FWD: Re: Entry-level requirements

Subject: FWD: Re: Entry-level requirements
From: "Eric J. Ray" <ejray -at- RAYCOMM -dot- COM>
Date: Tue, 28 Oct 1997 13:13:04 -0700

Forwarded anonymously on request. Eric


Someone wrote:
>In my experience, the degrees which correlate well to success as a tech
>writer are history, theology, psychology, and sociology. Those which
>correlate least are English and technical writing.

And someone replied:
>I have to wonder at the logic of automatically throwing someone in the
>reject pile simply because they chose to learn to be a technical writer.
>I'm interested in lots of things, and it would have been silly for me to
>attempt to get degrees in all of them. Or to narrow my scope by only
>picking one of them. If I were following Mark's advice, I would have to
>get a medical degree because of my interest in medicine, a degree in
>history because of my interest in history, degrees in criminology and
>forensics and religion and art and music and... you get the idea.

The difference is that studying history or psychology gives you a way of
looking at the world. The lasting value of a traditional liberal arts
college major is not the book learning -- when was the Battle of 1812-- but
the fundamental question you ask in understanding the world around you.

Whereas a technical writing major, like any professional training, teaches
how to do something. It's akin to medical school (or any trade school),
not an undergrad biology major.

Even though the degree is the same, the type of education is different is
some very basic ways.

Eric J. Ray ejray -at- raycomm -dot- com
TECHWR-L Listowner http://www.raycomm.com/

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