Jun 24, 2024  
2015-2016 Undergraduate Academic Catalog 
2015-2016 Undergraduate Academic Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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TC 3320 - Professional Technical Writing

3 lecture hours 2 lab hours 4 credits
Course Description
This course gives the student practical experience in developing and preparing technical documentation. Discussions emphasize the importance of knowing your audience and writing efficient documentation. Students learn and experience first-hand the technical documentation process preparing them for the tasks for which they will be responsible in their careers. The major requirement for this course is researching, writing and producing a user manual. The manual will be of a quality that it can be used as part of the students’ portfolios. In addition, students are responsible for a number of technical writing assignments leading up to the completion of the user manual. These include, but are not limited to, a user analysis, documentation plan, and style guide. (prereq: GS 1002  or TC 1111  and Junior standing)
Course Learning Outcomes
Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  • Be familiar with the process involved in the creation and production of a user manual
  • Conduct a task analysis in regards to user documentation and other types of written instructions
  • Plan and design a user manual
  • Create and prepare marketing support materials
  • Meet deadlines while working on multiple projects
  • Edit documents for style and content
  • Work effectively in group situations
  • Gain experience dealing with subject matter experts
  • Effectively conduct oral presentations
  • Become familiar with professional journals and organizations

Prerequisites by Topic
  • Technical writing skills
  • Fundamentals of page layout and design
  • Organizational skills

Course Topics
  • Course overview and group project definition (2 classes)
  • Introduction to group writing (1 class)
  • Group project description and selection (3 classes)
  • Group communications (3 classes)
  • Planning stages of the user manual (4 classes)
  • Organizational strategies used for manuals including task analysis (3 classes)
  • Formatting and layout of the manual (3 classes)
  • Drafting the document (3 classes)
  • Editing and document review (3 classes)
  • Producing the manual (3 classes)
  • Oral presentation skill development (2 classes)

Dianne Bender

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