Re: Training and TW

Subject: Re: Training and TW
From: Rose Wilcox <RWILC -at- FAST -dot- DOT -dot- STATE -dot- AZ -dot- US>
Date: Thu, 19 Oct 1995 10:34:00 PDT

>Our company just hired a new technical trainer. He is new to the
>Internet and has asked if I can help point him to any training
>resources (WWW pages, etc.). Does anyone have suggestions?

I can point to a list:
Send email that says
SUBSCRIBE computer-training <1stname> <lastname>
to listserv -at- bilbo -dot- isu -dot- edu

This is a daily or twice-daily digest. It ranges from very interesting
intellectual discussion of training techniques and writing, to requests for
software information, to banal request for unsubscribe information. Since
it's low volume, I've enjoyed it and kept my subscription in spite of the
occasional digest that is nothing but an unsubscribe.

Also I heard of another one, but I don't have any background info on it.


Send email that says
SUBSCRIBE trdev-l <1stname> <lastname>
to LISTSERV -at- PSUVM -dot- PSU -dot- EDU

>Also, how many of you tech writers also write (or have some input to)
>your company's training materials? Do you use the master document
>approach, where one body of text is reworked into separate training,
>user guide(s), and online help topics? He's used this at his previous
>job but I have grave reservations about it. We'd really appreciate
>any comments. Currently, our user guides and online help files are
>developed by the same writer, but adapted to fit the needs of the
>type of document. The training materials and documentation we write
>are for telephony software, using Word, FrameMaker, and whatever else
>is handy.

Well, Jane, I have had input, usually more on the editing level, rather than
the actual writing level. I usually find training needs to put in "less"
stuff than I need to put in a manual. I would tend to share the same
misgivings as you do; however, if he has experience doing it, I would tend
to try to work with him to find out how it might work. Anything you can do
to increase your value to the company without overworking yourself could be

Working with the trainer can also give you the benefit of user input to the
documentation. If he notices that the users typically have a lot of trouble
with a certain screen or concept, that is helpful information to a writer.
Plus trainers are usually really nice people and fun to work with. :-)

Rose A. Wilcox
rwilc -at- fast -dot- dot -dot- state -dot- az -dot- us
ncrowe -at- primenet -dot- com
"Innovation is hard to schedule." - Dan Fylstra

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