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New Duke Program for Technical Communicators and Those Who Want to Be
2004, Q2 (July 05, 2007)
By Laurel Ferejohn

Another path to advancing your technical communication career — or to beginning it — just emerged: the new Duke Certificate program.

Unveiled in November by Duke Continuing Studies, The Certificate in Technical Communication offers three required courses and several electives to earn the Certificate, and they do it in evening and weekend classes that range from two to eight sessions.

“The opportunity to earn a credential from Duke is a great career advantage,” says Larry Kunz, senior technical writer with VERITAS Software Corp. and an instructor in the program. “There hasn’t been a Certificate program at all since the old Durham Tech program ended. The Duke Certificate is timely and needed.”

The curriculum, which includes the required courses Technical Writing Workshop, Information Architecture, and a survey of the profession titled Technical Communication: Introduction, was developed in consultation with long-active members of the STC Carolina Chapter, many of whom teach in the program. In addition to Kunz, instructors in the current spring term include Michael Uhl, Manager of Scientific and Information Visualization for Science Applications International Corp. at the EPA; Ann-Marie Grissino, President of Keypoint Consultants; Alexia Idoura, senior manager at VERITAS; Michael Harvey, senior manager of Documentation and Web Services for EMC; and Jim Sheedy of SAS. This fall they will be joined by several colleagues.

The lineup of courses this fall will include electives in Medical Journalism, Writing the NIH Grant, Authoring in XML for Nonprogrammers, Developing Training Materials, Working Effectively with SMEs, Planning for Quality, Managing the Information Development Process, Essentials of Teamwork and Collaboration, Proposal Writing, Choosing and Using Type, The Business of Technical Writing, and Writing Professionally: The Finishing Touch.

Visit http://www.learnmore.duke.edu/techcomm for program details, a
list of the currently running courses. Or call Duke Continuing Studies at 919-684-6259 to request a Fall 2004 catalog.

Editor’s Note: Technical communicators who wish to earn academic credentials in the profession have additional choices. NC State University offers an M.S. degree in Technical Communication through the Department of English. See http://www.chass.ncsu.edu/english/msprog/source.html for details. East Carolina University offers graduate-level programs that include a post B.A. Certificate in Professional Communication, an M.A. in English with a concentration in Technical and Professional Communication, and a Ph.D. in Technical and Professional Discourse. See http://core.ecu.edu/engl/tpc/tekkom/tpc.htm for details.

Laurel Ferejohn directs Short Courses for Duke Continuing Studies. She can be reached at Lfere at duke dot edu. End of article.

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