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Technical Communication

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The Technical Communication major (and minor) prepares students for workplace writing in careers that involve information—particularly scientific, workplace, and technical information. Emphasis is placed on researching, thinking critically, collaborating (often with subject matter experts), organizing, writing, editing, designing, and presenting information clearly. TComm is sometimes a second major for students in technical, scientific, or engineering fields, and often a second major or minor for students who major in English.

Technical Communication Major Requirements

Majors develop advanced skills in multiple aspects of technical communication and apply their knowledge of technical communication to a specific discipline. Technical Communication majors must take 33 credits within the major, and 6 hours in a designated area of concentration related to science, technology, or design (an acceptable minor will also fulfill this requirement).

ENGL 214Introduction to Technical Communication3
ENGL 310Rhetorical Analysis3
ENGL 313Rhetorical Website Design3
ENGL 314Technical Communication3
ENGL 415Business and Technical Editing3
ENGL 416Visual Aspects of Business and Technical Communication3
Electives: 9 credits (with at least 6 credits from 400 or above courses)9
Descriptive English Grammar
Business Communication
Proposal and Report Writing
Business and Professional Speaking
Biological Communication
Rhetorical Traditions
Seminar in Argumentation
Seminar in Technical Communication
Internship in Business, Technical, and Professional Communication
Document Design and Editing
Multimedia and Interaction Design
Designated Area of Concentration (DAC) in technical, scientific, or design field6
Total Credits33

Designated Area of Concentration Courses

The Designated Area of Concentration (DAC) is a student-designed grouping of related courses in a technical, scientific, or design field that will meet the student's professional or academic interests. Courses for the 6-credit DAC must be taken outside the English Department and approved by the Technical Communication Program Adviser. A second major or a minor in areas such as computer science, social science, natural science, entrepreneurial studies, design studies, engineering studies, or another technical, scientific, or design field may substitute for the DAC.

Technical Communication, B.S.

ENGL 150 (or Engl 250 by placement or transfer credit)3Social Science Choice3
Humanities Choice3Natural Science Choice3
Foreign Language/Elective4Humanities Choice3
MATH or STAT3Foreign Language/Elective4
LIB 1601Elective or Minor3
Elective or Minor3 
 17 16
TComm Elective from List - ENGL 200+3Technical/Scientific/Design Course3
Social Science Choice3ENGL 3143
U.S. Diversity Choice3ENGL 300+3
Natural Science Choice3ENGL 3103
ENGL 2503Humanities Choice3
Computers in the Study of English (if student took ENGL 150 semester 1) Natural Science Choice2
 15 17
ENGL 300+3ENGL 3503
International Perspectives Choice3Elective or Minor3
TCOM Elective from List - ENGL 400+3TCOM Elective from List - ENGL 400+3
Humanities Choice3Technical/Scientific/Design Course3
Social Science Choice3Electives or Minor3
 15 15
Technical/Scientific/Design Course3ENGL 4873
TComm Elective from List - ENGL 400+3TComm Elective from List - ENGL 400+3
TCOMM Elective from List - ENGL 400+6Electives or Minor6
Electives or Minor3 
 15 12

Technical Communication Minor Requirements

The department offers a minor in Technical Communication, which students may earn by completing the following:

ENGL 314Technical Communication3
Choose 4:12
Introduction to Technical Communication
Business Communication
Proposal and Report Writing
Rhetorical Analysis
Biological Communication
Rhetorical Website Design
Visual Communication of Quantitative Information
Rhetorical Traditions
or with the appropriate prerequisites
Technology, Rhetoric, and Professional Communication
Business and Technical Editing
Visual Aspects of Business and Technical Communication
Seminar in Argumentation
Seminar in Technical Communication
Content Management
Document Design and Editing
Multimedia and Interaction Design
Total Credits15

Nine of the 15 credits must be 300 level or above and students must earn a grade of C (not C-) or higher in each course taken in the minor. The minor must include at least 9 credits that are not used to meet any other department, college, or university requirement. Students may design their minor programs around their own interests but are encouraged to work with the Technical Communication Program Adviser.

Note: Students should check the ISU catalog to be sure that they meet prerequisites if they intend to register for 400+ courses.