PROW 210 (SB02) Minor Essay (worth 15% of your final grade): hard copy due by 8 am February 13, 2020 and online via Blackboard. Please read to the very end of this document.

The file attachment must be in .doc or .docx format and the file name must follow this format: Section Minor Essay Surname+initial.

Example: SB02 Minor Essay SmithJ

Topic options:

  • English language literacy and banking/investment: Challenges for financial sector communicators.
  • Business and Reconciliation: How the language of the 92nd Call to Action of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission has filtered into business.
  • Five words that trigger barriers to communication in Canadian marketing.
  • Bad poetry for better profits: How poetic devices inform marketing slogans, taglines and jingles.

In option 3 you are expected to find actual research and samples if at all possible.  For Option 4 the important word is how.
You may use library, internet, and current media sources as references (including periodicals, books, DVDs, television programs etc). Wiki sources are NOT permitted. You are expected to include both academic and credible trade sources.

Write a paper of no fewer than 750 and no more than 1000 words addressing one of the above topics.  The word count does NOT include the reference list, appendix or direct quotes. First person point of view is acceptable as long as it is not informal.



Your paper must cite at least five sources that are not the course textbook. No exceptions. You will lose an automatic 10 marks for the first error in the reference list, even if it is a minor formatting error; an incomplete list (not enough sources or failing to include a source referenced in the paper) will incur a further 5 mark penalty.


As for all assignments in this course, the grammar is linked to the grading. All grammar errors will be marked, but not all errors will incur a penalty. You will be penalized only for errors related to the grammar topics which have been covered before the submission date. Grading will be out of 100 and will be based on a combination of the following:


  • Adherence to traditional essay structure (Thesis – Development – Conclusion). Note that an abstract will NOT be required.
  • Excellence in writing (clarity, brevity, grammar and style)
  • Breadth and depth of research
  • Effectiveness and relevance of examples
  • Proper presentation (layout, references). Consult the course outline for instructions.


Based on the audience for the paper, the following assumptions can be made:


  • The audience is educated.
  • The audience has expertise in the area of writing for business.
  • The audience has a diverse professional background and welcomes diverse subject matter.
  • The audience cares about the accuracy of the written language.
  • The audience abhors “filler”. Sweeping general statements, even in the introduction, will not be met with enthusiasm.


Provide a cover page, use a consistent APA style for the text, and be consistent in your approach to spelling  (choose one of US, UK, or Canadian) and the style you choose for references (APA or Vancouver).

MacEwan’s Library homepage has a link to a brief APA guide, and that guide is the one I will refer to when marking.


Notes about the reference list:


  1. Be completely accurate about the references: names, dates, titles.
  2. Be consistent: use the same style for all your references.
  3. In APA style, arrange your reference list alphabetically by last name of the principal author for each reference. If an article or book has more than one author, use the same order as you find on the article – do not alphabetize the order of the authors in a single reference.


IMPORTANT: As an appendix to your paper, submit a brief rationale of each of your choice of referenced materials. Explain the value of each referenced work and critically evaluate the limitations of the resource. The appendix is mandatory but will not be scrutinized for grammar to the same degree as the body of the paper.

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