Tag Archives: technical communication

My digital workflow as a Master’s and PhD #Techcomm student

This post is a long time coming. I began compiling a list of the technologies I used and how I implemented them while in my Master’s of Technical Communications program last year.

First my thesis took all my time and I was unable to make many blog posts and then just as quick I was accepted into and began a PhD in Technical Communication & Rhetoric. I had planned to write a blog post about why I chose to pursue the PhD (and the end of the previous sentence is a perfect place to hyperlink to it). However, as the next semester begins for many (including me), I thought it would be more useful to post the digital workflow that helped me earn my Master’s with a 4.0, be accepted into a PhD program, and earn an A in my first PhD course.

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Filed under How-to, Social Media, Technical Writing

Article Review: “The Textualizing Functions of Writing for Organizational Change”

Anderson, Donald L. 2004. “The Textualizing Functions of Writing for Organizational Change.” Journal of Business and Technical Communication 18 (2) (April 1): 141–164.

Contents:
Logic, organization, and argumentation strategies
Are the claims logical interpretations of the data?
Significance to the field of technical communication

This research paper combines a literature review with an ethnographic study to examine “how change is accomplished through language” (Anderson 2004, 142).

Anderson introduces his two research questions at the end of the introduction and literature review and immediately preceding the methodology section. The rest of the paper is the presentation of the study results along with concurrent analysis.

The Anderson’s conclusion (and theoretical perspective) is that an idea, or series of ideas—whether it’s from meetings, voicemails, IMs, etc.—can’t effect change unless they are “textualized”, written down or otherwise transformed into an “object”; this object is the agent that allows change to occur.

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Filed under Article Reviews, Rhetoric, Technical Writing

Reflections on Finishing a Technical Communication Graduate Program

As I reach the end of my time at Minnesota State University, Mankato, I can look back and say that I made the right choice to pursue the Master of Arts, Technical Communication (MATC) degree.

Before my penultimate semester in the program, I pondered whether the graduate technical communication program I chose was the correct option for me. Once again, I want to take some time to reflect on the choices I made, the experiences I’ve gained, and what I’ve learned along the way as I finish my thesis and complete the program.

*** To read the full article, see the Spring 2013 issue of Techniques, pages 1-5, 7.

Summary of contents:

  • Applying theory to practice — the “practice” versus “theory” debate
  • Master of Arts degree is synonomous with “adaptable”
  • How to benefit from networking as a technical communication graduate student and technical writer
  • How an online graduate degree prepares you training, working, and teaching
  • Technical Communication is a Multidisciplinary Field
  • Minnesota State University, Mankato, fulfilled my goals for a master’s degree in technical communication

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Choosing a Technical Communication Graduate Program

As I enter the penultimate semester of my graduate degree program, I wanted to reflect on whether the program I chose is still the correct option for me. This reflection, coupled with answering questions and watching a coworker embark on a similar graduate school selection process, has prompted me to document the research I performed that helped me to choose a graduate program as a technical communicator.

This is an important distinction to make—I wrote “as a technical communicator” and not “in technical communication.” A lesson I have learned is Continue reading

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