Awards & Honors
Rudolph J. Joenk, Jr. Award. For best paper in the 2017 IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication: “Plain Language in the US Gains Momentum: 1940–2015.” IEEE Professional Communication Society, 2018.
Horace Hockley Communication Award. For “Lifetime Contributions to Excellence in Technical Communication.” United Kingdom’s Institute of Scientific and Technical Communicators, 2017.
Rigo Award. For “Outstanding Lifetime Contributions in Communication Design Research and Education.” Association of Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group on Design of Communication, 2017.
Best Article on Philosophy or Theory of Technical or Scientific Communication Award. For “What We Know About Expertise in Professional Communication.” National Council of Teachers of English, 2014.
Award for Excellence in Educational Program Assessment. For “Bioengineers as Professional Communicators” (with J. R. Hayes). Council for Programs in Technical and Scientific Communication, 2009.
Landmark Paper Author in Professional Communication. For writing one of the best and most cited papers from 1957–2007: “Evaluating Text Quality: The Continuum from Text-Focused to Reader-Focused Methods.” IEEE Professional Communication Society, 2007.
Ken Rainey Excellence in Research Award. For “Outstanding Research Contributions to Information Design, Passion for Consumer Advocacy, and Exceptional Service as an International Ambassador for Research.” Society for Technical Communication, 2007.
Best Redesign of a Textbook Award. For the redesign of a physics text by Edwin F. Taylor and John Archibald Wheeler: Exploring Black Holes: Introduction to General Relativity. Apex Awards for Publication Excellence, 2001.
Best Book Award. For Dynamics in Document Design: Creating Texts for Readers (NY: Wiley). Society for Technical Communication (Pittsburgh), 1998.
Diana Award (Co-recognition). Presented to Carnegie Mellon University’s Communications Design Center for significant contributions to usability research and technical communication. Recognized as a Co-Director with J. R. Hayes & T. M. Duffy. Association of Computing Machinery’s Special Interest Group on Design of Communication, 1995.
Best Article on Methods of Teaching Technical or Scientific Communication Award. For “What Can Document Designers Learn from Usability Testing?” National Council of Teachers of English, 1993.
Frank R. Smith Award for Outstanding Article of the Year. For “Document Design from 1980 to 1989: Challenges that Remain.” Society for Technical Communication, 1990.
Promising Researcher in English Education Award. For best dissertation about college-level writing in the US: “Teaching Writers to Anticipate the Reader’s Needs: A Classroom-Evaluated Pedagogy.” National Council of Teachers of English, 1988.
Richard Braddock Award (Co-recipient). For best article to appear in College Composition and Communication during 1986. For “Detection, Diagnosis, and Strategies of Revision.” With L. Flower, J. R. Hayes, L. Carey, & J. Stratman. Conference on College Composition and Communication, 1987.
Honorary Fellow. For “Substantial Knowledge and Experience in Technical Communication.” United Kingdom’s Institute of Scientific and Technical Communicators, 2017.
Legend of Technical Communication. For “Significant Lifetime Work in Document Design, Audience Analysis, and Usability Testing.” Intercom Magazine, 63(10) 23–26. Society for Technical Communication, 2016.
Fellow. For “Setting a High Standard for Well-Designed, Quality Research and for Work in Helping Communication Designers Make Decisions Based on Research.” Association of Teachers of Technical Writing, 2015.
Distinguished Alumni. For “Helping to Originate and Develop the Field of Information Design.” Edinboro University, Department of English and Philosophy, 2016.
Fellow. For “Advancing the Understanding of Research and Best Practices Needed to Communicate to Diverse Audiences Across Skill Levels and Cultures.” Society for Technical Communication, 2007.
Author, Essential Work on Technical Communication. For “Conceptual and Practical Aspects of Visual Design”: Dynamics in Document Design: Creating Texts for Readers. Technical Communication, 50(4), 611. Society for Technical Communication, 2003.
Volunteer Recognition. For “Generous, Unselfish Effort and for Being Indispensable to Furthering of our Local Animal Cause.” Animal Rescue League of Pittsburgh, 1995.