland/Agusta: Engine

mfr's:

Vendors:

Who uses SE?

Military aircraft

Eurofighter

Gripen

(SAAB)

Helicopters

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And

soon ... Airbus A400M

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Is the Guide set in stone?

No. Is updated regularly. Possible to propose modifications.

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By whom? The "AECMA Simplified English Maintenance Group" (SEMG) Representatives from :

FRANCE

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(Airbus France, for the GIFAS) - Chair GERMANY (Airbus Germany, for the BDLI) ITALY (Secondo Mona for the AIAD) ­ Vice Chair SPAIN (EADS CASA Seville for ATECMA) SWEDEN (SAAB-Gripen for the SAI) UK (Westland Helicopters, for the SBAC)

UNITED

STATES (Boeing, for

AIA) CANADA (Bombardier, for AIA-C) + Observers from SCANDINAVIAN AIRLINE SYSTEM (SAS), and TURKISH AIRLINES

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Is SE used outside the aerospace industry?

Interest by firms such as:

Shell Software S.W.I.F.T

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manufacturers (clearing bank in Belgium) manufacturers

Locomotive Medical ...

equipment companies

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Are there other forms of Controlled English?

Before SE

Basic

English (1930s) Fundamental English Language of Service and Maintenance

Caterpillar

International

(ILSAM)

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Bull

Global English Multilingual Customized English

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Xerox

Since SE

Caterpillar General

Technical English

Motor's Controlled Automotive Service Language (CASL) Controlled English

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Diebold Easy

English (IBM), ...

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Does SE work?

· Comprehension

Human Factors study by the FAA showed: ­Yes, in all cases for non-native speakers of English ­Yes, for complex procedures for native speakers of English

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· Translatability

Study by the University of Washington with Boeing showed: ­Significant decrease in the time needed.

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Supporting tools?

· Electronic version of the Guide

· Checkers: syntax checkers

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Checkers?

· The ASD SE group does not endorse any software

products.

· But most of us do have some experience with

checkers.

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· Tips available on the SEMG Web site.

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Checkers

· In general:

Checkers

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are aids, but will not think in your place. They will tell you if a word or construction is not approved, but will not tell you how to rewrite the sentence. Test software before you buy it (ask for a test licence for at least two months). Make sure that it checks the real thing (ASD SE), and not some other form of controlled English. Test it for compliance with your computer platform, of course (does it run OK, are there bugs, response time, are there particular features of your system that it cannot deal with...)

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Checkers

· But above all, test it for accuracy of parsing:

Are

the error messages it sends correct? What is the percentage of expected error messages not sent? What can it not deal with (such as carriage returns at the end of lines)?

· Can the user update the dictionaries himself or does it

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have to be done by the software provider? · What sort of words can the user put in the dictionaries? · Does the provider provide updates when there are new issues of the SE Guide?

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And training?

· Training is available from some members of the SE group,

in Europe and in North America.

· The SE group does not endorse any trainers. · Tips on the SE Web site. In general:

Make

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sure the trainer has been trained himself by an SE group member. Make sure he uses the latest issue of the Guide. Ask which rules he covers.

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Tips

· AECMA SE Maintenance Group Web site:

http://www.simplifiedenglish-aecma.org

· Two documents:

LOOKING

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FOR SE TRAINING? Some tips ...

LOOKING

FOR AUTHORING AIDS FOR SE? Some tips ...

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SIMPLIFIED ENGLISH ... the nuts and bolts

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The rules

Words

Noun Verbs Sentences Procedures Descriptive

Phrases

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Text Warnings, Cautions and Notes Punctuation and Word Counts Writing Practices

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Words

2 major types of word

1 - CONTROLLED ( = restricted use)

General

words ­ approx. 860 approved words

2 - NOT CONTROLLED

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Technical

Names - 20 categories

Technical

Verbs - 3 categories

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Technical Names

RULE: 1.1 Choose the words from: -... - Words that qualify as Technical Names (TN) -... · 20 categories

· One-word TNs:

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platform access platform acceptance check main hydraulic power

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· Multi-word TNs:

Technical Names ­ Parts of Speech

RULE: 1.6 Use a Technical Name only as a noun or an adjective, not as a verb

BOLT:

­ Attach the plate with a bolt. ­ Bolt the two plates together.

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? ?

OIL

­ Fill the Integrated Drive Generator (IDG) with oil.? ­ Oil the IDG. ?

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Technical Verbs

RULE: 1.1 Choose the words from: -... -... - Words that qualify as Technical Verbs

3

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categories

RULE: 1.11 Use Technical Verbs only as verbs, not as nouns. ...

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Words in the Dictionary

RULE: 1.1 Choose the words from: -Approved words in the -Dictionary (Part 2) · ·

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-... -... Selected on the basis of: Analysis of the words used in maintenance procedures Selection criteria: . One word for one meaning . One meaning for one word . One part of speech for one word . The shortest and most everyday words . American words and spelling

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Words in the Dictionary Parts of Speech

RULE: 1.2 Use approved words from the Dictionary only as the part of speech given

· TEST

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Test Do

the system for leaks.

