Boosting Your Technical Knowledge for Writing

Posted on October 24, 2015 by Tom L

technical writerThere comes a point in a regular writer’s career when general capability is not enough to win higher paying jobs and projects. It’s not because the person can’t write. In fact, the qualification has nothing to do with their general scribe capability. Instead, it has to do with practical knowledge of the subject matter. The topic becomes so technical that without a formal education in the matter it’s very hard for a general writer to compete. Fortunately, there are now ways around this problem that didn’t exist just ten or twenty years ago. Getting an education online while still writing and working fulltime is extremely easy; you just need discipline to stay on track.

Your Local Community College

Believe it or not, most community colleges in every state now offer the ability for students and returning workers to get reskilled in various programs by earning a degree or certificate. They often get a bad rap but these resources can now specialize a student versus just offer a basic associate degree education. For example, if you needed to understand biology better to win projects in scientific writing, everything from the studies of mammals to human biology is available in regular, TV and online courses. How about the law and legal writing? A justice degree combined with business law classes and real estate will give you a solid foundation for legal writing on evidence, court procedure, property law and more. Even better, the cost for these classes is amazingly low normally and could be almost free. Community college tuitions range about $140 for three credit classes, and most institutions offer a tuition waiver if you apply for financial aid. And many are approved. So you end up only paying for your books.

Online MOOCs

Another big development has been the world of Massive Online Open Courses or MOOCs. Coursera and EDX are two of the biggest, and they both offer a wide variety of higher level topics. You sign up for the course, determine if you like it a few weeks in, and then make a decision if you want to pay for an ID-verified certificate on completion. Most courses run between $50 to $100, however, many offer a certificate of completion for free. If all you need is proof that you’ve been trained in a topic, this is a free way of earning the related education from known universities. Just don’t expect the certificates to be worth much if you want to apply them to a formal college education.

In short, there are easy, reachable ways to improve or enhance your formal education without breaking the bank and still being able to write at the same time. So the next time someone wants to find freelance writers with a technical background in an area, your name can be right at the top with the necessary background in place already. The above methods work great for both those who never earned a degree as well as those who need to retrain again. Don’t give up when you hit a wall, always keep learning and become a better writer in the process!

 

tom l writerBIO: Tom L has written over 5,000 articles in the last ten years and has a graduate degree, but he’s still back in school at night earning three more degrees in Justice, Anthropology and Psychology.

 


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