Technical Writing

 

 The Writing Talents of Laurie Hudson

Often misunderstood, technical writing is not merely about communicating among highly advanced scientific professionals, it can also take the form of a carefully crafted email correspondence to your boss or be demonstrated in the instructions on the back of your favorite shampoo bottle. Like any form or category of writing, the author must start by considering his or her audience and the purpose of the communication. Creativity and the ability to conceive and communicate a vision also play critical roles in technical writing.

From two different experiential opportunities I contributed to collaborate projects, including a proposal, a findings report and two grant proposals. The culmination of a technical writing course taken at Georgia Gwinnett College (GGC) resulted in class-conducted focus groups among our peers, a presentation of the qualitative data to the College’s Office of Educational Technology, and a Learning Management System Findings Report (PDF) detailing the entire project. Members of the class interviewed and were selected for the various positions needed for the project. As a member of the writers’ group, I contributed to much of the initial writing, became one of the primary editors concerning content, and contributed to and executed the final design of the document. Also, my Findings Report Proposal (PDF) outlining the management of the report-writing process was selected to serve as a guide to the writing project.

Most recently, my experience as an intern at GGC allowed me an opportunity to work collaboratively with two clients, Associate Vice-President of Educational Technology Dr. Kristine Nagel and Assistant Professor of Information Technology Dr. Nanette Napier. Together we researched potential grant opportunities and selected three to pursue for funding. If awarded, this funding will locally promote IT-related activities and learning for under-represented populations in IT-related occupations. The first two were submitted to the National Center for Women and IT. Each expand IT-related internship opportunities for GGC students as an effort to recruit and retain them in IT-related programs offered at GGC. The first aims at recruitment through a Technology Ambassador Program (PDF) and the second focuses on student retention via the Computing Exerience Program (PDF). The third grant proposal has been written, but will remain in the GGC internal approval stage until its submission in January 2012. The internship class concluded with a final celebratory event where we displayed posters representing our different experiences and participated in a panel discussion to an audience of our peers, faculty and community clients.

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