The School of Modern Languages and Translation Studies
University of Tampere View of Tampere

The Technical Communications Programme

Curriculum 2009-2012

Advanced studies (40-45 ECTS)

TECHS1 Technical Documentation, Finnish, 5 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To introduce technical communication as a profession and a discipline. To familiarize students with target group analysis, legislation, and analysis and production of technical documents in Finnish. Emphasis on manuals and user´s guides.
CONTENTS: Lectures and exercises, final assignment. Graded.
LITERATURE:

  • Huckin & Olsen (1991): Technical Writing and Professional Communication for Nonnative Speakers of English.
  • Markel (2004): Technical Communication.

TECHS2 Technical Documentation, English, 5 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with analyzing, editing and writing technical documents in English.
CONTENTS: Lectures and exercises. Graded.

TECHS3 Select Themes in Technical Communication, 5 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with different phases of the documentation process, the profession of the technical communicator and the business sector. One special theme every year.
CONTENTS: Lectures, possibly participation in the autumn seminar of the Finnish Technical Communications Society, presentation/panel discussion, learning diary. Graded.
LITERATURE:

  • Hackos (1994): Managing Your Documentation Projects.
  • Articles distributed during the course.

TECHS4 Textual Composition, 2 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with the basics of typography, layout and the visualization of documentation.
CONTENTS: Lectures and exercises, familiarization with desktop publishing software.
LITERATURE:

  • Itkonen (2003): Typografian käsikirja.

TECHS5 Introduction to WWW Techniques, 4 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with the creation of websites (e.g. HTML, CSS) and image processing.
CONTENTS: Lectures and exercises, creating a website, exam. Graded.

  • Articles distributed during the course.

TECHS6 Structural and Modular Documentation, 3 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with the basic consepts of structured documents, modular documentation and single-sourcing.
CONTENTS: Lectures and exercises, familiarization with SGML/XML software.
LITERATURE:

  • Ament (2003): Single Sourcing. Building Modular Documentation.
  • Articles distributed during the course.

TECHS7 Usability and Technical Communication, 3 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with the concept of usability and special aspects of usability concerning technical documents.
CONTENTS: Lectures and exercises, final assignment.
LITERATURE:

  • Nielsen (1993): Usability Engineering.
  • Coe (1996): Human Factors for Technical Communicators.

TECHS8 Terminology Work and Technical Language, 2 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with terminology, concept analysis, characteristics of terminological lexicons and technical language.
CONTENTS: Lectures and exercises, final assignment.
LITERATURE:

  • Will be announced during the course.

TECHS9 Online Instructions, 2 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with the authoring of electronic documentation and different instruction systems.
CONTENTS: Lectures and exercises, familiarization with an authoring tool.

  • Horton (1994): Designing and Writing Online Documentation.
  • Articles distributed during the course.

TECHS10 Advanced Studies Book Examination, 5 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To familiarize students with the history, development and professionalization of technical communication, and the production and evaluation of technical documentation.
CONTENTS: Book exam. Books available at course library, articles distributed at the beginning of the programme. Graded.
LITERATURE:

  • Hoft, Nancy L. 1995. International Technical Communication: How to Export Information about High Technology. New York: John Wiley and Sons Publisher.
  • Schriver, Karen A. 1997. Dynamics in Document Design. Creating Texts for Readers. New York: John Wiley & Sons (huom.: ei sivuja 249-359).
  • Carliner, Saul 2000. Physical, Cognitive, and Affective: A Three-part Framework for Information Design. Technical Communication, November 2000, Volume 47, Number 4, 561-576.
  • De Jong, Menno & Schellens, Peter Jan 2000. Toward a Document Evaluation Methodology: What Does Research Tell Us About the Validity and Reliability of Evaluation Methods? IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication, September 2000, Volume 43, Number 3, 242-260.
  • Hart-Davidson, William 2001. On Writing, Technical Communication, and Information Technology: The Core Competencies of Technical Communication. Technical Communication, May 2001, Volume 48, Number 2, 145-155.

TECHS11 Traineeship, 4 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To gain experience of working in the field of technical communication.
CONTENTS: An approximately three-month paid traineeship as a technical communicator, or a document commission done as a student assignment. Instructions for writing the traineeship report

TECHS12 MA Thesis Seminar, 5 ECTS
OBJECTIVE: To develop abilities for writing a Master's thesis and to complete and implement an approved research plan.
CONTENTS: Active participation in seminar sessions, collecting and analyzing research material and writing a thesis.

Note! The students prepares their thesis, 35 ECTS, under the code of their major subject. The Technical Communications Programme lecturer acts as supervisor together with a supervisor from the major subject.

Top