Technical Writing

Technical Writing and Communication Has Evolved

The U.S. Department of Labor expects employment for writers and editors to grow 10 percent. However, the field has evolved. New jobs will likely be fueled by demand from web-based publications driven by content management systems. Technical writers with a solid foundation in content management will have an edge.

Evolving Curriculum Keeps Pace with the Change

As technology becomes more complex, technical writers need to expand their skill sets to ensure that they keep pace with fast moving web-based communications. UCSC Extension aims to produce Silicon Valley’s most skilled and multi-faceted technical communicators. This is why we have evolved our technical writing curriculum to offer the state-of-the-art knowledge, resources, tools, and ideas you need to sustain a successful career.

Custom-Designed Online Curriculum Is Comprehensive and Up to Date

We are Silicon Valley’s only Technical Writing and Communication program offering a full certificate curriculum online. Our program is designed and delivered by fellows of the prestigious Society for Technical Communication and internationally recognized subject-matter experts. Courses are structured into five categories, each catering to a different need and expertise within the professional community:

  • Technical Communication Fundamentals
  • Advanced Topics in Communication
  • Project Leadership
  • Tools and Technologies
  • Engineering Communication

Take individual courses to expand or update specific skills, or pursue the certificate for comprehensive instruction from the professionals who have helped define the technical writing profession.

Benefits of Studying at UCSC Extension

You will gain unique benefits studying with the truly exceptional instructional team behind the online Technical Writing and Communications program at UCSC Silicon Valley Extension:

  • 100% online curriculum: individual courses and full certificate
  • Unprecedented access to world's leading experts
  • Learn the state-of-the-art at the heart of high-tech
  • Network with fellows of the Society for Technical Communication
  • Silicon Valley's leading program in Technical Communication


Who Should Attend This Program

Communications and management professionals come to us from the aerospace, automotive, biotech, business management, construction, engineering, financial services, healthcare, IT, pharmaceutical, telecommunications, e-commerce, and internet industries as well as from a wide variety of disciplines and career paths:

  • Technical writers, editors or communicators
  • Information developers, engineers or architects
  • Documentation project leads
  • Engineering managers
  • User experience designers
  • User experience architects
  • Usability engineers
  • Visual designers
  • Recent graduates
  • Career changers


There are no specific prerequisites for entering this program.

Recommended Course Sequence

It is recommended you start with "Technical Communication: An Introduction to the Profession". You must end with "Final Project: Resume and Portfolio Preparation"

Certificate Application Information

We encourage you to establish candidacy in a certificate program early in your studies. There are substantial benefits in doing so:

  • Curriculum changes subsequent to the date your application is received will not affect your course requirements.
  • Candidates will be notified of updates or special opportunities related to the program

Technical Writing Certificate Requirements

Total: 10 courses
Required: 7 courses
Elective: 3 courses
GPA: 3.0 
a C or better in all courses.
Timeline: Complete minimum units/courses within 3 years.

Courses completed more than five years prior to date of certificate issuance cannot be used to fulfill requirements

How to Apply

Certificate applications can be submitted online. Simply click on the "Declare Candidacy" button above. Then, select the "Enroll" button next to the certificate title and follow the instructions.

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What Students Say

Scott Copeland, Technical Writing and Communications

Scott Copeland

"UCSC Extension has the greatest number of tech writing courses in the Bay Area; even more than UC Berkeley."

Read Scott's story...