I agree that editors often need subject-matter knowledge for technical documents. But a fresh, beginner's eye can sometimes recognize an issue the technical experts miss, especially when readers or users will not be technical experts.
Like you, I have edited business documents but not technical ones. My experience is limited to what I have seen rather than what I have done. Lynn Gaertner-Johnston October 24, at I agree about the value of business writing classes. Topics such as sentence structure, active voice verbs, and concise language--along with many more--apply to both business writing and technical writing. Chanaka Palliyaguru October 24, at Lynn Gaertner-Johnston October 25, at I don't think these two types of writing are necessarily mutually exclusive.
I often find that in the same document, I use both technical and business writing skills. Liz Tucker November 02, at I am a freshman. Currently, working on my degree in B. After the first homework I've done, I realized that the way I am writing is not relevant to business as itself.
I start looking for help over the Internet to make my writing more closed and appropriate to the matter at hand. Here what I found:. Jeff Simmmons November 23, at Lynn Gaertner-Johnston November 23, at I agree with this article. As a former technical writer I ghostwrite books now who also did some business writing, I found that there might be a tiny bit of marketing babble--as a friend of mine liked to call it--within a technical document, but the audience and purpose for the two kinds of writing tended to be pretty separate.
I agree as well that sound writing principles need to be used with both, so if a business writing course teaches that, it will help technical writers too, even though a business writing course won't cover some of what tech writers do. And lastly, I heartily second the notion that a technical writer doesn't need to know everything about their subject. Well first, that's what SMEs are for. And second, if you know the subject too well, you might be tempted to skip defining or explaining the jargon and acronyms that so often populate technical documentation, especially if the document has a lay end user as its audience.
There's just no replacing a good technical writer with an engineer who can maybe write, in my humble opinion! Jonathan B Williams November 20, at Lynn Gaertner-Johnston November 20, at The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image.
As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments. Having trouble reading this image? Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment. Name is required to post a comment. Please enter a valid email address. Business Writing Talk, tips, and best picks for writers on the job. Syntax Training Lynn Gaertner-Johnston. Subscribe By Email Have the latest posts delivered to your inbox!
Proofreading Checklist to Avoid "Oops! Which Pronoun Is Correct? Add me to your TypePad People list. Julie Hale What makes business writing different from technical writing?
Hi Stephanie, I agree about the value of business writing classes. This is the Entrepreneur Track: This is the traditional way we've been running this course for decades. It is entrepreneurial because it assumes students are interested in starting their own businesses and will be most motivated by writing projects that an entrepreneurial small-business startup would be doing: Here are links for the discussion and examples of these documents: Proposals Progress reports Recommendation and feasibility reports Resumes Application letters Researched reports Sales materials.
Textbook The textbook is free and online:. Be forewarned that this is a writing-intensive course; assignments are due every two weeks in the week semesters, almost every week in the and week semesters, and sometimes two in a week in 6-week summer semesters. For information about the field of technical communication, see http: There are no optional assignments in this course. Furthermore, reading quizzes assignments must be done on time, or it will show in your grade for the related assignments.
If an assignment is late after If you know that a paper is going to be late and have a reason for the lateness, don't remain silent about it. Tell me in advance and I will consider what accommodation to make. If you fall behind in the course and miss more than two consecutive assignments, I may withdraw you from the class but don't count on it. Incompletes will only be granted if you have an emergency and have only the last writing project remaining to complete.
The extensive use of secondary sources is expected in this course. Indeed, it is required. However, you must be very careful not to misuse sources. The general rule is: If you are conscious of borrowing material, whether you are quoting actual words or just summarizing or paraphrasing, you must cite the source of the material, using MLA or style presented in this course.
The penalty for plagiarism: If you plagiarize once and I detect it, the course is over for you; I will give you an F and report your scholastic dishonesty to the ACC authorities. In this course, we care about producing professional-looking documents.
Therefore, assignments will typically have precise style and format requirements. You'll be asked to use a specific format for numbered and bulleted lists, headings, graphics, cross-references, citation of borrowed information, notices like cautions, warnings, or dangers , and so on.
Toward the beginning of the semester, you write a proposal in which you propose to write a technical report for a real or realistic audience and situation. Your technical report described in the proposal must match the technical report you hand in. You are strongly encouraged to send a preliminary draft of your report so that I can give you some general ideas on how it is shaping up. If you read carefully, you'll see that the abstracts are a component embedded in the final report, but they get a separate grade.
Therefore, you'll see two grades on your final report. In writing assignments for this course, write for the nonspecialist audience.
This is more interesting and challenging for everybody concerned. If this is a problem, contact me. Real or realistic contexts.
English classes in business and technical writing will teach you how to create documents for the work world. What courses are available? Business Writing (English ) English will teach you how to analyze and produce typical office documents, such as letters, memoranda, presentations, proposals, and reports.
While academic writing and business and technical writing share the common tenet of all writing—convey the message in a way the reader can understand—academic writing is part of an ongoing conversation about a body of knowledge. Business and technical writing are part of a conversation that may or may not be ongoing.
The intent of both technical writing and business writing is to provide information that leads to a desired outcome. This intent creates similarities: stylistically, both use concise and specific language. In addition, the use of bulleted and numbered lists to organize information is common in both business and technical writing. Even in an age of video and multi-media, flawless writing is still essential and key to success in technical and business communications. Learn the top 12 power .
Technical & Business Writing: Course Description & Objectives ENGL Technical and Business Writing: Principles, techniques, and skills needed to conduct scientific, technical, or business writing. Top 10 Components of Style Guide in Technical Writing - Duration: 7 minutes, 17 seconds.