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There may not be a 'write' or wrong for typographers, but I expect we should still stick to spelling rules - and in this case, it would be wrong to use 'write' for 'right'.

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Ighsaan Francis, DCES for CAT in Western Cape wrote: 

One of my passions for our subject is to 'surf' subject content in the various media!!! 

  • Top Stories for science and technology...
  • Reports in daily newspapers...
  • Articles in magazines.. 

But, how can we use topical content in the media for CAT? 
I am just about to launch my first Instalment of how to use topical media content for CAT.
Hopefully the first of many in a series titled: TOP STORIES - Computer applications in the Media.
 For this Instalment I have chosen an article which appeared on the IOL web site on the 5th March 2009 on social networking. This time around I chose to develop an assessment task based on the scenario sketched in the article:"The more we chat, the less we thrive" I tried to stay as close to the format we had in the final papers, and included sections on Theory and Practical; particularly Integration. 
Please find attached the pdf format of my first Instalment, as well as its memorandum.The accompanied data files and memoranda can be find on my web site:
I hope to make this a fortnightly issue (should time will allow  :-)), and a standing feature on my web site. My next Instalment is on using a magazine article in the class (didactical) environment. 
Instalment 2 will include:

  • a lesson plan
  • learning and teaching support material
  • assessment task
  • assessment tools  

I hope you will find my endeavours meaningful and of use in the teaching of CAT.  


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When using a word processor or creating electronic documents, we become typographers. 

According to sources, there are no rules, right and wrong do not exist. There is only effective and non-effective communication. Modern word processors allow for flexibility.

"All those rules we are supposed to follow were developed 20-400 years ago. They were developed at a time when people had not even dreamt about cable-TV, interactive media, CD-ROM, Internet and graphic applications. Human beings were not stupider than today. However, media have dramatically changed. When media change, men change." (


To communicate effectively, we arrange text and graphics on a page and produce a document for printing. Four general areas apply: (

  • Placement / Alignment
  • Style (Size, contrast, emphasis)
  • Spacing
  • Embellishment / fine-tuning

It is all about readibility, legibility and effective communication and consistency.

Common mistakes:

  1. Using underlined text to emphasise - rather use bold or italic
  2. Using two spaces after a full stop, comma or paranthesis - these should be followed by one space, not two
  3. Using keyboard quotes - rather use straight quotes
  4. Using all capitals for headings - rather use styles and/or different font sizes, etc.




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After reading the blog entry (25 June 2009) regarding Phase 2 of the PAT on Dr Pam Miller's blog and some comments made by teachers I consulted my language colleagues to enquire about what they teach learners regarding writing and more specific, reporting.

They gave me a document that may also help the CAT teachers and learners when it comes to writing. Look for the two examples of reports in this document.

According to my language colleagues, every teacher is a language teacher and should teach learners language, communication skills and how to write.

Maybe if we use these examples and explain to learners that connections, they will be able to make the connections and transfer knowledge and skills.

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