High-Impact Technical Writing Course [Updated ]


technical writing course outline

Technical Writing, you may have surmised, is a class you must, at best, endure. On the one hand I sympathize with your plight — I've taken my share of required, gut-it-out, courses. On the other hand, I truly feel that technical writing is an interesting and useful subject. This technical writing course is the best way to get started learning everything you need to know about this exciting and diverse field. Our technical writing course is for you if you want to develop your technical writing abilities or are seeking a professional career as a technical writer. This program is geared towards anyone seeking professional career training in technical writing. Within the program, you will learn research methods, audience considerations, various writing styles, drafting and revision techniques, working in a collaborative environment, and more.

Online Technical Writing from California State University - San Bernardino

Jim Collier. I designed this course to be largely asynchronous. We will not meet at a common time unless we make the necessary arrangements. Most of our communication will occur through email. My email address is jim. I will check my email at least twice a day — in the morning and in technical writing course outline evening. Please give me about 12 hours to respond to your e-mail. Likely my response will come much sooner, technical writing course outline. In addition, please feel free to use the Messages function in Scholar to contact me and your classmates.

I am happy to meet with you either face-to-face, if you are in Blacksburg, or virtually, real-time. We can use Skype. Please consider what mode of communication works best for you, technical writing course outline. I am willing to explore any possibilities you suggest for either asynchronous or synchronous communication. Principles and procedure of technical writing; attention to analyzing audience and purpose, organizing information, technical writing course outline graphic aids, and writing such specialized forms as abstracts, technical writing course outline, instructions, and proposals.

Junior standing required. Let me offer some thoughts about the organization of the course in order to lend some advice for approaching classes and assignments. Technical Writing is a field and a profession with a unique history and distinctive practices. Likely few, if any, of you will become professional technical writers. Still, technical writing course outline, you will become professionals possessing specialized knowledge and information.

To convey your knowledge to diverse audiences in unique settings necessitates that you become accomplished technical communicators, technical writing course outline. As technical communicators you will craft messages using ever changing and increasingly powerful, integrated and convenient media.

Within a digital media environment, writing remains the undeniable focus of this course. Through writing this course will prepare you to communicate knowledge and information through various means to audiences of experts, professionals and laypersons. Online courses demand self-motivation, self-discipline and, perhaps, even greater focus and attention than traditional courses. Given these demands, here are my recommendations for taking the course:. Meet deadlines.

You must meet deadlines. Let me know immediately if personal crises, family emergencies, religious considerations, or severe illnesses need my consideration.

Otherwise, I cannot accept late papers. You have the opportunity to revise any and all formal writing in the course until the final day of the term. Stay in touch with me. Communication in this course will be asynchronous unless you desire an alternative, technical writing course outline.

Please let me know, at any time, if you have questions about any aspect of the class. Silence means assent. Get with Groups. At the beginning of the term, I will put you in groups more about groups follows. I will set up groups and ways for groups to communicate through Scholar. Introduce yourself and get to know and work with your group members as early as possible in the term.

Know What You Want. Technical writing course outline the beginning of the course honestly assess your strengths and weakness as a technical communicator, generally, and a writer, specifically. The course assignments are flexible enough to allow you work on what you need and what you find stimulating. However, if you feel the course does not adequately address your personal and professional concerns, let me know. The course can be tailored to your needs and we can work together on any specific areas of writing and technical communication you desire, technical writing course outline.

Keep Perspective. Consider the relative value of assignments. Do not spend an inordinate amount of time on the informal assignments. Formal writing assignments can be revised until the last day of the term. Get the most you can out of the course but keep your workload reasonable. The best advice I can give is to begin early on formal writing assignments, meet deadlines, and start the term strong by making sure you take care of informal assignments requirements.

If you get informal writing out of the way you will have more time at the end of the term when time is of the essence. Have Fun. I know "fun" is not the first or second notion to leap to mind when you think of technical writing.

Yet this class may be one of the last opportunities you have to creatively and rigorously work on your technical communication skills before your career begins in earnest. Try to work beyond the common wisdom and expectations that result in "gaming" a course to render it easy — and meaningless. A number of fascinating issues lie at the heart of technical communication — the nature of language, technical writing course outline, meaning and reference; the role of persuasion, technical writing course outline, moral reasoning and public deliberation; and the relationship of experts, professionals and the lay public in making decisions about science, technology and society.

These issues, I believe, are fun insofar as they have direct bearing on technical writing course outline shared well-being. The joy of scientific and technical communication is in the challenge, in the puzzlement and in the effort of making meaning. Through the course structure, you have creative latitude in performing the assignments.

