UCF technical writing certificate

Last Updated on January 17, 2023

The Graduate Certificate in Professional Writing offers professionals opportunities to develop and improve communication skills vital to advancing in the workplace.

The certificate is designed for busy professionals, all courses are offered via the web, and the program can be completed in as few as three consecutive semesters.

Please note: This program may be completed online, although not all elective options or program prerequisites may be offered online. Newly admitted students choosing to complete this program exclusively via UCF online classes may enroll with a reduction in campus-based fees.


UCF prepares you for life beyond the classroom. Here, you’ll experience a wide range of opportunity, like learning diverse skills from world-renowned faculty to networking with top employers across Central Florida to gaining first-hand experience in internships nearby. Achieve your degree and more as a Knight.

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Do you have a knack for explaining complex subjects in a way that makes them easy to understand? If so, you should consider entering the well-paying field of technical writing. This course will teach you the fundamental techniques that all successful technical writers use. You will learn how to translate complex information into easily understood language, and how to become a wizard at marrying the art of publishing with the science of technology.

You will also learn the secrets of successful technical writers, including technical writing conventions, interviewing skills, desktop publishing and formatting techniques, key tips for developing graphics and templates, documentation management, and how to publish documents both on paper and electronically.

Enrollment Options:

Instructor-Led6 Weeks AccessCourse Code: tecStart Dates*Jul 14 | Aug 18 | Sep 15 | Oct 13*Choose start date in cart$129.00USDAdd to CartSelf-Paced3 Months AccessCourse Code: T9273No Instructor, Start Anytime$129.00USDAdd to Cart


Lesson 1 – Technical Writing Overview

Technical writing is a relatively new profession, but people have been writing technical documents for centuries. In the first lesson, you will learn the fascinating history of technical writing and how technical writing employs both the logical and creative sides of your brain.

Lesson 2 – Preparing to Write

Lesson 3 – Gathering Information

Lesson 4 – Writing Skills

Lesson 5 – Tech Writing Conventions

Lesson 6 – Graphics

Lesson 7 – Document Formatting

Lesson 8 – Microsoft Word’s Paragraph Styles

Lesson 9 – Document Templates

Lesson 10 – Creating Indexes

Lesson 11 – Editing and Proofreading

Lesson 12 – Publishing Your Document



Hardware Requirements:

  • This course must be taken on a PC. Macs are not compatible.

Software Requirements:

  • PC: Windows 8 or newer.
  • Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge is also compatible.
  • Any type of word processor can be used in the initial manuscript setup, however Word for Windows is used as the example (not included in enrollment).
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  • Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.


  • Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.


There are no prerequisites to take this course.

Instructional Material Requirements:

The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment and will be available online.


Lynn Atkinson earned a B.A. in English from the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) in 1993 and an M.A. in English with an emphasis in rhetoric in 1996. A published writer and editor, including contributions to college textbooks, she considers her greatest accomplishment educating thousands of students at UTA, DeVry, Tarrant County College, Southeast Career Institute, and Everest College. She has also been nominated for and awarded “Outstanding Teacher” at several of these institutions. Lynn has developed or co-developed several writing curriculums, won writing contests, and conducted over 10,000 hours of tutoring.

Communication is one of the most important elements of any business, and in many industries, employees rely heavily on written instructions and procedures. Technical writers advance and improve both internal and external communications by writing for websites, emails, proposals, technical instructions, and more. Professionals with these skills are in high demand throughout the business world, in schools and government agencies, and more. This technical writing course is the best way to get started learning everything you need to know about this exciting and diverse field.

This technical writing course is for you if you want to develop your technical writing abilities or are seeking a professional career as a technical writer. It will improve your understanding and use of written communications, making you an asset in any administrative, management, or technical writer role. Within the course, you will learn research methods, audience considerations, various writing styles, drafting and revision techniques, working in a collaborative environment, and more. This course will also introduce you to a variety of media and formats, such as Microsoft Word and Adobe PDF, and the different writing standards typically required for each.


