TechWhirl (TECHWR-L) is a resource for technical writing and technical communications professionals of all experience levels and in all industries to share their experiences and acquire information.
For two decades, technical communicators have turned to TechWhirl to ask and answer questions about the always-changing world of technical communications, such as tools, skills, career paths, methodologies, and emerging industries. The TechWhirl Archives and magazine, created for, by and about technical writers, offer a wealth of knowledge to everyone with an interest in any aspect of technical communications.
Bob Morrisette wrote:
> UCLA has many on-line courses of interest
> to writers. Their URL is www.then.com
Demand for online courses is one of this year's hottest unrecognized
trends. The only way I know to track what's being offered is to use the
keywords "online learning" or "distance learning" or something like that
in your favorite search engine. Ziff Davis University currently has a
healthy number of courses, available for $4.95/month plus books, etc.
If you're after certification in most of the major vendor products, you
can usually get the courses online somewhere, currently at widely
varying prices. You can get both undergrad and graduate degrees from
accredited institutions online, again for widely varying fees. The
California State University system is in the midst of a pilot project
involving putting some of the various university courses online; when
the pilot ends this June, there will probably be a healthy migration of
parts of the curricula by California's junior colleges and Cal State
University offerings to the online environment.
It makes huge common sense: once you realize how easy it is to learn at
least the basic elements of a tool via online Help, the easy next step
is to put non-software items online. And once you realize you can
incorporate sound and video into your online offerings, and you can
interact with the prof via chat rooms, message boards, etc., you begin
to rethink the inherent value in having a teacher lecture to a roomful
This is not to say that online offerings will replace the conventional
classroom. But it's about time that the educational establishment
realized that currently available technology can help alleviate the
problems associated with physical colocation of students and profs.