The content of the training course is similar to our off-the-shelf technical author training for software developers. The primary benefit of this training course is that the content is dependent on the needs of the participants. We do a training needs analysis. We look at your existing materials, and we discuss with you the problems that your writers have. The training course then deals with these problems. Your existing materials are the basis of practical exercises.
The following list shows the typical topics that we discuss:
- Bad writing and unclear text. How to write what you mean. Plain English.
- English grammar skills.
- Writing for international readers.
- Active voice and passive voice. When to use each type.
- Lists and tables.
- Audience analysis and task analysis. Reasons for understanding the needs of readers. Defining tasks. Deciding on the level of detail.
- User-centred delivery: writing for the readers. Procedures compared to system-centred writing.
- Notes, cautions, and warnings.
- Modularity. Preventing unnecessary repetition. External resources. Training.
- Layout and design. Delivery issues (printed and electronic options).
- Graphics (screen shots, illustrations, and other art).
- Terms management: defining a glossary.
- Structuring the content.
- Tools use. Using styles and style sheets.
- Indexing to give access to content.
The training course is 'hands-on', and we do not spend much time on theory. A maximum of eight people can attend the training course.
Duration: one day.
Location: your company site or some other location that is convenient to you. The meeting room must contain either a flipchart or a whiteboard. We do not need computers or audio-visual equipment. If you prefer to come to us, we can organise a suitable training site.
Fee: from £4450.00 + VAT (the fee is for the training course, with a maximum of eight participants).
Booking and information: contact Mike Unwalla, 0114 232 6776 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
"This was a thought-provoking day that will help me in my future documentation."
Phil Ayers, Rail Operations Support, Atos Origin (http://uk.atos.net).
"It was particularly interesting to be made to confront some of the problems with our existing documentation and to see how, with a little effort, this could be improved. Mike has put a great deal of effort into building the course around our own material and has given us some excellent ideas for constructing better documentation."
Christine Grove, Customer Training Manager, Transport Operations, Atos Origin (http://uk.atos.net).
"Very pleased with the content and how it will help TNT improve its technical writing."
Paul Tebbutt, Technical Services, TNT (www.tnt.com).
"Very well presented and tailored to TNT's requirement."
Ian Boaler, ERC, TNT (www.tnt.com).