? ?

a test for leaks in the system.

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Words in the Dictionary Parts of Speech

RULE: 1.2 Use approved words from the Dictionary only as the part of speech given

· TEST

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Test Do

the system for leaks.

a test for leaks in the system.

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Words in the Dictionary Meanings

RULE: 1.3 Keep to the approved meaning of a word in the Dictionary. Do not use the word with any other meaning.

FEEL

(v)

­ Feel the part to find if it is smooth?

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­ If you feel that the test is not satisfactory, ...?

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Words in the Dictionary Meanings

RULE: 1.3 Keep to the approved meaning of a word in the Dictionary. Do not use the word with any other meaning.

FEEL

(v)

­ Feel the part to find if it is smooth

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­ If you feel that the test is not satisfactory, ...

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Words in the Dictionary Forms

RULE: 1.4 Only use those forms of verbs and adjectives shown in the Dictionary

DRINK

(v) ­ DRINKS, DRANK, DRUNK

drinking?

MUST

(v) ­ NOTE: No other forms of this verb (v) burnt?

BURN DIM

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(adj) ­ DIM (DIMMER, DIMMEST) (adj) ­ NOTE: No other form of this adjective

TACKY

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Words Specific writing (not abstract)

RULE: 1.13 Make your instructions as specific as possible

Different

temperatures will change the cure time? Increase the temperature to decrease the cure time.

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Several levels of system and component failure are defined for which the cabin data system gives warning to the appropriate crew members. How many levels? What systems? Which components? Which crew members? What kind of warning?

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Words

Noun

Verbs Sentences

Phrases

Procedures Descriptive

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text Warnings, Cautions and Notes Punctuation and word counts Writing practices

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Noun clusters

RULE: 2.1 Do not make noun clusters of more than three nouns

icing system

icing fuel system icing aircraft fuel system icing ¾ icing of the aircraft fuel system

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runway

light connection resistance calibration ¾ calibration of the resistance of the runway light connection

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Noun clusters

RULE: 2.2 Clarify noun clusters that are Technical Names with one of these two methods:

Use

hyphens to show the relationship between the most closely related words

ramp service-door safety connector-pin

Explain

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the noun cluster. Then, if possible, use a shorter name after the initial explanation.

Engage the ramp service door safety connector pin (the pin that holds the ramp service door, referred to in this procedure as "the safety connector pin"). BUT: do not use hyphens if you can obey Rule 2.1

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Articles

RULE: 2.3 When appropriate, use an article (the, a, an) or a demonstrative adjective (this, these) before a noun.

Stop

start procedure? Remove bolt and stop?

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Or Stop the start procedure. Remove the bolt and the stop.

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Words Noun

phrases

Verbs

Sentences Procedures Descriptive

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text Warnings, Cautions and Notes Punctuation and word counts Writing Practices

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Verbs

· Action verbs express:

An

action: (to) sing, (to) read, (to) pressurize ­ I sing, you read, we pressurize mode of being: (to) have, (to) be ­ I have a cold, I am cold

A

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· Helping verbs:

(to)

have, (to) be, can, will, must, do ­ Can you sing? You must close the door... Did the light come on?

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Verbs

· Different forms, to express:

Person

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(I sing, he sings) Time (present, past, future) ­I sing/I am singing ­I sang/I was singing ­I have sung (this song before) ­I will sing/I am going to sing (this song tomorrow)

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What can you do with these forms?

RULE: 3.2 Use the approved forms of the verb to make only:

- The infinitive - The imperative - The simple present tense - The simple past tense - The future tense.

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(to) pressurize Pressurize! Do not pressurize If you pressurize If you pressurized You will pressurize

Tense: a form of the verb that expresses TIME: present, past, future

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Verbs The past participle

RULE: 3.3 Use the past participle only as an adjective, either with a noun or after the verbs TO BE, TO BECOME

The

hydraulic reservoir is a pressurized vessel. At the end of the test, make sure that the reservoir is (still) pressurized.

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RULE: 3.4 Do not use the past participle with a form of the verb TO HAVE to make an unapproved tense.

When

the pump has pressurized the system, ......

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Verbs The present participle

Pressurizing

Make sure that the pump is pressurizing the system. IMPLICITLY NOT PERMITTED IN SE. IS NOT A VERB FORM LISTED IN THE DICTIONARY.

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Only these ­ing words permitted: REMAINING (adj), MISSING (adj) and DURING (pre) And Some Technical Names (housing, bearing, ...)

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Active and Passive

RULE: 3.6 Use the active voice. Use only the active voice in procedural writing,

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and as much as possible in descriptive writing.

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Active and Passive

· ACTIVE VOICE: the subject of the sentence does the

action (is "active"). The pump pressurizes the hydraulic system to 3000 psi.

(The pump does the action of pressurizing)

· PASSIVE VOICE: the subject of the sentence receives the

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action (is "passive") The hydraulic system is pressurized to 3000 psi by the pump.

