Brooklyn College: Technical Writing Certificate Program
Interested in a career in technical writing? Interested in adding something to that degree in English, History, Philosophy, Communications, Advertising, Marketing that will actually enable you to get a job? Tired of teaching school or working as a secretary? Want to put your language skills to use and do some writing in a respectable and rewarding profession? If so, the Technical Writing Certificate Program offered through Brooklyn College may be just for you!
About the program . . .
The Brooklyn College Technical Writing Certificate Program took in its first students February 1999. It is a small program in which students have plenty of opportunity to interact with instructors. As of February 2009, people from all over the world have registered for and completed over 600 individual sections of the courses that are offered.
The Brooklyn College Technical Writing Certificate Program is an intensive eight-course program that introduces you to the essential areas in the technical communication and technical writing profession. The entire program is online: you can take the courses individually, or you can take some combination of the eight courses and earn the certificate—right in your own home and from anywhere in the world.
What you learn . . .
Each of the eight courses is eight weeks long, and each packs in a lot of writing, a lot of software, and a lot of learning. The courses introduce you to the technical communication profession, common page and book design, hypertext, HTML, web pages, online helps, technical reports, basic graphics techniques, desktop publishing, user guides, instructions, and more. You get valuable experience with essential software tools such as FrameMaker, RoboHELP, Dreamweaver, and other such applications. To get work as a technical writer, you need items like these on your resume and in your portfolio. The Brooklyn College Technical Writing Certificate Program guides you in building an attractive resume and a powerful portfolio that will help you get employment as a technical writer.
Also in the Brooklyn College Technical Writing Certificate Program, you'll learn how to build a resume especially for technical-writing employment, how to start a portfolio that shows off your work in the key software applications employers are looking for, how to find technical-writing jobs, and how to become an active, responsible member of the profession.
How the courses work . . .
In each course, you have a plan of study and projects mapped out for you: you do readings from textbooks or the Web as well as exercises and quizzes to test your learning, and write several projects that your instructor reviews and comments on. Based on your instructor's comments, you then revise and have your instructor review again. See an example of instructors' comment style.
The Brooklyn College technical-writing courses are not for traditional academic credit. They are continuing-education courses. If you are interested in online technical-writing courses for academic credit, see Austin Community College Technical Communications Program.
Find out more about technical writing
To explore the field of technical writing (also called technical communication), visit these sites:
See course details . . .
You can see detailed descriptions of the courses, even the syllabi for the courses (but without the links to the actual study units).
Here are some links to sample units:
Representative student work
Tuition fees and duration
Here are the specifics:
Software expenses and books
Required and recommended books are listed in the course syllabi.
One of the big problems in getting your technical-writing career going is the expense of the software. Employers will have licenses for the software they want you to use, but in the meantime you've got to get access to that software on your own. Here are some of the costs as of June 2007 (but keep reading . . .):
* Recommended but not required; other options can be used.
There are several ways to get around some of these costs:
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for additional information.