Technical Writing (Advanced)

Course CodeBWR301
Fee CodeS3
Duration (approx)100 hours
QualificationStatement of Attainment

Communicate more effectively on a technical level

  • Learn to write technical manuals, scientific documents, texts and articles or anything else of a scientific or technical nature.
  • Develop skills to write technical information for a variety of different purposes.
  • Professional development course for anyone working in a technical field, from consultants and teachers to scientists and engineers, in fact anyone who wants to improve their writing skills.

The course is suitable for:

  • existing writers
  •  new and improving writers
  •  staff who wish to move into technical writing as part of their job
  • Continuing Professional Development

The world of technical writing awaits you, enrol on our course today and being your journey!

Lesson Structure

There are 9 lessons in this course:

  1. Scope and Nature of Technical Writing
    • Nature and Scope
    • Quality of Information
    • Nature of Language
    • Structure
    • Characteristics of Technical Writing
  2. Presentation of Technical Writing
    • Presentation
    • Basic Parts of a Document (Written text, Images, White space)
    • Headings
    • Types of Images (Tables, Charts, Graphs, Photos, Drawings)
    • Captions and Labels
    • Main Elements (Front Matter, Body, end matter)
    • Creating an Index
    • Elements of Different types of Technical Documents (References, Texts, Journals, Reports, etc)
    • Referencing
  3. Matching Style and Content to the Audience
    • Writing for an Audience
    • Writing Well
    • Writing Guidelines (Jargon, Gender neutral writing, Using simple sentences, passive or active language, first, second or third person, etc)
    • Spelling, Grammar
    • Editing, Proof reading
  4. Planning: Developing a Logical Structure or Format
    • Creating a Technical Document
    • Research the Document; gather information
    • Plan; decide on the format
    • Write; create an outline and then write the first draft
    • Verify; check the accuracy of what you have written
    • Revise; amend the document before
    • Writing a First Draft
  5. Collaborative Writing
    • Working in a team
    • Tasks and Roles
    • Technical Brief
    • Strategies for Collaboration
    • Style Guide
    • Using Templates
    • Using Email Effectively
  6. Writing Technical Articles for Periodicals
    • Writing for Periodicals
    • Publisher Specs
    • Writing Descriptions and Specifications
    • Journal Abstracts
  7. Writing Manuals and Procedures
    • Writing manuals
    • Writing Instructions and Procedures
    • Guidelines
    • Troubleshooting
  8. Writing Project Proposals
    • What is a Proposal?
    • Proposal Categories (Solicited and Unsolicited)
    • Model for Writing Proposals
    • Grant Proposals
    • The Stop Format
  9. Writing Project Reports
    • Types of Reports
    • Progress Reports
    • Completion Reports
    • Review Reports
    • Regulatory Reports
    • Feasibility Reports
    • Scientific Reports
    • Elements of a Formal Report
    • Executive Summaries


  • Identify a broad range of situations where technical writing is used and where you might gainfully apply those skills;
  • Present technical documentation for a variety of situations;
  • Determine how to write appropriately for a defined audience;
  • Develop formats for different documents that follow a logical appropriate structure;
  • Explain how to effectively collaborate with one or more people in the production of a technical writing assignment;
  • Write items of technical writing that are appropriate for publication in different types of periodicals including: popular magazines, industry magazines, scientific journals, newspapers and e-zines;
  • Write easy to follow, technically accurate instructions for a variety of processes, using a variety of equipment;
  • Write a formal proposal for a project;
  • Write in an effective and appropriate style of report, during, or on conclusion of a project.

What is Technical Writing?

Technical writing is usually the term given to writing about technical subjects, such as computers, machinery or equipment. This is the kind of writing one sees in instruction manuals, how-to books, and reference materials. This is a fairly narrow definition of technical writing.

A broader definition of technical writing is any writing in which the focus is on the correct, accurate and precise communication of practical information; information that is presented in order to instruct, guide, facilitate or train. Falling under this broader definition are reports, text books, records, submissions, plans and other documents that are not necessarily about technology.

An even broader definition of technical writing reflects its wide applicability to a large range of writing situations, from workplace writing to the highest levels of academic writing.

Almost all writing we come across in everyday life, in home and work, is technical writing (the exception being, of course, fiction books and magazines). The instructions that tell us how to assemble a set of shelves, a resume from a prospect employee, or a submission to a professional journal are all considered to be technical documents. Some of the most common types of technical documents are listed below:

  • Instruction manuals and handbooks.
  • Workplace and technical procedures.
  • Technical specifications.
  • Business proposals.
  • Reports.
  • Memos.
  • Agendas.
  • Meeting minutes.
  • Presentations.
  • Business letters.
  • Newsletters.
  • Fact sheets and brochures.
  • Forms.
  • Questionnaires.
  • Briefing materials to support oral presentations.
  • Feasibility studies.
  • Policy statements.
  • Academic theses.
  • Resumes.
  • Reference and text books.
  • Technical articles in journals and other periodicals.
  • Web-based documentation.

