Training Class
FHWA-NHI-310119V: Writing Effective Program Review Reports: Moving People to Action (Virtual Delivery)
Date/TimeAug 22 - Aug 26

This course is offered via MSTEAMS virtual platform.  It will be spread out the week August 22nd on M/W/F from 10:00am-!2:00PM each day.  Please reserve these times on your calendar once you register.

Registration DeadlineAug 18
Class Size30
StatusSeats available
Seat Availability
8 seats available for State (DOT)
3 seats available for FHWA
7 seats available for Other
InstructorsThomas Elliot, FHWA-National Highway Institute

This course is delivered as a virtual delivery.

The ability to provide clear communication is vital to the business of FHWA and good writing skills are a key element in the communication process. FHWA uses program reviews as tools to fulfill its stewardship and oversight responsibilities, manage program risk, and identify process improvements for the Federal-aid program. Each year, FHWA conducts approximately 200 program reviews. The product of these reviews is usually a review that details the observations and recommendations of the review team in an effort to improve a process or product. The review's effectiveness is largely determined by how well the review is communicated to the target audience.

The goal of this course is to improve the writing skills of FHWA's employees. Improved writing skills should lead to higher quality review reviews, which in turn should increase FHWA's ability to motivate the reading audience to act upon the review's recommendations. Action on the part of the reader will ultimately lead to improved effectiveness in delivering FHWA programs by reducing costs, accelerating project delivery, and improving stewardship and oversight. Throughout this course, you will learn that effective writing is more than proper punctuation and using spell-check. It's learning how to write for your audience, the busy reader. You will also learn writing skills that will aid in motivating your readers to action.

Objectives / Topics

Upon completion of the course, participants will be able to:

  • write an executive summary that informs the audience about potential problems and persuades them to act on your recommendations or solution;
  • write recommendations that motivate the audience to take corrective action;
  • discuss usefulness and readability;
  • describe how review content is generated by questions;
  • develop and answer review objectives;
  • evaluate the logical link of review objectives, observations, and recommendations;
  • focus on the relevant elements of an observation finding to create convincing support;
  • use the deductive message-first structure throughout reviews;
  • design/organize reviews to benefit the busy reader;
  • control paragraph unity (one main topic) and coherence (flow);
  • avoid information overload within sentences;
  • control common sentence problems; and
  • develop objective criteria for writing and reviewing reviews.
Target Audience

This course WAS initially created and offered for FHWA personnel who are responsible for writing program reviews. However, the course content has been expanded to address any functional group reporting that needs to make the case for action within your agency.  


It is anticipated that participants may not have in-depth writing background however basic grammer will not be covered.  Instead, active writing voice and key best practices for effective pursuasion will be covered and practices. Overall, this course is most effective through their active participation.


Basic grammer.  some reading materials will be sent in advance of the course.

Additional Information

An MSTEAMS course link will be provided to registrants in advance of the course.  Once registered, please reserve the course time slots on your calendar!



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