ADVANCED (GRADUATE) CERTIFICATE PROGRAM
ADVANCED (GRADUATE) CERTIFICATE PROGRAM
Students focus on professionalizing their communication skills through intensive practical writing activities and the application of relevant theoretical content. Students plan, create, edit, and deliver messages for a range of audiences, purposes, and mediums, including print, social media, and web-based contexts. Independently and collaboratively, students’ complete projects including case studies, writing workshops, and project management assignments. Students gain professional and entrepreneurial skills for industry and self-employment, as well as real life experience through participation in a placement during the final semester. The Technical & Professional Writing program prepares you to work as a versatile communications professional. This Advanced certificate program focuses on assessing audience needs and delivering thoughtful and relevant content, combined with effective project management techniques that help you develop the skills you need to write and produce copy for a variety of professional settings and styles.
Program Learning Outcomes
- Analyze the elements of storytelling in texts and choose appropriate narrative techniques and forms for a variety of writing projects.
- Create documents suitable for a diversity of audiences and purposes using advanced linguistic and rhetorical skills.
- Create documents that adhere to standards of structure/formatting for standard print and electronic forms such as informational articles, reports, blog posts, and web site copy, and strategically repurpose content across these forms.
- Integrate new communications technologies into an existing media toolkit.
- Manage a multifaceted editorial project or communications campaign from the planning stages through completion, using a team-oriented, collaborative leadership style.
- Adapt a consistent, unique writing voice to different platforms and genres.
- Assess the needs of complex communications campaigns and then select and deploy appropriate strategies to meet those needs, using knowledge of communications theory and audience analysis.
- Produce and/or edit error-free publications for both print and on-line environments, using grammar and mechanical rules, correct and relevant editorial terminology, and copy-writing and style guides.
- Analyze the structure and mechanics of a variety of document forms, both electronic and print, and apply substantive, line-level, and copyediting revisions as appropriate.
- Analyze the media landscape and the range of communications fields to plan ways to navigate the industry and market oneself.
- Create an online portfolio and social media profile to market writing skills to potential employers and freelance clients.
- Select suitable and credible research sources for strategic applications to a range of advanced communication challenges.
Instructional Activities, Design and Delivery Mode
The innovative courses in this program encompass a wide range of communications disciplines and vocational skills, including: Web copywriting, Technical writing, Proposal writing, Writing for social media, Content marketing, Presentations and speech writing, Content management, Information design and data visualization, and Digital storytelling. A field placement opportunity in the final semester provides you with valuable experiences in a variety of industries.
Evaluation of Student Learning
Evaluation of student learning is based on completion of course assignments or projects. Due dates and criteria for successful completion of each course assignment will be outlined by the instructor at the beginning of each course.
Courses and Outlines
|Course Name||Course Code||Course Level||Course ID||Course Credit||Course Outline|
|Professional Writing Essentials||TEWP-PIE||1||TEWP-PIE-001||3||In this course, students are introduced to the scope and function of writing for different audiences and purposes and the role of the technical communicator as an ethical professional. Through a combination of lectures, practical writing, and lab activities, students learn how to communicate technical information using a variety of text-based and web tools. Students learn concepts, techniques, and writing styles applicable to the technical field.|
|Collaboration and Project Management||TEWP-CMA||1||TEWP-CMA-001||3||When working on collaborative projects, writers need to understand the fundamental principles for successful project management, including how groups can work most effectively and productively. In this course, students learn how to manage the life cycle of a project, to identify potential constraints, and to ensure projects move from initiation through to successful completion. Students create project related documentation and graphics using appropriate industry software.|
|Copywriting Fundamentals||TEWP-COF||1||TEWP-COF-001||3||This is an intensive writing course where students develop the knowledge and skills to become creators of digital, broadcast and print content. Students write for a variety of audience types and media styles, including online platforms. Creative and analytical skills are encouraged through writing projects, and the prinicples of structure and organization as a means to produce effective copy are explored.|
|Research for Professional Writing||TEWP-RPW||1||TEWP-RPW-001||3||As a precursor to the writing process, students develop their research skills in a variety of contexts. This course is subject matter driven, and students develop the ability to locate secondary research sources by using databases, digital libraries and other methods of research that are appropriate to need. Students also focus on developing primary research skills as a tool to support independent studies and for a variety of document types such as proposals, technical documents and design manuals.|
