Technical Writing

Technical Writing Extension Certificate

Classroom and Online
Please note: Beginning Fall 2016, all required courses will only be offered online.

Schedule | Required Courses | Optional Courses | Course Materials | Instructor Biographies | Student Testimonials | Register | Job and Volunteer Opportunities | Contact Us

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The Technical Writing program is a recognized member of the Society of Technical Communication (STC).
Students! Learn more about STC events.

 

 

  • Prepare to enter the field of technical writing for science, technology, education, oil and gas, business communications, web-based publishing, freelance writing and editing, and more
  • Advance your technical writing knowledge and skills
  • Earn a credential
Develop highly sought-after technical writing skills using the latest tools, methods and key software programs.
  • Complete the 10 required courses plus 22.5 hours of optional courses (172.5 hours)
  • Can be completed within 1 year up to a maximum of 3 years

Requirements

  • A grade 12 level of proficiency in written and spoken English and strong intermediate skills in MS Word and Windows are strongly recommended requirements.
  • Please bring a 4GB USB memory stick to class as some classes will be held in a computer lab.
  • We strongly recommend completion of Foundations of Technical Communication and Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors before beginning other courses in the certificate.
  • Some required courses may require assignments to be submitted within 1 week after the course has finished. 
TECHNICAL WRITING SCHEDULE
Required Courses
Recommended Order
Winter '17
(Jan.-Apr.)
Spring'17
(May-Jun.)
Fall '17
(Sept. - Dec. )
Foundations of Technical Communication
Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors
Document Layout and Design 
Writing User Guides 
Preparing Policies and Procedures 
Editing Basics for Technical Documents
Producing Software Specifications
Site Architecture for Online Media
Design and Authoring for Online Media 
Documentation Project Management
Optional Courses (choose 22.5 hours)   
Grammar and  Punctuation Essentials
Writing and Editing for Digital Media
Creating Training Materials  
Effective Business Writing
The above schedule is subject to change. Courses start on various dates within each semester.
Fall schedule and registration available in June. Winter schedule and registration available in November. Spring/Summer schedule and registration available in March.

 Required Courses

Foundations of Technical Communication
Explore the discipline of technical writing and enhance your writing techniques to meet the demands of today’s marketplace. Study the concepts involved in technical writing, including audience analysis, document organization, and grammar and writing skills to create clear, concise, correct and cohesive communications. Apply these through practical exercises. 
Recommended co-requisite: Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors

Subject code: XTBW 10004 18 Hours. Fee: $429  Choose 1 of the CRNs below
CRN 30398
Online Jan. 16 - Feb. 13    
CRN 30488 Online Feb. 27 - Mar. 27    

Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors
Develop intermediate skills to create professional looking documents.  Learn how to use features and templates to create and format documents with more complex layouts, including styles, tables, pictures and objects, columns, numbering, headers and footers, tables of contents and templates.
Recommended co-requisite: Foundations of Technical Communication
Strongly recommended: Microsoft Word Levels 1 and 2 (available here)

Subject code: XWOP 10011 15 Hours. Fee: $289  Choose 1 of the CRN's below
CRN 30979 Online Feb. 14 - Mar. 67    
CRN 30980 Online Mar. 27 - April. 18    

Document Layout and Design
Discover how the principles of page layout, typography and design can help you produce effective and readable technical documents. Put these principles into practice by designing technical documents using MS Word.
Prerequisites: Foundations of Technical Communication and Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors
Required textbook: The Non-Designers Design Book (4th Edition), Robin Williams, Peachpit Press (a division of Pearson Education). Available at the BookStore.

Subject code: XTBW 10022 15 Hours. $409
 CRN 30218
 Online Jan. 16 -  Feb. 6    

Writing User Guides
Design and prepare effective user guides that enable the reader to successfully operate a product. As well, study and follow through the process of guide and manual creation using MS Word, including task and audience analysis, documentation standards, instruction writing and information organization.
Prerequisites: Foundations of Technical Communication and Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors

Subject code: XTBW 10016 15 Hours. Fee: $409 Not offered this semester

Preparing Policies and Procedures
Preparing effective policies and procedures has become a major focus for technical writers as quality standards like ISO 9000 emphasize their role in developing quality products and services. Examine the essential ingredients of policies and procedures and practice using these to prepare effective policies and procedures using MS Word. Prerequisites: Foundations of Technical communication and Advanced Word for Writers
Required textbook: 7 Steps to Better Written Policies and Procedures, Steve Page. Available at the BookStore or Amazon. PDF format is only available on author's website (approx. $16.)

