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Professional, Technical, Business, and Scientific Writing

Program Description

Just the Facts

Professional, Technical, Business, and Scientific Writing. A program that focuses on professional, technical, business, and scientific writing; and that prepares individuals for academic positions or for professional careers as writers, editors, researchers, and related careers in business, government, non-profits, and the professions. Includes instruction in theories of rhetoric, writing, and digital literacy; document design, production, and management; visual rhetoric and multimedia composition; documentation development; usability testing; web writing; and publishing in print and electronic media.

This program is available in these options:

  • Certificate / Diploma
  • Associate degree
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Graduate Certificate
  • Master's degree
  • Doctoral degree

High School Courses

See the high school courses recommended for programs in this career cluster:

See the high school courses recommended for programs in this pathway:

Related Careers

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Additional Information

You need a love for communicating, writing, learning and teaching to succeed in a technical writing program.

Technical writing programs are offered at many levels, from certificates to master's degrees. Certificate programs are great for people with technical experience who want to improve their writing, or people with writing skills who want to adapt them to technology. But if you're young and lacking in related experience, you may want to go for a full degree.

In the U.S., technical writing programs are typically offered by a school's department of communications, journalism, English or computer science. These programs offer students the option of a bachelor's or master's degree with a specialization in technical writing.

Many technical writing programs cross over into several departments. At Texas Tech University in Lubbock, students take math, history, the sciences, engineering, business and the humanities.

"Our dean referred to our degree as 'technical humanities,'" explains Carolyn Rude, director of technical communication at Texas Tech.

Graduates can expect to be very marketable in the technical writing field. They will possess problem-solving skills, computer skills, web publishing, business management and economics skills.

The University of Minnesota at Madison provides its students with laptops, computers and software. "Each student has a laptop, software and constant access to LAN and WWW, and they use it to the fullest," says Traci Kelly. She manages the scientific and technical communication program.

Most programs require students to get practical experience through an internship or co-op program. Some internships also can become full-time jobs after graduation.

High school students can get writing experience by writing for the school or community newspaper or yearbook.

"School newspaper or yearbook, debate team and volunteer activities that may require writing or website development would all be excellent," says Rude.

"A technology club or volunteer work helping organizations use technology would also be terrific."

"Students will excel if they take literature, debate, any math, psychology [and] all sciences. The good grammar skills that come from a student who really wants to succeed are essential," says Kelly.


Occupational Outlook Handbook
For more information related to this field of study, see: Writers and Editors

Technical Literacy Project
Read up on a program designed to expose youth to technical writing

Writer's Resource Center
Articles, resources and agencies


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