(The hydraulic system receives the action of being pressurized)

3DVVLYH IRUPHG E\

TO BE + PAST PARTICIPLE

Agent: whoever or whatever does the action - the pump

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Why does SE call for the active voice?

Because: · The passive is a compound verb form. SE encourages simple forms.

· Risk of confusion with the past participle used as an adjective. · Passives encourage the use of support ("prop") verbs with action

nouns.

The

measurement can be made using tool PN XXX

· In procedures, passives often used instead of imperatives.

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The

test shall be done using XXXX.

· Passives are often not necessary.

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Passive or adjective?

· Passive: verb form, therefore = action

Be

careful when you move the XXXX. It can be damaged during extension of the landing gear.

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· Adjective: describes a state, not an action

If

the XXXX is damaged, you must repair it.

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Passive or adjective? A good test

Ask

BY WHOM? BY WHAT?

= Is there an agent?

If yes, is a passive. The agent can be specified:

The reservoir is pressurized by air from the engines

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Or it can be implicit:

... The relay is then de-energized and the light comes on.

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Verbs Expressing action

RULE: 3.7 If there is an approved verb to describe an action, use the verb, not a noun or other part of speech.

NOT:

The ohmmeter gives an indication of 450 ± 22

ohms. BUT: The ohmmeter shows 450 ± 22 ohms.

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NOT:

The guidance of the rod is made by two bearings. BUT: The rod is guided by two bearings. Or Two bearings guide the rod.

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Words Noun Verbs

phrases

Sentences

Procedures Descriptive

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text Warnings, Cautions and Notes Punctuation and word counts Writing practices

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Sentences

RULE: 4.3 Use a tabular layout (vertical layout) for complex texts.

During

the final movement of the landing gear retraction, the door operating bar located on the leg contacts and turns the latch, withdrawing the roller from the slot, and the second roller entraps the door operating bar. the landing gear retracts: - The door operating bar on the leg touches and turns the latch. - This causes the roller to move out of the slot. - The second roller holds the door operating bar.

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When

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Words Noun Verbs Sentences

Phrases

Procedures

Descriptive

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text Warnings, Cautions and Notes Punctuation and word counts Writing practices

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Procedures

RULE: 5.1 Keep procedural sentences as short as possible (20 words maximum)

(Word

counts - Section 8 of the Guide)

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RULE: 5.2 Write only one instruction per sentence

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Procedures

RULE: 5.4 In an instruction, write the verb in the imperative ("commanding") form.

Oil

and grease are to be removed with a degreasing agent. Remove oil and grease with a degreasing agent.

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If

the cleaned parts are not examined immediately, protection shall be applied to prevent damage and corrosion. If you do not examine the cleaned parts immediately, apply protection on the parts to prevent damage and corrosion.

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Words Noun Verbs Sentences Procedures Descriptive

phrases

text

Warnings,

Punctuation

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Cautions and Notes

and Word counts Writing practices

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Warnings and Cautions

· RULE: 7.4 Identify your command correctly as a

warning or a caution.

· RULE: 7.1 Start a warning or a caution with a simple or

clear command.

· RULE: 7.3 If necessary, add a brief explanation ...to

give a clear idea of the possible risk.

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· RULE: 7.5 If a condition is necessary before the

technician continues, put the condition first.

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Notes

Extract from ATA i2200:

G.

Warnings, Cautions, and Notes ... Notes call attention to methods which

make the job easier. ...

Notes shall follow the text to which they relate and be located directly under and vertically in line with the text to which they apply. Warnings, cautions and notes shall always be on the same page as the text to which they apply

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Notes - S1000D definition

Chapter 2.7 Warnings, cautions and notes 1 Definitions ...

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1.3 Notes Notes used in Data Modules/Technical Publications give the user additional information which is helpful but does not belong to the immediate subject. Maintenance tasks can be made easier by the use of Notes, but when used, they do not take the place of procedural information.

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Notes - SE

RULE: 7.6 Write notes so that you give information, not commands.

"NOTE: Make sure that the ventilation operates correctly." ­Does it "Make the job easier" ?

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­Or is it an integral part of the procedure ?

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Page 67

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See the SE Guide

Punctuation

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Writing Practices

RULE: 9.1 Use a different construction to rewrite sentences in Simplified English when a word-for-word replacement is not sufficient.

Sight

gage oil level must be visible at all times during the test.

¾Make sure that you can see the oil level on the sight gage during the test.

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If

the air intake flap is failed, deactivate air inlet valve before next flight. If the air ..., disconnect (stop, isolate) the air inlet valve?

¾If the air ..., lock the air inlet valve in the fully open position... ¾If the air ..., do the deactivation procedure for the air...

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Writing Practices

RULE: 9.2 When you combine words to make a phrase, make sure that the words continue to obey the meanings given to them in the Dictionary.

When

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the fire is put out, close the valve?

¾When the fire is extinguished, close the valve.

10/11/2004

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