Module 2- Task 2: Written specifications (Product Specification Document – PSD)

TASK 2: Written specifications (Product Specification Document – PSD)

Once the product is regarded as feasible, you’ll have to describe its main technical features before subsequent prototyping and ultimate production starts. In this task, you will learn about both the genre ‘Technical Specifications’ and the technical register used.


Activity 1 – Describing your product – main characteristics

Activity 2 – Analysing a short technical specifications document

Activity 3 – Language of technical specifications

Activity 4 – Outlining and completing a PSD

REAL-LIFE TASK :  Producing the final version of the technical specifications document

Learning objectives for task 2:



–       B1 I can identify the type of technical text, such as reports, articles, letters, web pages and instructions.

–       B1 I can quickly read through longer texts in order to locate specific factual information

–       B2 I can extract the information in the different sections of a research article within my own field, if I can reread difficult sections and consult the dictionary.

–       C1 I can understand detailed and complex reports and articles within my field, with the occasional use of a dictionary.

–       C1 I can understand in detail specialized texts and complex factual documents in my academic or professional field, such as technical manuals, project descriptions, and legal contracts, with the occasional use of a dictionary.



–       B1 I can use the passive voice to express ideas that require an impersonal construction or when it is more convenient to stress the thing done than the doer.

–       B2 I can write a report evaluating different ideas or solutions to a problem, using polite, academic language with occasional errors.

–       B2 I can use a variety of cohesive devices to mark clearly the relationships between ideas within technical essays, summaries or compositions.

–       B2 I can plan, review and check my pieces of writing with the help of a dictionary and other reference sources.

–       C1 I can write clear, well-structured texts on complex subjects related to my fields of interest, supporting my arguments, giving relevant examples, and ending with an appropriate conclusion.

–       C1 I can write clear, detailed and well-structured descriptions in a style according to the reader in mind.



–       B2 I can follow the essentials of lectures, talks and reports and other forms of academic or professional presentations in my field.

–       B2 I can use a variety of strategies to achieve comprehension, including listening for main points and using contextual clues.

–       C1 I can follow extended speech on complex topics of academic or vocational relevance, though I may need to confirm occasional details, especially if the accent is unfamiliar.

–       C1 I can generally follow complex interactions in group discussion and debate, even on abstract and unfamiliar topics.

–       C1 I can understand lectures, talks and presentations in my professional or academic field of interest even when the subject is complex.

–       C1 I can understand complex technical information, such as operating instructions and specifications for familiar products and services if clear standard language is used.



–       B2 I can give clear, detailed descriptions on subjects related to my field of interest, using the special language appropriate for the theme with occasional mistakes.

–       C1 I can give oral reports about technical and professional subjects.

–       B2 I can contribute personal ideas and defend them with arguments in a technical discussion.

–       B2 I can give a clear, systematically developed presentation (of a project or a report) accompanied by visual aids to transmit significant points and relevant details.



·       Vocabulary: measurement, shapes, dimensions, materials, uses and function, advantages and arguments.

·       Grammar & Discourse: modal verbs (requirements), physical and function description; compound nouns.

·       Pronunciation: /ʒ/ measure, endings in –ure and –ture /tʃ/, the schwa, intonation for emphasis.


GENRE: Written technical specifications —  (Product Specifications Document – PSD)

INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATIVE COMPETENCE (IC): Designing a product for an international market. Product characteristics (what aspects of an international market must we take into account? How do we appeal to international customers? Branding? Different values.)