What you will learn

  • Differences between academic and technical writing.
  • Advanced grammar rules and effective research methods.
  • Writing to meet the needs of your audience, including writing with clarity and utility.
  • Ethical issues in technical writing.
  • How to master a variety of technical documents, including memos, analyses, letters, executive summaries, and reports.
  • How to develop proposal documents.

How you will benefit

  • You will have a professional writing portfolio to show your work to current and potential employers.
  • You will be prepared for technical writing jobs such as management analyst, marketing manager, project manager, technical writer, and more.
  1. Introduction to Technical Communication
    1. Defining Technical Writing
    2. The Technical Communication Triangle
    3. What Is Technical Writing?
    4. Audience
    5. Purpose
    6. Ethics
    7. Medium
    8. Research
    9. The Seven Principles of Effective Writing
    10. Distinguishing Technical Writing From Other Types of Writing
    11. Assessing Your Relationship to Writing
  2. Your Role as a Technical Writer
    1. Introduction
    2. Ethics
    3. Codes of Conduct
    4. The Communication Dilemma
    5. Using Outside Sources
  3. The Communication Triangle
    1. Principles of Communication
    2. Establishing Common Ground
    3. Conditions Under Which Common Ground Fails
    4. Accommodating Your Audience’s Needs
    5. Common Ground and the Communication Triangle
  4. Types of Technical Correspondence
    1. Part 1: Email, Memorandums, and Letters
    2. Part 2: Step-by-Step Instructions Memos
    3. Part 3: Reports
  5. Seven Principles of Good Writing
    1. Introduction
    2. Appropriateness
    3. Focus/Unity
    4. Development
    5. Organization
    6. Sentence Structure
    7. Right Word Usage
    8. Mechanical Conventions
    9. Summary
  6. Writing as a Process
    1. Introduction
    2. Working in Stages
    3. Stage 1: Prewriting
    4. Stage 2: Outline
    5. Stage 3: The Rough Draft
    6. Stage 4: Revision
    7. Stage 5: Editing
    8. Summary
  7. Preparation
    1. Introduction
    2. Applying the Communication Triangle
    3. Prewriting
    4. Brainstorming
    5. Freewriting
    6. Journaling
    7. Analyzing the Rhetorical Situation
    8. Summary
  8. Research
    1. Introduction
    2. Starting the Research Process
    3. Data
    4. Documentation and Plagiarism
    5. Finding Secondary Data
    6. Documenting Secondary Sources
    7. Taking Notes From Sources
    8. Collecting Primary Data
    9. Surveys
    10. Interviews
    11. Observation
    12. Experimentation
    13. Summary
  9. Organization
    1. Introduction
    2. Methods of Development
    3. Writing Pattern
    4. Common Organization Patterns
    5. Outlining
    6. Thesis Statements
    7. Claims
    8. Factors of the Thesis and Claims
    9. Topic Sentences
    10. Self-Check
  10. Rough Draft
    1. Introduction
    2. Writing the Introduction Paragraph
    3. Writing Body Paragraphs
    4. Voice and Tone
    5. Writing the Conclusion Paragraph
    6. Summary
  11. Revising and Editing
    1. Introduction
    2. Developing Revision Vision
    3. Writing Ailments and Cures
    4. The Revision Process
    5. Editing
    6. Self-Check
  12. Conclusion
    1. Course Conclusion
  13. Final: Writing Assignment: Conclusion Essay
  14. Details


Hardware Requirements:

  • This course can be taken on either a PC or Mac.

Software Requirements:

  • PC: Windows 8 or newer.
  • Mac: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6 or later.
  • Browser: The latest version of Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox are preferred. Microsoft Edge and Safari are also compatible.
  • Microsoft Word (not included in enrollment).
  • Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  • Software must be installed and fully operational before the course begins.


  • Email capabilities and access to a personal email account.

Instructional Material Requirements:

The instructional materials required for this course are included in enrollment. The following textbooks will be shipped to you approximately 7-10 business days after enrollment:

  • Technical Writing for Success
  • Technical Communication

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