Tech Comm Portfolio

Subject: Tech Comm Portfolio
From: Shelley Hoose <shoose -at- mail -dot- metro -dot- net>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Sun, 14 Nov 1999 08:37:31 -0800

Dear Whrlrs,

Thanks for all your replies to my questions about what term to use when
creating a tech comm portfolio. FYI, almost all of your responses strongly
encouraged me to jettison any term which has to do with "design" and to
stick with the simple "tech writer." Period. The feeling was that whatever
other transferable skills one has, they will be evident in a well-written
resume. One response, by a tech recruiter, was that often when she sees the
word "designer" or "graphic designer" on someone's resume, it is a clear
message that they are probably a tech writer wannabe. Thanks, all.

Shelley

ORIGINAL MESSAGE:
I am a newbie transitioning from marketing communications to tech
communications, and am creating a portfolio so I can get a job. (I do have
some tech writing samples to put in it.) I am wondering, however, what is
an appropriate term to call myself.

My generic resume says that I'm a "writer, editor, designer * print and
web." My tech comm resume inserts the word technical before "writer."

But is the word "design" appropriate for the tech field? I have not seen
it often used. Or would "information design" be better? Actually now that I
think about it, why don't technical communicators refer to themselves more
often as information designers -- I think it is a more descriptive term.
Does it sound too high-falutin? Not able to be understood by an average
reader? Because "technical communicator" also does not tell the story.

In any case, for those of us (and I gather it's most of us) designing our
docs as well as writing them, is there a common descriptive term?

And, another question: is an instructional designer a sub-category of an
information designer?

Shelley Hoose
writer, editor, designer * print & web
821B Midpine Way
Sebastopol CA 95472, USA
Tel./fax: (707) 829-5753
E-mail: shoose -at- metro -dot- net






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