Document Design and Production



Corporate annual report analysis

Write a 10-12 page single space analysis comparing the annual reports these companies. How are their reports the same (much of it is required by the SEC) and how are they different? What design techniques and layouts are particularly effective and which are ineffective. Support your conclusions with citations to the readings.

The focus is on the design and layout, not the content or corporate message itself.

Of course, the design of your report itself is important. Think about how your design choices are affecting the communication of the information within it.

You should focus most of the analysis at the front half. Skip the last half which is boring financial tables. Also, perform your analysis on the body pages and not the cover page, table of contents, etc.

Annual reports





Note that the report is 5% of the overall course grade. Grading is both the quality of your evaluation and of the overall design of your report.


This is a comparison report. Don't just write a description of each report. Don't forget to summarize your analysis at the end.

Do an analysis and not just a description. For example, talking about the Disney report, one person said " It is clear that the visual presentation is meant to preempt the content." I agree with the statement and the couple of preceding sentences lead up to this claim. But part of the assignment said "What design techniques and layouts are particularly effective and which are ineffective." In this case, the techniques were described, but their effectiveness was not judged. Of course, being an academic analysis, the effectiveness statements should be supported with cites to the class readings.

Use various visual methods to help support your analysis. The report should not be just text....and adding a heading of "Disney report," "Pepsi report," etc. above paragraphs is still just text.

Use graphics to support your comparisons. I'll be judging how effectively you do use and relate the various graphics to each other. (The graphics will also help you from going crazy trying to get to 10 pages.) Screen capture programs have no trouble grabbing images from a PDF. You may need to crop the image to proper size.

Use various formatting methods to highlight the information. In the past, most of the reports were just paragraphs with headings. No graphics, no lists, no examples, etc.

Like the critical thinking paper, I'd rather see an in depth analysis of one area of the report than a high-level summary. If you have headings like: font, graphics, layout with 3-4 sentences after each, you are guilty of high-level summary.

Remember the page formatting you learned with the SunSpace assignment. Don't create blank lines with empty paragraphs.


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