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Technical Writer Colleges and Schools in the U.S.

Technical writers put technical information into a logical, easy-to-understand format for businesses related to information technology. Usability studies, project management and team leadership are also a part of their responsibilities. Certificate, bachelor's degree and master's degree programs are available in the technical writing specialty.

Selecting a Technical Writing School

When selecting a school for technical writing, a candidate should consider the level of education they wish to achieve, curriculum offered by the school and career outlook after graduation.

A certificate in professional writing program develops and improves skills vital for advancement in a writer's career. Several are offered entirely online and completed in a shorter time frame to accommodate the working professional. Some of the courses of study include writing, editing and design with a combination of theory and practice for real-life experience.

A bachelor's degree program generally requires general education credits, along with a high concentration in English and communications. Both a technical writing minor in undergraduate studies, or an English major with a technical writing concentration, are offered by many schools and desirable in the industry. Curriculum may include courses in rhetoric and composition, effective technical writing and basic English composition. Some colleges also offer essay contests with awards.

Graduate degree programs are available for those who already hold a bachelor's degree in a variety of backgrounds, such as computer science or psychology. Students may study ethics, computer documentation, science rhetoric, persuasive writing, visual design, technical editing and international communication. Internships and a thesis are a common part of master's degree programs in technical writing. Many schools offer their students job placement, resume development and career coaching after graduation.

Technical writers earned a median income of $61,620 and held about 48,900 jobs in 2008, reported the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov). Employment is expected to grow 18% from 2008 to 2018, faster than the average for all occupations.

Largest Colleges and Schools by Student Enrollment

College/University Student Population Institution Type
University of Central Florida50,1214-year, Public
Michigan State University46,5104-year, Public
Pennsylvania State University - Main Campus44,4064-year, Public
University of Washington - Seattle Campus39,6754-year, Public
University of North Texas34,8304-year, Public
North Carolina State University at Raleigh32,8724-year, Public
George Mason University30,6134-year, Public
San Francisco State University30,0144-year, Public
Texas State University - San Marcos29,1054-year, Public
West Virginia University28,8404-year, Public
Texas Tech University28,4224-year, Public
The University of Texas at San Antonio28,4134-year, Public
East Carolina University27,6774-year, Public
Iowa State University26,8564-year, Public
Northeastern University25,8374-year, Private not-for-profit
Washington State University25,3524-year, Public
Auburn University - Main Campus24,5304-year, Public
University of Akron - Main Campus24,1194-year, Public
Northern Arizona University22,5024-year, Public

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