Operation Description

The description of the operation is intended to describe to the future reader an operation or process as detailed as possible, so that the latter can independently follow the described process and imitate it. The course description is introduced in the Department of German at the primary school in order to describe simple procedures.In principle, it is about creating a guide that can be readjusted by a reader. For example, a process description may include a recipe, a basic instruction, or a scientific experiment. Accordingly, accuracy and the correct order of the individual steps are the most important features of this text form.

Note: In this article, we would like to show you what is important in the process description, how it is structured, which formal criteria it must meet, and how you can formulate such a description in order to explain your readers’ workflows.

Prepare the task description
Before we can start writing and formulating, we should make some preparations so that we do not forget important things later.

In a first step, consider the process you want to describe. No matter whether it is a recipe or a manual. What is important is that it is clear what is to be done and that we do not mix any processes together.
Play the whole thing yourself. When it comes to preparing a meal, cook it, if you want to make something, try it yourself. If we write a description of the process, we should not rely on our memory, since we could overlook such possible stumbling blocks.

When carrying out the task, the experiment or the chosen activity, it makes sense to take notes. Keep in mind which steps take place one at a time and be as accurate as possible.
Also keep in mind what things are required to perform. After all, the future reader is supposed to be able to do the whole thing himself and it is annoying when an important ingredient or a necessary tool is missing.

Write the description of the operation
Once all the preparations have been made, it can go to writing. In this section, we would like to provide you with information on how to compile the process description.

The operation description always refers to repeatable operations. This means that sequences which can not be repeated can not be described by them.
It should be noted that we clearly formulate what is important. The receiver must not be allowed to misinterpret the above. Therefore, technical terms must also be used sparingly when formulating.
All the essential characteristics of the process must appear in the description and the correct sequence of the individual steps should be described correctly.
It is useful to adjust the style to the process (“after …”, “before”, “afterwards”, “before doing this …” etc.)
The text basically consists of heading, introduction, main part and conclusion.
The title briefly states what is at stake. The introduction clarifies what will happen in the text and what the result of the guide will be. In the main part we explain step by step how the process can be adjusted. The conclusion rounds off the process description and may contain further notes for variants and individual modifications.
The operation description is to be written in the present (present).
It is advisable to use a nominal style. This means that if possible, we omit verbs and put on nouns when describing them. However, this is not a must.
Before the actual text should always be a list of the necessary materials, so that the reader can get these to carry out.
When writing the task description, make sure that you address your readers consistently and use the same personal pronoun (you, you).
The expression is always impersonal and describes the process universally.

Structure of a process description
Heading (must include what it’s all about)
Required materials (ingredients, tools and other preparations)
Knapper text (clear instructions for action in introduction, main section & conclusion)
Possible variations (changes, modifications, serving suggestions)
Example of an operation description
In order to clarify what has been written, let us illustrate the whole by means of an example. Sometimes you can use this as a template or pattern.

Make paper mache
Necessary materials: newspaper paper, egg cartons, a lot of tapet sellers, water, a large pot and a commercial handmixer.
The following guide explains step by step how to make papier mache, to make things out of it and design it according to your ideas.

Shred the newspaper paper in paper shreds, which is easy to handle by hand. Then rip some of the egg cartons, as the later papermaking is more stable. Then estimate the amount of shreds to choose the right amount of paste. Try how many hands you can fill with the paper shreds.

Put the pieces in the pot and add water. Per double page of a newspaper used should use about one liter of water. Then place the pot with the pulpy mass on a hotplate, which runs at medium heat and cover the pot.


Wait until the mass starts to simmer and also ensure that the top cardboard is always covered with water. If the later papiermaché has simmered for 20 to 25 minutes, remove it from the stove to process it further. Allow it to cool down a little to avoid burning.

Stir the cooling mass with the hand mixer. Alternatively, you can knead the whole thing with your hands. Then pour the remaining water out of the pot. If the water does not run smoothly, you can press it manually from the ground.

Pick up the handkerchief. On a handful of papermaking paste a tablespoon of paste into the ground. Stir the papermaker vigorously and ensure that a kneadable and mouldable mass is formed. You can then process the finished paper mache.

If the end result is too fluid, you can increase the amount of egg cartons, so that the finished plasticine becomes stronger. Optionally, less water can also be used.
Checklist for the process description
Does the headline express what the task description is?
Is it clear from the introduction which process is described?
Has it been pointed out which materials are necessary for the operation?
Are all the action sequences described in the correct order?
Is the chosen personnel form used throughout the text (you, you, man)?
Are the individual steps traceable and repeatable for others?
Have we written the text in the present tense?
Is there a final sentence that completes the text?
Tip: If we present the completed description of the process to a friend or acquaintance and ask him to read the text and follow the instructions, we can very well see if all the important points have been met. If the end result is correct and there are no queries, we have made a solid description of the process. If not, we must improve.

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