Behind every great technical writer is a great technical editor. Or at least there would be in an ideal world. And, even more importantly, there would be a technical editor behind every non-writer who produces documentation.
We are tech support for the writers, whoever they may be. And we are the users’ final advocates before they encounter the documentation.
But how do we decide what support to give? What do we base our decisions on? How do we convey it to the writers, and how do we convey it in a way that doesn’t make them cringe?
In this 6-week course, you will learn:
- What technical editors are and why we’re needed.
- The “hard skills” and “soft skills” that technical editors should possess.
- How to identify passive voice and bloated sentences, as well as how to fix them.
- What style guides are and how we use them, as well as how we might use other resources.
- How to mark up text using proofreader marks.
- What some popular editing environments are, and the basics of how to use them.
- What levels of editing are and how to identify the scope of work.
The intended audience for this course is primarily technical editors who are new to the field and students who are considering entering the field. Seasoned technical editors who need a refresher or who never formally studied this topic may also benefit from this course.
Li-At Rathbun has over 20 years of technical communication experience (yes, since kindergarten). For the last ten of those years, she’s worked primarily as the technical editor in a Docs department that ballooned from 15 writers to 26.
Li-At has continuously served in various STC leadership positions since her very first meeting. She’s currently the Technical Editing SIG co-manager, Santa Barbara chapter president, and Surveys Lead for the CAC (Community Affairs Committee).
Li-At presented at the STC Technical Editing Virtual Conference, Summit 2015 Leadership Day, Spectrum 2016, and Summit 2016. She will be presenting at the STC Summit 2017 at the National Gaylord Resort.