Bachelor of Science (B.S.) programs in technical writing may also be called technical communications or technical writing and communication programs. In technical writing programs, students learn to retrieve and evaluate information, respond to audiences, create strategies for revision and editing, work with current technologies and format documents. Some online courses and programs are available. In addition to classroom instruction, students may gain experience through internships.
Applicants typically must hold a high school diploma or GED. Some programs may require students to complete prerequisite courses in computer science and mathematics prior to acceptance into the major.
Bachelor's Degree in Technical Writing
In addition to general education requirements, students complete core courses in English, information literacy, diversity and business ethics. Common course titles found within the technical communications program include:
- Document design
- Technical writing and editing
- Technology and information
- Online documentation
- Graphic communication
- Website design
Popular Career Options
Graduates have the theoretical knowledge and practical skills to design and implement websites, produce printed and multimedia material and write user manuals. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, some graduates may begin their careers as technical researchers (www.bls.gov). Technical writers can find career opportunities in most industries, including technology, publishing, science, management and engineering. Additional job titles available include:
- Information developer
- Documentation designer
- Engineering writer
Continuing Education Information
Students can either seek entry-level employment or pursue further education via a master's degree program in technical communications. Such programs exist on their own or may be offered as a concentration within graduate English programs. In addition to coursework, these programs typically include an internship, thesis or research paper.
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), jobs for technical writers should expand by 10% from 2014-2024, which is faster than the national average for all occupations. The BLS reported the annual median salary for these writers in 2015 was $70,240.
B.S. degree programs in technical writing are designed to teach students the technological and communication skills need to perform the duties of a technical writer. If desired, graduates from these programs can continue their education in master's degree programs in technical communications.