|Fundamentals of Format, Layout and Design||TEWP-FFD||1||TEWP-FFD-001||3||Students learn the fundamentals of document design in this course. As a precursor to Writing for the Web in the second semester, students learn to appreciate how messages are affected by the selected medium, as well as how layout, design, and clear and consistent formatting techniques are necessities to the effectiveness of a text. Using a variety of software applications, students focus on content and document design that demonstrate the importance of visual logic, organization, and clarity.|
|Style and Editing Essentials||TEWP-SEE||1||TEWP-SEE-001||3||Throughout this first semester course, emphasis is placed on being able to identify errors and indicate required changes to a variety of long and short messages. Students are introduced to the principles of advanced grammar, punctuation and sentence structure, as they practice and reinforce their skills through rigourous writing activities. Students also focus on developing non-technical skills such as polishing language, clarifying content, and streamlining structure as part of stylistic and substantive editing processes.|
|Professional Writing Advanced||TEWP-PWA||1||TEWP-PWA-001||3||Students build on the techniques covered in Professional Writing 1, using research and project planning to support their writing skills as they undertake a sustained writing task. Students manage the writing and editing process from initiation to final draft, using appropriate technology.|
|Proposal and Grant Writing Essentials||TEWP-PWI||1||TEWP-PWI-001||3||In this course, students are provided with practical experiences of writing to defined criteria, such as those found in proposal outlines. Students gain hands-on writing experience through workshops as they gather supporting information, and compose coherent and effective messages that inform and persuade the reader to act. A variety of proposal types are examined, including community development proposals and Requests for Proposals (RFPs), as a means of understanding the function of criteria and guidelines in applications.|
|Creative Writing||TEWP-CWR||1||TEWP-CWR-001||3||Through stylistic writing principles, students learn how build narratives that captivate and engage readers. Building on traditional methods of storyline development, such as plot line and character development, students optimize their storytelling skills to create messages that inform and persuade.|
|Proposal and Grant Writing Advanced||TEWP-PGA||1||TEWP-PGA-001||3||Successful grant proposals are those that have been researched and specifically targeted to each respective funder. This course provides students with the opportunity to critically examine the granting process. Students investigate and practice grant research strategies, and explore methods for building relationships with potential grant funders. Students apply fundamental elements of effective proposal writing in response to grant applications, and discuss evaluation of the proposal writing process.|
|Wirting for the Web||TEWP-WWE||2||TEWP-WWE-002||3||In this practical writing course, students incorporate some of the fundamental elements of Web design with content development, and build on the content learned in Copywriting Fundamentals. Students learn how to source images and videos, and integrate them with relevant text for an online audience. Exploration of online content may include web pages, blogs, virtual magazines and writing across social media platforms.|
|Style and Editing Advanced||TEWP-SEA||2||TEWP-SEA-002||3||Within this course, students focus on applying the skills learned in Style and Editing 1. Students employ advanced editing procedures through practical writing assignments as they develop a professional portfolio of writing. Students explore how to market their own skills as freelance editors through association with professional organizations.|
|Quality Management||TEWP-QUA||2||TEWP-QUA-002||3||All successful projects are built on a platform where project managers understand their customers’ requirements, convey those requirements into a statement of work, and then complete that work in a way that meets or exceeds customer expectations. Students learn how to collect, write, analyze, and manage customer requirements, create effective scope statements, and utilize project quality management tools and techniques. Good project managers know how to apply organization- specific content to reinforce the requirements of regulatory and standards bodies.|
|Business Management for Professional Writers||TEWP-BUM||2||TEWP-BUM-002||3||This course is designed to help students evaluate the business skills and commitment necessary to successfully operate an entrepreneurial venture and review the challenges and rewards of entrepreneurship. Students learn about themselves, their decisions, and their goals to determine how entrepreneurship can play a role in their lives. Students are also introduced to entrepreneurship from an economic perspective and the concepts of environmentally sustainable practices and social entrepreneurship.|
|Professional and Technical Writing Services||TEWR-PTW||2||TEWR-PTW-002||3||Within this course, students undertake a capstone project that embraces content and skill acquired over the two-semester period. Students select areas of particular professional interest and begin to make connections with industry specialists to create a piece of written content for a selected medium, audience, and purpose. The result is a substantial, professional project to be included in individual portfolios.|
|Professional Writing Internship||TEWR-INT||2||TEWR-INT-002||0||Students complete a minimum of 240 hours in an approved professional setting, performing a number of competencies to allow opportunities to demonstrate ability in the field.|