English 313

Instructor: Dr. William D. Klein

Do you think that you can write a user's manual that is better than the manual for the last computer you learned to use?

Have you received compliments on the design and content of the web site you created?

Do you want to be part of the thriving information technology industry?

Business and technology education consists of writing about technology for non-technical audiences. For example, hardware and software user manuals, systems administrator guides, reports to lay or semi-technical readers, general interest articles, grant requests, environmental impact statements, and so forth. To do this type of writing, you have to be able to understand your audience and can assimilate, be able to write clearly, and be a quick learner.

There is a demand for technical writers and it's expected to increase because of the continuing expansion of scientific and tehnical information and the need to communicate it to others. According to the 1998-1999 Occupational Outlook Handbook, published by the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of writers and editors is expected to increase faster than the average for all occupations (that is, increase 21 to 35 percent) through the year 2006. The handbook also says that through 2006, opportunities will be good for technical writers because of the limited number of writers who can handle technical material.

Taking this advance class in business and technical writing should prepare you for a challenging promising career as a writer. Business and Technical Writing will help you to improve on your writing skills. This means the ability to write clearly in standard Aamerican English about a technical or semi- technical subject. In other words, the ability to explain something to a typical reader.

Knowledge and experience using one or more Desktop Publishing (DTP) systems is essential. This class will help you to familiarize yourself with tools such as Photoshop, PageMill, and PowerPoint. You don't have to be an expert with these tools, you should just be able to find and use them when you sit in front of a strange computer.

There are some psychological benefits to a career in business and technical writing over and above attractive wages. These writers generally work in fields that stay interesting, day in and day out. Change is frequent, unavoidable, and usually for the best, as products get cheaper and faster. Technical writers are challenged to stay current with their industry as products, standards, and tools change constantly.

This course will help you to establish yourself as a professional writer. If you are pursuing a degree in graphic design, communication, journalism, language arts, or English-and if you are interested in lifelong learning about science and technology--a career in technical writing might be ideal.



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