International Technical Communication: New Questions for a New Time
That the discipline of technical communication in the United States has been revolutionized over the past 20 years by computers and the World Wide Web is now a cliché. It is even fairly commonplace that both professional and academic technical communicators from the US travel to discuss their work with professionals in other countries.
The purpose of this presentation is to explore the kinds of questions these professionals are asking of each other. I will examine the published research on international technical communication to discover categories of topics already explored, especially the role of new technologies, including the World Wide Web, in changing expectations and practices. Furthermore, through a series of interviews with international professional communicators, I will investigate what questions need to be asked and what research needs to be done to create a truly collaborative, creative, and productive international environment for technical communication.
I will report my findings at the conference. There are two possible outcomes of my inquiry: (1) a comprehensive catalogue of the kinds of problems technical communicators are investigating in an international arena and (2) the kinds of research questions that still must be asked to come to a fuller understanding of the field.
Meg Morgan (United States)
Coordinator, Technical/Professional Writing Program
Department of English
University of North Carolina Charlotte
Meg Morgan directs the Technical/Professional Writing Program and the Internship Program and for nine years directed the first-year writing program at UNC Charlotte. She has published widely in program assessment and collaborative writing. She recently conducted writing workshops in South Africa for primary school and university teachers.
(30 min. Conference Paper, English)