What is technical communication?

Someone asked me if, as a rhetoric person, I could do technical communication. I said of course. I think the person didn’t understand what technical communication means.

Five characteristics distinguish technical communication from the more traditional composition courses in college curricula. Technical communication
is situation oriented and often directed to very specific audiences
has a strong visual component
has ties to other fields, including psychology and computer science

says Rebecca Kelly

I think that the first two points are true of business writing in general. However the last three are what make technical communication unique.

“Visual rhetoric” is becoming a hot topic in conferences so it may be that the visual component is not as unique to tech comm as I perceive it to be.

But this definition is a starting place for a conversation.

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