BUSINESS 31, Business English Fundamentals
Skills Advisory(s): ENGL 1
I. Catalog Description
This course emphasizes clear, effective written communication through the use of correct grammar, punctuation, sentence and paragraph structure in writing business research reports and other business documents.

II. Examples of Appropriate Text or Other Required Reading:
Business English, 9th, Guffey, M.E., Cengage/Thomson Learning © 2008
Report Supplement: Fundamentals of Business Communication, Chandler, Fran (For SMC Business 31)

III. Course Objectives
Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  • Use correct sentence and paragraph structure in writing clear, complete and concise business reports (feasibility studies, justification reports, progress reports, problem-solving reports) and other business documents (letters, memorandums, and e-mail).
  • Demonstrate correct usage of punctuation, capitalization, grammar, spelling, and numbers in writing business reports and other documents.
  • Plan, organize, research, format, compose and evaluate effective business reports and other business documents.
  • Organize, analyze and present information and data in writing and in visual form (tables, graphs, charts, etc.).
  • State a concise problem or issue and determine the information requirements necessary for solving the problem or issue as well as analyzing and supporting logical conclusions and recommendations.

IV. Methods of Presentation:
Discussion , Distance Education , Lecture and Discussion , Other (Specify)
Other Methods: lecture notes, PowerPoint presentations, audio and video files. Discussions to promote interaction, enhance comprhension and facilitate application and discussion of course material.

V. Course Content
% of course Topic
4% Diagnostic testing, sentence and paragraph structure
4% Nouns, possessives and personal pronouns
5% Document formats (letters, memorandums, e-mail)
4% Pronouns and antecedents
6% Verbs: kinds, voices, moods, tenses, parts, sentence structure
6% Often-misused verbs and nouns, verb and subject agreement
6% Verbals, paragraph structure
6% Modifiers: adjectives, adverbs, prepositions
5% Conjunctions to join equals and unequals
5% Commas, semicolons and colons
5% Punctuation: abbreviations, numbers, question mark usage, exclamation points, dashes, parentheses, quotation marks, brackets, underscore and italics
2% Capitalization
8% Business reports: types, formatting
8% Business reports: planning and researching
9% Business reports: organizing and presenting information and data
9% Business reports: composing
8% Business reports: evaluating
100% Total
VI. Methods of Evaluation: (Actual point distribution will vary from instructor to instructor but approximate values are shown.)
Percentage Evaluation Method
30 % Research Projects - Final Research Report
10 % Class Participation
30 % Final exam - Unit exams and final
30 % Other - Preliminary Reports/Other Documents (Business Letters, Etc)
100 % Total
VII. Sample Assignments:
Analyze a business case study (recent ethical dilemma). Summarize the key issues of the problem. Compare and contrast the different alternatives in resolving the situation. Writing will be evaluated for correct grammar, technical aspects, clarity, insight, and relevance.

Write an appropriate cover letter that could accompany your resume. Research the components of such a letter. Use the correct business letter format and effective writing techniques in presenting a professional document.

VIII. Student Learning Outcomes
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to comprehend and analyze college level/professional business writing and respond with writing effective analytic documents and reports.
  • Students will research a business related topic by using the library, web-based and/or field research and will write a research paper that demonstrates effective writing, carefully evaluated and well-documented material to support a clearly defined purpose or position.
  • Demonstrate a level of engagement in the subject matter that reveals their understanding of the value of the course content beyond the task itself, specifically as it relates to linking the relevance of course content to careers in business and accounting and their personal lives.