This online course will help you locate and document sources for writing projects as well as to increase efficiency and consistency in your writing. At the end of this course you will apply what you have learned by writing a formal technical report.
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The program is delivered online with instructor interaction via LMS and Email.
This is a Career Builder Certificate Course of Study for students serious about advancing their career in the field of Technical Communication.
This certificate program consists of the following three courses:
1. Technical Communication: The Profession, Writing Style, and Format
2. Technical Reports for Industry, Government, and Business
3. User Documentation for Technology Products
The first course in this sequence is designed to prepare you for the remainder of the program.
You will study style and format for industry, government, and business documents, review strategies for finding information for writing projects and learn methods for documenting those sources. The main focus of this course will be to learn and practice task orientation which is critical to good user-oriented documents.
The synopsis for each of the three course modules can be found below.
Technical Communication: The Profession, Writing Style, and Format
In this course we begin with a thorough refresher bootcamp in grammar, usage, and punctuation and then study style and format for industry, government, and business documents (such as headings, vertical lists, warning notices, highlighting, tables, graphics), technical terminology, and wordiness problems. During this course you will correct documents containing the kinds of problems you are studying and read and take quizzes on The Insider's Guide to Technical Writing. To conclude this course, students do a major overhaul on a technical report and on a user guide.
Technical Reports for Industry, Government, and Business
In this course, you begin by learning strategies for finding information sources for writing projects and methods for documenting those sources. From here, you will continue by practicing using character and paragraph styles to increase efficiency and consistency, reviewing how to create traditional outlines and tables of contents, and using templates for format reports. There will be readings along the way and quizzes on the Chicago Manual of Style. Following this fundamental preparation, you will practice writing brief technical documents on science or technology topics. To conclude this course, you will apply all that you have learned by writing a formal technical report on a new technology, environmental issue, or scientific discovery.
User Documentation for Technology Products
Students begin this course by studying task orientation which is a critical component to writing good user-oriented documents. You will learn about writing style common in user documentation (especially the passive voice). The course continues with the students practice of writing two sets of instructions (the second of which you create and apply a template with customized character and paragraph styles). You will follow this project by creating a properly formatted standard operating procedure (SOP). As in the other courses you will read and take quizzes on Read Me First! A Style Guide for the Computer Industry, by Sun Technical Publications. The course of study concludes by teaching you how to study and analyze the design of user guides, and thus create a practical user guide of your own authorship.
Things to consider:
1. Be prepared to invest 6-8 hours a week in your studies for 3 months.
2. Course of study can be accelerated with instructor permission.
3. Customized comprehensive content developed to engage you with one single instructor from start to finish.
4. Three Courses blended into one succinct body of knowledge.
5. Independent and self-paced study.
6. Instructor guidance and feedback.
Please note that this comprehensive course of study may be completed earlier than indicated dependent on arrangement between the instructor and student.
Certificates are only issued upon successful course completion of all required work.
Who should attend
Communication Professionals, Technical Writers/Communicators, Information Specialists, Business Analysts, Research Report Writers, and Engineers
David McMurrey has a Ph.D. in comparative literature from Univ. of Texas and has been teaching technical writing since 1978. He has published three textbooks on writing and technical writing, worked 11 years as writer/editor for IBM in new products areas and is full-time faculty at Austin Community College. David has taught for JER Online since 1999 and currently teaching Intermediate Technical Writing and Business and Technical Writing.
*Listing of sponsors does not represent endorsement by UW-Eau Claire Continuing Education/Extension.