Formal instruction in technical and business writing, often known as professional writing, can help students achieve mastery in editing, researching and writing for instructional manuals and websites. There are both undergraduate and graduate-level programs in which students can learn how to convey high-level, scientific and technical information to non-technical readers.
Highlighted below are four outstanding schools for aspiring technical and business writers. Each school has earned high rankings from U.S. News & World Report and/or The Princeton Review for 2017.
Arizona State University in Mesa
|School Highlight: Arizona State tied at 129th in U.S. News & World Report's 2017 ranking of top national universities.|
For 2017, ASU was on the list of Colleges That Create Futures from The Princeton Review. ASU offers a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Technical Communication through its School of Letters and Sciences. The program, which is the only undergraduate degree program in technical communication offered in Arizona, is housed on ASU's Polytechnic campus.
Michigan State University in East Lansing
|School Highlight: The school offers more than 200 programs of undergraduate, graduate and professional study.|
In 2017, Michigan State University (MSU) tied at 82nd in U.S. News & World Report's list of best national universities. The Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) program in professional writing is offered through the College of Arts and Letters. Once enrolled, students learn about advanced technical and digital writing, while honing their skills in editing and publishing. Courses might include topics in digital or visual rhetoric, professional and technical writing or Web authoring.
University of North Texas in Denton
|School Highlight: As of 2017, North Texas was designated one of America's Top 50 Green Colleges by The Princeton Review.|
The University of North Texas (UNT) was designated as a best western college by The Princeton Review in 2017. UNT offers a professional and technical communication major for undergraduates within its College of Arts and Sciences. This program focuses on communicating scientific and technical information, setting it apart from a broad communications major. UNT also offers a graduate degree in technical communications.
Boise State University in Boise, ID
|School Highlight: There are multiple degree and certificate programs available at Boise State University, which are offered through the school's English department.|
At Boise State, students can earn a Bachelor of Arts in English with a Technical Communications Emphasis, an undergraduate certificate in Technical Communication, a Master of Arts in Technical Communication or a graduate certificate in Technical Communication. In these programs, students develop their written and oral communication skills, and they gain familiarity with emerging industry technologies like XML and single sourcing. Many courses are offered in alternative formats, such as in the evening or in online or hybrid formats. For 2017, Boise State was ranked a tier 2 national university by U.S. News & World Report, and its online graduate education programs were tied at #53.
Top Technical and Business Writing Programs
These universities also offer great technical and business writing programs:
- Iowa State University in Ames, IA, offers a B.S. in Technical Communication.
- James Madison University in Harrisonburg, VA, offers B.A., B.S., Master of Arts and Master of Science programs in writing, rhetoric and technical communication.
- Northeastern University in Boston, MA, offers an online master's program in technical communication.
- Texas Tech University in Lubbock, TX, offers a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Technical Communication and Rhetoric, available both on-campus and online.
- At Weber State University in Ogden, UT, undergraduates in the professional and technical writing program can submit research papers to the Perspectives on Undergraduate Research and Mentoring journal.
Some of the best technical and business writing programs in the country are available at well-regarded universities around the country. Many of these programs provide instruction in the field within broader communications-related programs.