An introduction to the profession for beginners and newcomers, this course will help you determine how your skills fit the field of technical communication. In the first half of the course, you will explore the profession:
- Learn about the top 10 indicators of success
- Take a quick look back at 2,000 years of technical communication
- Examine the roles of technical communicators today
Through exercises, problem solving, case studies, and lecture, participants discover the roles that technical communicators play in work settings such as Fortune 500 industries, start-ups and government labs, as well as freelance consulting.
In the second half of the workshop, you will explore the process by which technical communicators accomplish their work, including information design and development processes, in particular user-centered processes. Through in-class exercises, discussions, and lectures, participants discover how the work of a technical communicator fits into a product life cycle or research cycle. Broadly experiencing the entire process, you will practice interviewing subject-matter experts and users, define the pieces of an information set, and measure the work. After successfully completing this course, participants should be able to identify key roles, tasks, tools, and career paths for a technical communicator; identify job types, locations, and skills that fit their interests; write parts of typical documentation; describe the way that technical communication fits into the larger organization; list a dozen tasks a technical communicator typically performs; and list the phases of a user-centered-product or information-design-and-development process.