If you are looking for a technical writing career, then you have come the right place. Below, you will find a list of the best online degrees and certificates that can launch you onto the right foot path to an exciting new career in technical writing.
A Bachelor of Science in Technical Writing will not only give you the tools to become a successful technical writer, but it will also prepare you for a variety of graduate level technical jobs. Students can choose between a traditional Bachelor of Science in Technical Writing or a Bachelor of Science in Technical Communication which focuses more on written and verbal communication respectively. Both degrees prepare you for a career in technical writing, but if you have a specific area of interest, then focus on the minor.
A typical Bachelor of Science in Technical Writing program will cover topics such as:
- English composition
- Technical subject area (hardware, software, etc.)
- Business continuity
- Project management
- Ethical hacking
- Security analysis
The next step up the ladder for most students is the Master of Science in Technical Writing. This degree will give you the opportunity to delve even deeper into the field and specialize in a particular area of interest. Students can further their education by taking advantage of the extensive online library available through their department of technical writing to conduct research on any topic.
After you complete your Master of Science in Technical Writing, you can look for jobs in a variety of industries including:
- Software engineering
- Healthcare administration
- Legal research
- Human resources
- Project management
- Quality assurance
- Technical writing (job description)
- Business process reengineering
- Operations research
- Strategic management
- Systems engineering
- Information security
- Forensic science
- Compliance management
- Project/program management
- Performance management
- Quality management
For students who want to specialize in a particular area of technical writing, there are certificates available to gain valuable experience. For example, the Certified Technical Journalist certificate from the Association for Technical Education is a good choice for students who want to become a technical journalist. This certificate is not only good for the initial job search, but it is also valuable in establishing your credibility as a journalist who is knowledgeable in the field.
Most technical writing students will not need a certificate to get started in their field. However, experienced students might consider this option to further their education or develop specialized skills. Certificate programs will include such things as:
- Career services
- Oral interviews
- Employability skills
- Business ethics
- Technical writing (actual job duties)
- Marketing communications (including marketing strategies, written and verbal)
- Grammar and spelling
- Research and analysis (including library search, citation, and analysis)
- Presentation skills (e.g. Power Point)
Which One Should You Choose?
If you are looking towards a career in technical writing, then you should consider what type of program would suit you best. If you are looking to further your education, then a Master of Science in Technical Writing will give you the opportunity to do so. If you are looking for a certificate program, then choose one that suits your interests. When choosing your program of study, be sure to consider the format (e.g. online or campus based), the location (e.g. domestic or international), and the duration of the program.