English
4780

Technical Writing

Spring
2017

 

Workplace readings

Week 1

Where the field has been and where it is going

Comments

These two articles are both editorials written in Technical Communication. Together they help to set up what the practical technical communication world currently looks like. And it's probably not what you are imagining....it's not sitting in a cubical with your head down and writing.

Readings

The Future of Technical Writing and Editing

Developments in Technical Communication: Journal Articles Between 2006 and 2010

Voice

 

Interview with Karen Schriver

Comments

Karen Schriver has a long history with the field of TC. This interview provides both some history and how she imagines the field will change.

Readings

Schriver interview

Voice

 

Structuring the writing

Comments

Structured writing, topic-based writing, and using single source development are where the professional field is currently at. If you work in a company with more than one writer, you can expect to meet up with these ideas.

Next week, the readings look at them in more detail.

Readings

The three musketters of technical content

Voice

 

Week 2

Single sourcing

Comments

Single sourcing is both a concept of (1) writing once and using in many places and (2) the content management system used to support that write once model.

The goal of single sourcing is to create content  once and deliver it in a variety of ways and to do so in a simple, accurate, quick and  affordable manner. Documents need to be delivered in various formats and to a wide  range of readers.

Readings

Five principles of single sourcing

Voice

 

Topic-based writing

Comments

If you are going to single source, then each element you write must be topic-based and self-contained.

That is much more difficult than it seems. You either fight to get interconnectins or the text sounds like a bunch of paragraphs stuck together.

Readings

Getting started with topic-based writing

Misconceptions about Topic-Based Authoring

Voice

 

Information architecture

Comments

Information architecture deals with the overall structure of the information. It is often protrayed as a "how all the information in a web-site is structured" but it really looks at any large scale information organization.

Readings

Information architecture podcast

Strategic Information Architecture
Voice

 

 

Design by Michael J. Albers Copyright 2016. All rights reserved.
Send me an email.