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This subject teaches the writing and editing skills needed in the technical writing profession. The emphasis is on preparing instructional materials (also known as user documentation), both for printed and online delivery. Students will learn how to plan a documentation project, how to tailor writing for various audiences (local and international), how to write effective procedures, how to build subject-specific thesauri, and how to index and design documents.
Intended learning outcomes
On successful completion of this subject, students should:
- be prepared for the profession of technical writing (also known as technical communication);
- have experienced writing and editing technical documents;
- have acquired an awareness of the global reach of technical writing and of the need to be sensitive to cultural, legal and language differences;
- understand the various moral dimensions in instructional and informational writing, and have gained an appreciation of the importance of minimising information denial, time theft and potential injury; and
- have acquired a framework for appreciating the importance of extending the role of editor to that of collaborative author in the preparation of technical documents
At the completion of this subject, students should gain the following generic skills:
- finely honed skills in writing, and editing, plain, utilitarian, audience-centric instructional materials;
- document design and structuring skills that enhance usability and readability;
- an appreciation of the moral and legal imperatives that drive effective communication in an information-hungry, time-poor and culturally diverse world; and
- skills in template-creation, indexing and thesaurus-building.
Last updated: 3 November 2022