Subject code: XTBW 10017 15 Hours. Fee: $409  
CRN30486 Online Jan. 23 -  Feb. 13    

Editing Basics for Technical Documents
Editing is a vital step in creating professional, accurate and usable technical documentation. Discuss the role of the editor and the editing process, as well as examining the types of edits that documents can undergo. Practice various edit types through hands-on exercises.
Prerequisites: Foundations of Technical Communication and Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors

Subject code: XTBW 10023 15 Hours. Fee: $409  
 CRN 30198  Online  Feb. 13 - Mar. 6    

Producing Software Specifications
Functional requirements and design specifications are vital to any development or manufacturing project. Explore the role these and other technical documents play in developing a software product, and discover the elements they must have to describe a product properly using UseCases and other specification documents. Prepare representative documents using MS Word.
Prerequisites:
Foundations of Technical Communication and Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors

Subject code: XTBW 10024 15 Hours. Fee: $409
 
CRN 30917 Online Apr. 3 - Apr. 24    

Site Architecture for Online Media
Information websites, online help and Intranets are prevalent in the business and technology world. Review the benefits and challenges, and examine and practice the skills necessary to design sites that are well organized and easy to navigate. Apply these skills while developing an information site using a combination of XHTML, Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) and a Content Management System.
Prerequisites:
Foundations of Technical Communication and Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors

Subject code: XTBW 10025 15 Hours. Fee: $409  
CRN30487 Online Mar. 6 - Mar. 27    

Design and Authoring Online Media
Discover how to author pages that are organized, readable, easily comprehended and credible. Apply these skills while authoring pages using a combination of XHTML, Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) within a managed environment. Information websites, online help and Intranets are prevalent in the business and technology world. Review the benefits and challenges, and examine and practice the skills necessary to author pages. 
Prerequisites: Foundations of Technical Communication and Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors

Subject code: XTBW 10026 15 Hours. Fee: $409  
CRN 30165
Online Mar. 13 - Apr. 3    

Document Project Management
Learn techniques for managing documentation projects, including the four stages of project management;  initiating and planning, developing and executing, monitoring and controlling, and closing the project. This course will also explore the relationship between the technical writer and the subject matter expert.
Prerequisites:
Foundations of Technical Communication and Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors

Subject code: XTBW 10032 12 Hours. Fee: $359  
CRN 30489 Online Apr. 3 - Apr. 24    

Optional Courses

Choose 22.5 hours

We strongly recommend completion of Foundations of Technical Communication and Advanced Microsoft Word for Writers and Editors before beginning any optional courses. 


Creating Training Materials
Learn to design and prepare effective training materials for a variety of training situations. Study the process of creating training materials using MS Word, including task and audience analysis, documentation standards, teaching roles, learning sequences and evaluation techniques. 

Subject code: XTBW 10028 7.5 Hours. Fee: $249            
Not offered this semester

Effective Business Writing
Are your writing skills holding back your career because you struggle to express yourself clearly, concisely and efficiently? Review and apply the principles of effective writing and revising. Learn how to create powerful workplace documents including emails, letters and reports that achieve the results you want. Review the basic design principles and survey professional editing techniques.
Textbook (required): HBR Guide to Better Business Writing, Bryan A. Garner, available at the BookStore.

Subject code: XTBW 10013 15 Hours. Fee: $409  Choose 1 of the CRN's below
CRN 30167 Online Feb. 13 - Mar. 6    
CRN 30166 2 classes Mar. 10 - 17 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. Fri.

Writing and Editing for Digital Media
The rapid growth and evolution of digital media has presented tremendous opportunities and new challenges for writers and editors. Be introduced to principles, strategies and techniques for writing and editing relevant, compelling content for various digital media platforms.

Subject code: XCOM 20010 15 Hours. Fee: $409  
CRN 30510 Online Feb. 27 - Mar. 20    

Grammar and Punctuation Essentials
Brush up on basic writing skills. Review parts of speech, grammar and common grammatical mistakes. Explore sentence parts including words, phrases and clauses. Understand punctuation and common punctuation mistakes such as capitalization, abbreviations and numbers. Discuss commonly misused and misspelled words.

Required textbook: Practical Grammar: A Canadian Writer's Resource ( 3rd Edition) , Maxine Ruvinkey, Oxford University Press, 2014. Available at the BookStore.

Subject code: XCOM 20008 15 Hours. Fee: $339  Choose 1 of the CRN's below
CRN 30383
3  classes Jan. 21 - Feb. 49 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Sat.
CRN 30908 3 classes Mar. 25 - Apr. 8 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m Sat.

Course Materials

Once registered, you will access your course materials online. You will gain access to the Blackboard class website within 4 working days before the start date of the course. At that time, you will receive a welcome e-mail with instructions on how to log in. Please provide a current e-mail address when you register.

Once you have downloaded your course materials, please bring them to class on a laptop, iPad or other tablet, or a printed paper copy.

Type your expanded text here. May include tables and images. 

CE Icon - PDF  Technical Writing Program Guide-Classroom Delivery

Technical Writing Program Guide-Online Delivery 

CE Icon - Read Article  Article about the Technical Writing program

Student Testimonials

“I liked the exercises a lot. They really help drive home the ideas.”-Foundations of Technical Communication student

“Very practical, relevant and up to date information, good to learn what employers want and how to market myself.”-Portfolios for Technical Writers student

“Clarified exactly what policies and procedures should accomplish, applicable to my current job."-Preparing Policies and Procedures student

“Very useful information, 'hands-on' learning all day long. It's exactly what I wanted to learn.”-Preparing Policies and Procedures student

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Contact us

For information about this program:
cebusiness@mtroyal.ca
403.440.6013 or 1.888.392.3655
Mount Royal University, 4825 Mount Royal Gate SW, Calgary AB   T3E 6K6

Customize this program for your organization through our Corporate Training department.

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