Subject: Certification
From: Brian Gordon <elasticsoul2003 -at- yahoo -dot- ca>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 27 Jul 2005 16:05:51 -0400 (EDT)

Before we call for an organization to "govern" and
certify us, better to decide if certication is
required or desirable. Because, once such an
organization exists, it will surely begin regulating.

Writing is very subjective, and therefore hard to
certify. A style of writing that works well for
projects that must be localized may not work well at
all for an annual report. Would one's knowledge of the
rules of grammar be tested? Typing speed? Ability to
meet deadlines? Ability to present to clients? Who
gets to decide what TW's *must* know?

Often, certification is used by those in a particular
position to create barriers to entry to others seeking
that position (i.e., are used to increase job
security), and so can cause stagnation in the field.
There are plenty of highly certified but not
particularly competent people in all kinds of jobs.

It's fine to say that certification would simply be
one tool to help managers determine that a candidate
is qualified, but I have often seen that certificates
are used to replace the effort required to determine
if a candidate is really a good fit for the job. I
know technicians who are better engineers than
engineers, but who cannot work as engineers due to
company policy. Or great managers who cannot manage
because company policy requires a Bachelor's degree
for managers.

All the best,

--- Gene Kim-Eng <techwr -at- genek -dot- com> wrote:

> I don't share the anti-certification view that some
> people seem
> to have.

> I just think that any discussion about the
> nuts and bolts
> of how and what to certify is mere wheel-spinning,
> because the
> first step in the process is for members of the
> profession to come
> to a consensus on a certifying organization.
> IMO, the only
> open discussion should be on developing a governing
> body, and
> once established, the governing body should develop
> the quals
> in an organized manner that doesn't resemble a
> Usenet flame
> thread.
> Gene Kim-Eng


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