white paper titlethe footer lower left W r i t i n g

white paper titlethe footer lower left W r i t i n g

Required Reading/Viewing

Executives by House, Layton, Livingston & Moseley from The Engineering Communication Manual. This brief chapter will provide an introduction to communicating with Executives, or as this chapter refers to them as “Authorizers.”

Making Sense of Too Much Data (Links to an external site.) by David McCandless. Talks about how he thinks about data and representing data visually. While his skill with visualizing data is beyond my expectations for you this semester, (although I would be happy to see some interesting visuals), I hope his talking about how he thinks about them helps you think about how you approach using data visually in your work.

White Paper Assignment


In this assignment, you will do research to identify the priorities of the audience you will be speaking to. You will use the research you completed to develop the student handout as the foundation for a brief white paper that will speak to major clients or investors. You may opt to do this at the level of your general field (the program in which you are studying) or specific field (i.e automotive design, cybersecurity, data visualization, highway design, medical devices, or many more). While this white paper will cover many of the same issues you addressed in the first document you will complete this document in a way that speaks to this different audience. This should include the types of issues or problems probability and statistics are used for and the way it is involved in the process of your work. You will develop a cohesive document for the purpose of introducing this new audience to the contribution probability and statistics will make in the work you will do for them or for them to make money from investing in your work. As part of this assignment, you will be expected to present this in a way that is visually appealing to an executive-level audience, tells a story that is important to them, and is grammatically correct.

Deliverable: A white paper of 600 – 1,000 words. Because I am looking for this to be visually inviting this should be 3 – 5 pages. (Your reference list does NOT count in the word count or the number of pages. For this document the reference list must be in the document – executives would not want to have to look elsewhere.)

Completing the Assignment


You may have found when you shared your first assignment with your group that you needed to complete more research on the use of probability and statistics in your field. Additionally, you will likely want to know the issues that the people you are speaking to will need to have addressed. Think about and search locations for this information that are likely to have this type of information presented.

If you are making claims about how probability and statistics are used and their importance you need to have a source to back it up.

Additionally, review the information below on Data Literacy and Business. Two of these articles contain data visualizations that you are required to include in your text, and that you will revise and focus visully to be appropriate to your purpose and audience. (You may use more of the visualized data than you are required to.)

  • The Data Literacy Index: The $500m Enterprise Value Opportunity – Results Summary. This report from Qlik and the Data Literacy Project provides insight on the importance of data literacy in business. You will think about and develop a focused presentation of the Median CDL Score by Industry (page 5) as part of your white paper. You will need to read enough of the document to understand the scale into which the data falls, as it is not well identified on the graphic.
  • The Top 4 ROI Areas for Data-Driven Transformation. This report from Qlik discusses 4 ways organizations can get return on investment in data.
  • The Human Impact of Data Literacy: A leader’s guide to democratizing data, boosting productivity and empowering the workforce. This report from Qlik and the Data Literacy Project will provide some insight on the importance of data analytics to business success. While this not necessarily the only application of statistics in your fields, it can be an important one for business leaders. Use one or more of the descriptive statistics/data visualizations from this document to provide the data for an illustration and explanation to support your white paper.


Think through what you want to accomplish (address the assigned purpose) and how you will need to do it to reach and convince this audience. Organize your content, write, review, revise (make sure you are still on track with your purpose and audience). Proofread and run a grammar check then edit. Somewhere early in the writing process, you should start to think about visuals that may help you make your point and develop them in a way that is understandable to your audience.

To help you think through the scope and structure of the content you need to develop to accomplish this look back to the reading on Executives. This chapter will provide insight into the scope, structure, purpose, and tone of the document.

Your content will include 5 APA cited sources at a minimum. When creating engaging material having relevant graphics makes your document easier to look at, include at least two relevant images. Your images must be labeled and cited.

APA in-text citation formatting (Links to an external site.)

APA reference list formatting (Links to an external site.)This section provides a description of each element of a reference list item after which are examples of different types of sources reference list formats.

Step 3: Develop a professional document

This step may be done in parallel with or after the writing process. This document should be professional, have a clearly defined hierarchy, and feel inviting and easy to read (use white space, color, and graphic elements)

Include a header and footer

  • The header top left will have the white paper title
  • The footer lower left will have your name
  • The footer lower right will have the page number (this can be done with the tool insert/page number for the entire document at once.)
  • You may opt to have a cover, but it is not required as it is usually only done for longer white papers.