By Li-At Rathbun | Writing and Communication Track Manager
If you are looking to Gain the Edge at the Summit by improving your writing and editing, here are a few sessions to consider in the Writing and Communication track:
What if attending Summit 2017 could save your company thousands of dollars? If your company translates its documents, what you learn from Adam Jones’s session might do just that! In Avoiding the $36 Comma: Clever Editing Strategies Can Reduce Translation Costs, the COO of a localization-services company explains some secrets of localization pricing and shares concrete tips for reducing your translation costs.
As an editor, what happens when your writers don’t speak English as their first language? That’s the question Jessica McCaughey addresses in her session, Edits as ESL Teaching: Working with Multi-lingual Writers. When editors understand how language learning really happens, they can use the editing process to help multi-lingual writers substantially improve as communicators—beyond just completing the writing projects. This workshop provides practical techniques for helping multi-lingual writers improve their writing skills through an editing process that focuses on what you and your company truly value in writing.
One woman’s personal nightmare with battling cancer—and her attempts to understand the technical concepts and terminology told to her for her medical diagnosis and treatment options—led to Learning Styles and the Cancer Experience. Debbie Kerr, a 5-year breast cancer survivor and 30-year technical communicator, combines her insights as a cancer patient with existing research on learning styles to offer options for how we can more effectively communicate medical information to patients. While this session focuses on cancer and medical information, it can help any technical communicator who struggles with delivering information to an audience that isn’t clearly defined and is made up of people with various learning styles.
The technical editing field is changing rapidly. So say Dr. Laura Palmer and Dr. Susan Lang, and I doubt anyone contradicts them. For many editors, it’s no longer only about using proofreader marks to edit text by hand. At Summit 2015, Drs. Palmer and Lang discussed some of the challenges and opportunities facing those who train and those who hire editors. Whether you attended that session or not, you’ll want to attend the sequel—Technical Editing for the 21st Century: Reconsidering Competencies in Academic Offerings. It further illuminates issues that academics face in training future editors, and it explores how companies can best incorporate into their work environment and products the new competencies that recently graduated editors possess.
According to Becky Todd, you can create excellent documentation through crowd-sourcing. Wait; what?! Crowd-sourced documentation—where developers, product managers, and other non-technical communicators contribute content—is becoming more and more common. In her Engineering Content Champions presentation, Becky Todd lays out the rules for success and explains how this culture shift can result in enriched end-user documentation.