Tips to Improve your Technical Writing

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Technical Writing

Whether writing a book, an article or a journal, writers want to improve on their skills. Writing can be of various forms but each of them demands a different approach for the improvement. technical writing deals with translating complex instructions into understandable text. As a form of writing, it has a set procedure. Unlike creative writing, the writer does not get the liberty to personalize and involve in it. Widely seen in Engineering books, press releases and reports, the form of writing has diverse applications.

What is Technical Writing?

A type of writing that deals with understanding technical information about a particular subject and then recording it in a document to make it available for the audience. Widely used in technical fields like Computer Science, Biotechnology, Robotics, Engineering, Finance etc. the genre of writing employs writing techniques to make the text easily understandable to the public. The purpose of this form of writing varies greatly from other forms like creative writing, business writing and academic writing. The fields that involve instructions and explanations hugely rely on this form of writing. It involves writing reviews, reports, newsletters, brochures, proposals, press releases, handbooks, style guides, agendas etc.  

How is Technical Writing Different From Business Writing?

The new term starts to sound a lot like a business writing definition. A business writer, on the other hand, specializes in business plans, case studies, e-books, and sales/marketing collateral. They are gurus in the fields of strategy and business management. Technical writers, on the other hand, have a solid background in science, engineering, or information technology. They’re in charge of compiling technical documentation including instruction manuals and other instructional materials, guidebooks, technical product descriptions, and research reports, among other things.

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What is The Job Of A Technical Writer?

The duties of a technical writer vary based on the industry and firm in which they work. They frequently work in heterogeneous teams, acting as a liaison between technical workers and non-technical readers. They will build a communications plan in collaboration with these teams. Their duties frequently extend beyond only writing. They must comprehend the whole project, from high-level objectives to execution details.

Types Of Technical Writing

Check out below for a quick overview of the many sorts of technical writing:

  • End-User Manuals and Assistance Guides
  • Medical and Scientific Papers
  • Technical Documentation
  • Technical Reports
  • Technical Marketing Communications, like emails
  • Technical Corporate Reports
  • Feasibility Studies
  • White Papers
  • Research Results
  • Memos

Skills Needed for Technical Writing

To begin with a course/ career in technical writing, you need a set of skills that will enhance your abilities in this field. We have listed down the skills you might need as a technical writer :

  1. Writing Skills
  2. Ability to work with technical writing tools
  3. Systematic Approach
  4. Efficient sourcing skills
  5. Teamwork abilities
  6. Critical Thinking Skills
  7. Web Designing Skills
  8. Sociological Skills

How to Improve Technical Writing?

Since the genre of writing serves a different purpose altogether, the tips to improve technical writing also are genre-specific. The aim of this form of writing is to make complex technical content easily readable. Regardless of the type of document that is written, the writer needs to follow a procedure which includes knowing the audience, following a clear and formal style of writing besides thoroughly researching before starting to write.

Here are the tips to improve your technical writing:

Know Your Audience

The basic thing for technical writers is to understand the audience they are writing for. If it is specifically for professionals, then the bar of writing should meet their expectations. But when the audience is not so acquainted with the technical terms, subject-specific jargons, abbreviations etc, the challenge gets bigger. It is important to establish a new concept before writing about it. Spelling out the acronyms and giving a detailed overview of the concepts help readers relate the given information.

Maintain a Formal Style

Using impersonal style sets it apart from the normal story writing. In technical writing, it is important to write from a third-person perspective which helps in establishing the credibility of the text as meeting the standards of objectivity. Avoid opinionating the concept, rather focus on facts and easy way of disseminating them. It should look like a teacher instructing his students rather than storytelling or commentary. 

Research From Multiple Sources

While technical writing deals with subjective knowledge, it is important that the facts are verified and well presented. To improve the craft and be close to achieving the goal of writing, research part should be taken seriously. Make a list of sources before writing, and research thoroughly about the subject. A small mistake left unchecked would bring down the credibility of you as a Technical Writer. 

Keep Your Technical Writing Simple and Thorough

A good Technical Writer makes a difficult task easy and complex concepts easily comprehensible. Rather than giving abstract ideas, the writing should be crisp and to the point, however, the length of the text can vary depending on the need. It is to be kept in mind that a reader in search of credible information would read the document, so it is necessary that you should be able to deliver thorough information on the concept.

Use Examples and Visuals 

Since technical writing can be tough to understand despite the writer’s incessant efforts to keep it simple. The factual data and statistics make it harder to understand. To bring clarity and make it smooth for readers to digest it, the use of examples and visuals can be made. The graphical representations help you convey complex ideas with ease. 

Technical Writing Topics

If you are a beginner looking for suitable topics in this form of writing, then here’s a list of topics you could use to get started with :

  1. 3D Printing
  2. Nuclear Power
  3. Thermal Power
  4. Plate Tectonics
  5. Solar Automobiles
  6. Global Warming
  7. WiFi
  8. Greenhouse effect
  9. Acid Rain
  10. Rain Forest
  11. Continental Drifts
  12. High Definition TV
  13. Deforestation
  14. Green Roofs
  15. Endangered Species

Technical Writing Courses

Now that you’re well versed with what technical writing essentially refers to, you might want to take up the course. To help you with that, we have listed a few top online courses :

  1. Google Developer’s Technical Writing Course
  2. Henry Harvin’s Technical Writing Course
  3. Udemy 
  4. Coursera

Career Scope for A Technical Writer

In terms of how we connect with colleagues, clients, and end-users, the workplace has undergone a revolution in the last several years. Technology and the written word have grown increasingly significant as a result of fewer face-to-face meetings. This is an ideal venue for the area of technical writing to grow. Jobs in technical writing are rising at a greater pace than the national average, at 12%. A technical writer’s income varies, but the typical median wage is $61,671. A technical writer is someone who creates informative manuals and instructions that deal with complicated subjects. Among the responsibilities of the job are:

  • Researching topics
  • Writing technical documentation
  • Editing for publications
  • Revising technical documents (guidebook, reports, brochures, articles)

The best way to keep your writing up to date is to read. Reading books and articles relevant to your genre of writing will help you get better at your craft. Like any other form of writing, technical writing needs to be honed and mastered. If you are planning to power up your skills in writing, Leverage Edu has some best courses for you to pursue in top universities abroad. Book your 30-minutes free career counselling session with our career experts and start your journey now!

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