Use it. At the beginning of the course, examine closely the course calendar. The calendar is key to getting a sense of the course's rhythm. You should get a clear sense of the progression of course assignments — we move from singular individually authored, documents e. With a few exceptions, I have given the course a constant rhythm. The At a Glance section of the calendar should give you an overall sense of the rhythm of the course.

The reading requirements for the course are manageable — even, if I may dare say, reasonable. Certain days, however, demand a heavy reading load. All of you have developed strategies for dealing with the amount of reading required by courses. You have learned to skim, to read closely certain parts of a text, to review subheadings to get the sense of an argument — steps necessary for you to deal with the rising tide of text-based information you encounter now and will encounter in the future.

In fact, many of you may completely abandon the convoluted prose of your textbooks to locate relevant formulas or illustrations. With respect to the course requirements, let me offer a brief guide:. Looking at the class calendar you will see that I use three verbs in referring to preparation for a given class — 'read', 'review' and 'consult'.

Here, I am signaling an order of priority — what is designated to 'read' is of the greatest importance to that day's tasks; what is designated to 'review' is of less importance, and what is designated to 'consult' is helpful but not required.

You will also see a subheading — Supplemental Resources — for most days on the calendar. Reading or viewing the supplemental resources is not required. Rather, these resources lend context to the course topics and offer ideas for assignments. If you use Mike Markel's book see below as an aid, you will see I peg the recommended reading to the genre we are analyzing and reproducing.

Of course, if you closely read all that is assigned you will take away more from the course. But if you must make choices you can prioritize, and adopt reading strategies, according to the above guide. Peer review, when required, can be performed by a member of your group or by any one that can provide a timely, honest response to your work.

Peer review sheets are available for download online linked to each assignment. On the one hand science is urged on us a model of rational deduction from publicly verifiable facts, freed from the tyranny of unreasoning authority. On the other hand, given the immense extent, inherent complexity, and counterintuitive nature of scientific knowledge, technical writing course outline, it is impossible for anyone, including non-specialist scientists to retrace the intellectual paths that lead to scientific conclusions about nature.

In the end we must trust the experts technical writing course outline they, in turn, exploit their authority as experts and their rhetorical skills to secure our attention and our belief in things that we do not really technical writing course outline. Anyone who has ever served as an expert witness in a judicial proceeding knows that the court may spend an inordinate time "qualifying" an expert, who, technical writing course outline, once qualified, gives testimony that is not meant to be a persuasive argument, but an assertion unchallengeable by anyone except another expert.

And, indeed, what else are the courts to do? If the judge, attorneys, and jury could reason out the technical issues from fundamentals, there would be no need of experts. What is at stake here is a deep problem in democratic self-governance. In Plato's most modern of Dialogues, the Gorgiasthere is a struggle between Technical writing course outline, with whom we are meant to sympathize, and his opponents, Gorgias and Callicles, over the relative virtues of rhetoric and technical expertise.

What Socrates and Gorgias agree on is that the mass of citizens are incompetent to make reasoned decisions on justice and public policy, but that they must be swayed by rhetorical argument or guided by the authority technical writing course outline experts.

Gorgias: 'I mean [by the art of rhetoric] the ability to convince by mean of speech a jury in the court of justice, members of the Council in their Chamber, voters at a technical writing course outline of the Assembly, and any gathering of citizens, whatever it may be. Obviously in every such election the choice ought to fall on the most expert. Conscientious and wholly admirable popularizers of science like Carl Sagan use both rhetoric and expertise to form the mind of masses because they believe, like the Evangelist John, that the truth shall make you free.

But they are wrong. It is not the truth that makes you free. It is your possession of the power to discover the truth. Our dilemma is that we do not know how to provide that power. I will assign a collaborative one grade for the Wiki Article Assignment. While I know well the vagaries of collaborative work, I believe that mass collaboration may well be one future of scientific and technological research and communication.

However, I am mindful that creative and stylistic differences occur.


Business Report Writing Course Outline


technical writing course outline


People who searched for List of Free Online Technical Writing Courses and Training Programs found the following related articles, links, and information useful. This technical writing course is the best way to get started learning everything you need to know about this exciting and diverse field. Our technical writing course is for you if you want to develop your technical writing abilities or are seeking a professional career as a technical writer. Sep 11,  · Technical writing is a relatively new profession, but people have been writing technical documents for centuries. In the first lesson, you will learn the fascinating history of technical writing and how technical writing employs both the logical and creative sides of your brain.