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Publication Number: FHWA-RD-03-074
Communication Reference Guide cover

Communications Reference Guide

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This Communications Reference Guide (CRG) provides you with tools, techniques, and timelines for effectively planning, scheduling, and producing your communication products, which include print materials, electronic information and technology (EIT), outreach materials, and events. It also links you with your communications and marketing resources in the Office of Corporate Research, Technology, and Innovation Management Communications and Outreach Team (HRTM). Previously known as the Quick Reference Guide and posted on the Internet at www.fhwa.dot.gov/research/tfhrc/, this document replaces previous versions of the Quick Reference Guide under the new name, Communications Reference Guide.

This guide will be useful to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Contracting Officer's Technical Representatives (COTR) and their contractors and support staff, who develop research and technology (R&T) communication products to FHWA standards and regulations referenced in this publication. The CRG is available on the Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center (TFHRC) Web site, www.fhwa.dot.gov/research/tfhrc/. This guide augments the FHWA Publications and Printing Handbook. Although this guide is available as a printed version upon request, the most recent and up-to-date version is posted on the www.fhwa.dot.gov/research/tfhrc/ Web site.

John W. McCracken
Director, Research, Development, and Technology Services


This document is disseminated under the sponsorship of the U.S. Department of Transportation in the interest of information exchange. The U.S. Government assumes no liability for the use of the information contained in this document. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation.

The U.S. Government does not endorse products or manufacturers. Trademarks or manufacturers' names appear in this report only because they are considered essential to the objective of the document.

Quality Assurance Statement

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) provides high-quality information to serve Government, industry, and the public in a manner that promotes public understanding. Standards and policies are used to ensure and maximize the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of its information. FHWA periodically reviews quality issues and adjusts its programs and processes to ensure continuous quality improvement.

Form DOT F 1700.7 (8-72)

1. Report No.


2. Government Accession No.

3. Recipient's Catalog No.

4. Title and Subtitle

Communications Reference Guide

5. Report Date

May 2004

6. Performing Organization Code:

7. Author(s)

Office of Research and Technology Services
Federal Highway Administration

8. Performing Organization Report No.

9. Performing Organization Name and Address

Office of Research and Technology Services
Federal Highway Administration
6300 Georgetown Pike
McLean, VA 22101-2296

10. Work Unit No.

11. Contract or Grant No.

12. Sponsoring Agency Name and Address

Office of Research and Technology Services

Federal Highway Administration
6300 Georgetown Pike
McLean, VA 22101-2296

13. Type of Report and Period Covered


14. Sponsoring Agency Code


15. Supplementary Notes

16. Abstract

This document presents guidelines for research and development publications. It augments the FHWA Publications and Printing Handbook. COTRS and contractors are the main audiences.

17. Key Words

publication, guidelines, HRTM, report, brochure, communication, marketing

18. Distribution Statement

No restrictions. This document is available to the public through the National Technical Information Service, Springfield, VA 22161.

19. Security Classif. (of this report)


20. Security Classif. (of this page)


21. No. of Pages


22. Price

Form DOT F 1700.7 (8-72) Reproduction of completed page authorized


SI* (Modern Metric) Conversion Factors


Chapter 1—Introduction

Chapter 2—HRTM Service and Submission Process

Chapter 3—Policies Affecting All Publications

Chapter 4—Guidelines and Styles for All Publications

Chapter 5—Preparing A Research Report

Chapter 6—Other Publications

Chapter 7—Guidelines for Periodicals

Chapter 8—Electronic Publishing

Chapter 9—Guidelines for Media Relations

Chapter 10—Distributing Your Communication Products


Appendix A—HRTM Service Request Form

Appendix B—Sample of Report Front Cover

Appendix C—Sample Inside Front Cover

Appendix D—Technical Report Documentation Page

Appendix E—Sample Metric Conversion Factors Pages

Appendix F—Sample Table of Contents

Appendix G—Sample List of Figures

Appendix H—Sample List of Tables

Appendix I—Sample Acknowledgments Page

Appendix J—List of Preferred Terminology and Abbreviations

Appendix K—List of Acronyms

Appendix L—Sample Page of a Research Web Report

Appendix M—FHWA Logo

Appendix N—Sample GPO 952 Form

Appendix O—FHWA Multimedia Model Release Form

Appendix P—FHWA Multimedia Child Model Release Form

List of Figures

Figure 11. Illustration. This is the correct four-line version of the FHWA logo

List of Tables

Federal Highway Administration | 1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE | Washington, DC 20590 | 202-366-4000
Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center | 6300 Georgetown Pike | McLean, VA | 22101