Audience & Register
Just as with all writing, integrated writing is more successful when you have considered the intended audience and appropriate register for the assignment. The added challenge here is that the audience and register of the original sources may differ from your assignment and may even vary between the sources themselves.
The audience is who will be reading your writing. The important part of audience to keep in mind when you write using sources is: what can you assume the reader knows? What information in the sources would be important to give context or definitions for? Are there terms or details that you can choose not to include because your reader would be expected to already have taht information?
When you are integrating sources into a typical research paper for this class, you usually assume that your reader does not have more than a general background knowledge on the topic. Any specific terminology, references to specific events, or explanations of processes should be introduced clearly. However, there are times like in a history course at the university level, when you can assume that your professor is familiar with key political figures or geographic locations.
In other situations, such as the TOEFL, a definition may be provided for you in the text or in the lecture. It is safe to assume that restating that definition would be appropriate.
Register is used in writing to refer to tone, specifically in reference to formality. The source material should match the tone of your own writing. A formal academic essay should be using sources that are written with the same formal tone. This means that you should be careful in your paraphrases and summaries of the text to match the language choices the author used.
Tone is very important because in conveys a layer of meaning as well. It is often not just important to understand what was said, but also how it was said. When you choose your words, match the tone. You do not want to use words like criticizes, claims, or objects to introduce the words of someone else unless the tone of that word actually matches how the source was written.
Exercise 4.28: Identify Audience and Register Differences
Take a look at these different sources. Who is the audience for each of these? How do you know? What differences in register do you notice?
Exercise 4.29: Integrated Writing (Audience/Register Focus)
Below is a department email sent to all students in your major. Read through the announcement of the change to the program. Then choose one of the additional sources. Using information from both sources, write an email explaining your situation and goals.
The University has recently made a significant push toward increasing experiential learning during the undergraduate experience. Those who have graduated having taken advantage of such experiences report that it was fundamental in to their learning. As more colleges shift toward this type of learning, expanding experiential learning here will help our graduates be more competitive in the job market. Effective next semester, the department will require all students in this major to register for an off-campus internship directly related to the coursework.
Because this program of study change will impact a large number of students, we suggest that you contact your faculty advisor as soon as possible to set an appointment to discuss this new requirement. Your advisor will help you to make any necessary changes to your plan for coursework and can connect you to internship opportunities, which is especially crucial if you hope to do your internship outside of Provo. Although the credits will be primarily given based off of the work you do through the internship, you will report throughout the semester to your faculty advisor and meet for an online class every other week. To get the add code for the internship course, you will need to (1) meet with your faculty advisor and (2) write a short proposal explaining how this internship connects to your coursework and professional goals.
- Email from faculty advisor: Hello. I would be happy to meet with you, but I'm out of town for the next two weeks. I can see that you have already registered for a heavy load of courses next semester. Are you planning to graduate soon? Or would you be able to delay taking any of these courses? I'm concerned that adding an internship would make the semester too demanding. Let me know what your plan is, and I'll get back to you when I'm back in the office.
- Comment from a professor in class: Actually, I have been doing some consulting work with the local museum about community engagement. It's been eye-opening, but I honestly haven't had as much time to dedicate to the project as I originally hoped for. So if any of you are interested in something like that, you can send me an email or stop by my office for more details.
- Email from a friend: It's so good to hear from you! Yes, I'm doing an internship in Chicago right now, and it has been so great! Are you interested in doing an internship here too? What requirements do you have? I can see if I can put in a good word for you!!