Types of Technical Writing

Applications for technical writing include:

a) Published writing - books, magazines and reports;

b) Reference guides - manuals, procedures, other documents meant to be used as a reference or to provide instructions;

c) Technical records – which record technical information for later reference.

Neutral language is free of obvious bias, emotionality or unsupported, unnecessary value judgements. It does not generally express or imply moral or emotional judgements. It does not express or imply discrimination on the basis of race, age, gender, or social status, and is respectful in tone and content.

Precise language is language that expresses exactly what it intends to express, while accurately conveying correct information. For example, a report on motivation in the workplace might include the following statement: “Younger workers feel that their ideas are undervalued and ignored by the older workers, who generally resist change”. This may be partly true, but it is not a precise statement. It implies that ALL younger workers feel that ALL or MOST of their ideas are ignored by ALL the older workers, who ALL resist change. A correct sentence using precise language might be: “Several younger workers feel that their ideas are undervalued and ignored by some older workers, two of whom they believe resist change”.

Precise language avoids unwarranted generalisations. Generalisations can be very useful and helpful, and allow inductive reasoning (reasoning from specific facts to general principles). However, they can also lead to broad, blanket statements based on assumptions that are either derived from a few instances or from existing stereotypes. This kind of generalisation should be used very carefully and, in technical writing, only where it is necessary and justified.

Consider the relative accuracy of the following pairs of statements, and decide which is more precise.

· Writers use different fonts, bold, italics, and colours to emphasise their messages OR

· Word processors allow writers to use different fonts, bolding, italics, and colours to emphasise their messages.

· When writing a periodic report, identify the period being covered in the report to distinguish it from other reports OR

· A report writer should identify the period being covered in the report to distinguish it from other reports.


In technical writing, information is organised clearly and according to appropriate logic. This organisation should be made completely transparent by using a consistent, logical system of informative headings and subheadings. The structure (and headings) should be so obvious that a reader can skim the document (even a book) and gain a quick overview of what is covered, how ideas are organised, and how they are developed.

A clear, transparent structure makes reading a document much easier, for it allows the reader to identify the pattern of ideas and follow a logical, natural-feeling path from idea to idea. A poorly-structured document, no matter how well-written in other respects, causes the reader to lose track of the development of ideas, pause often to think about how a new piece of information fits in to the whole, and become confused or disoriented. At best, the reader becomes a little frustrated. At worst, the reader can become confused and irritated and begin to focus on the poor structure or other errors rather than on the content. Good structure is like a skeleton. It holds the whole body of work together.

Characteristics of Technical Writing

Good technical writing helps the reader do the following:

  • Quickly locate information.
  • Understand the information.
  • Apply the information in a practical way.

To achieve these outcomes, good technical writing must have the following characteristics:

  • Clear and precise use of language.
  • Correct language.
  • Accessibility to the intended audience.
  • Correct information.
  • Information appropriate to the intended readers and desired outcomes.
  • Sufficient information for full understanding.
  • Logical sequencing of information.
  • Clearly defined structure through use of informative, factual headings.
  • Adherence to the rules of correct grammar.
  • Appropriate use of jargon and technical terms.
  • Sufficient and appropriate use of illustrations or diagrams.


There are lots of reasons why you should sign up to do this course with us, including:

  • The course is detailed to ensure that you have the level of knowledge required to apply the practices in your own work, whether that's as a business employee or as a self employed writer
  • Within each lesson you have the opportunity to apply your learning to activities which enables you to practice different concepts and expand your own research in areas of interest
  • Knowledge of these key areas will enable you to stand out from other applicants when it comes to applying for jobs, it will also give you greater confidence
  • Having the knowledge of different technical writing skills will enable you to work in many different sectors and business types, giving you flexibility now and in the future
  • Our subject specialist tutors will be there to support you throughout your course, they are only too happy to share their industry knowledge and experience with you
  • When studying with us you set your own deadlines, meaning you study at your own pace enabling it to fit around other commitments


You can enrol on the course now, but if you have any questions about the content of the course or studying with ACS, then please get in touch with us today - use our FREE COURSE COUNSELLING SERVICE to get in touch with our expert tutors. They will be pleased to help you!


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