We will discuss academic literacy, an important aspect of the scientific community, and how it holds importance while studying in a technical writing course. Our article will be interesting and useful for undergraduates, graduate students, young researchers, and in general, everyone who plans to connect their life with science, as well as those who are somehow connected with science and technical writing.
In modern conditions, English prevails in the scientific community. In this regard, it is necessary to adhere to academic literacy within the framework of the technical writing course. Scientists believe that the key indicator of the academic success and general ability of students studying at university is the combined possession of good reading and writing skills.
Practically in all universities, the development of academic literacy of students takes place within the framework of special university courses, the centerpiece of which is assigned to the course of academic writing. The pace of development of scientific thought and the volume of scientific materials that are published are such that it is simply impossible to ignore the inability to submit, present and communicate the scientific ideas to the world community.
It is quite natural that many technical institutions are extremely interested in promoting and developing this aspect. It is possible to get a technical writing certification, but it requires dedication and effort. Usually, to get this certification, a student should pass through different courses. These courses include:
- Academic literacy. The purpose of the course is to acquaint the listener with the notion of “scientific discourse.” After studying the materials of the course, you will receive important skills in reading scientific writing that will help you become a successful writer of scientific texts, capable to make objective assessment of your work. A distinctive feature of the course is the review of the necessary tools and effective strategies for improving your academic literacy.
- Scholarly communication. The course features unwritten rules of scientific writing, which are often a stumbling block for most scientists, especially if English is not the native language. After successfully mastering the course, you will gain the skills of scientific writing, aimed at self-editing and checking the draft of your scientific article. You will also get a full picture of academic honesty and the ethics of scientific writing. The final work of the course is the writing of a scientific article ready for publication in the largest scientific journals.
- Grant proposal. This is a course on how to create a grant application, which will allow reviewers to better assess the merits of your work. After studying the materials of the course, you will learn how to express your ideas most accurately in written speech, create structured and concise text, and conduct market research to find potential sponsors. You will also learn how to properly use negative feedback from reviewers and reapply your application. This course discusses useful project management tools and possible pitfalls in budgeting.
- Technical writing. The course is devoted to the development of the technical writing skills necessary to describe the results of technical or experimental work and to help you obtain technical writing certification. The focus is the study of the main features and concepts of technical language. You will learn how to write various types of technical reports: laboratory, research, project, etc. The course also touches on the language, structure, stylistics and content of the report, which you may encounter when creating a report of your research.
- Capstone project. You may deal with final work, in the performance of which you test the knowledge obtained in four courses of specialization when creating an original research article for publication.
In the learning process, the emphasis is on practical assignments, and each course contains clear goals and a clear algorithm for achieving them.
Where to Use Technical Writing Skills
Technical writing is a form of technical communication used in a variety of technical and professional fields, such as computer hardware and software development, chemistry, aeronautics and astronautics, robotics, finance, consumer electronics and biotechnology. Technical writing is a broad area, including any form of writing that displays one or more of the following features:
writing about technical or specialized topics such as computer applications, medical procedures or environmental instructions;
detailed instructions on how to do something, regardless of the technical nature of the task.
Technical writing is a type of writing where the author writes about a particular topic that requires guidance, instructions or explanations. This style of writing has a completely different purpose and different characteristics compared with other writing styles, such as creative writing, academic writing or business writing.
Technical writing is clear, easy to understand explanations often with or consisting of instructions dealing with a specific topic. This is an effective and clear way to explain what something is and how it works. Having understood the basics of technical writing, there comes an understanding of the most optimal use of it.
Technical writing can be found everywhere. There are many different types of writing that use the technical style. For example, instructions of all kinds are a perfect example of technical writing. When the reader opens the instruction, he or she understands that its purpose is to inform about the product so that he or she can use it as efficiently as possible.
Laboratory reports are another example of technical writing. The main goal of the laboratory report is to explain the results and the process of laboratory research so that others are able to obtain and understand the information. Navigation instructions can be considered a type of technical writing, since the goal is to clearly and effectively provide information on how to get from point A to point B.
In general, technical writing is a useful form of writing, with which, without exception, everyone encounters almost every day. If this article was useful for you, check out also our post about technical report writing.