The Big Chill: Seven Technical Communicators Talk Ten Years After Their Master’s Program

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Abstract:

This article begins with the voices of seven professionals who graduated from an MA program in technical communication 10 years ago. We asked these professionals to engage in a listserv conversation so that we could gain a better understanding of their experiences entering the technical communication field and the ways in which their perceptions of the profession and roles within the profession have changed.

This interactive autoethnography provides useful information regarding the ways in which academic preparation does and does not prepare students for workplace realities. It also explores the variety of roles technical communicators are expected to assume and the ways in which different industries and coworkers do and do not appreciate these roles, with attention to the resulting consequences. Through the frank examples the listserv participants offer, we come to understand the challenges technical communicators often face and realize the importance of relying on clear communication practices to address these challenges.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: May 1, 2003

More about this publication?
  • Technical Communication, the Society's journal, publishes articles about the practical application of technical communication theory and serves as a common arena for discussion by practitioners. Technical Communication includes both quantitative and qualitative research while showcasing the work of some of the field's most noteworthy writers. Among its most popular features are the helpful book reviews. Technical Communication is published quarterly and is free with membership.
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