Technical Communication Program

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The School of Engineering's Technical Communication Program (TCP), launched in 1976, is a resource for students seeking to strengthen their technical writing and/or speaking skills.

We offer individual consulting, courses, and tutorial support for departmental courses in the school. Our services are primarily designed for students in engineering, but we attract students from a wide range of disciplines, including the sciences, mathematics, medicine, social sciences, and business. We welcome interested students from across the university!
Our instructors provide feedback on all types of documents and presentations and have extensive experience in working on technical and scientific topics with students. 


                  We are located in Huang Engineering Ctr, Suite 049.


For more information, contact Mary McDevitt (Acting Director of the TCP):



  To request a consultation, please click on "consulting" tab below

Last modified Tue, 23 Feb, 2016 at 7:59

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Are TCP courses open to students outside the School of Engineering?

Yes. Although our courses are primarily designed for engineering students, they cover principles and issues which are applicable to a wide range of disciplines, including the sciences, mathematics, medicine, earth, energy and environmental sciences, social sciences, education, and business.

Are there any other restrictions on enrollment?

Some of our courses have enrollment caps, sign-up deadlines, pre- or co-requisites or a requirement of instructor permission. For details, see explore courses.

What is the difference between Engr 202W and Engr 202S, and which should I take?

Engr 202W, Technical Writing, is a regular course, with two class meetings per week, structured around the principles of effective technical writing for various kinds of readers and purposes. Assignments are designed to allow students to apply principles covered in the class. It also includes a one-on-one conferencing component for some assignments.  Engr 202S, Special Projects, is a directed writing tutorial consisting solely of weekly individual meetings in which the student and the instructor work one-on-one on an independent project or projects, e.g., proposal, dissertation, research and teaching statements, CV, thesis, journal article, or conference paper. Students seeking a general, systematic acquisition of technical writing skills are advised to take Engr 202W. Students seeking extended individual tutorial help with an independent writing project(s) are advised to take Engr 202S. Engr. 202S can be repeated for credit.  No prerequisite for either 202W or 202S. Both courses are offered Autumn, Winter, and Spring.

Can undergraduates take Engr 202S?

Yes. Although most of the students who enroll in Engr 202S are gradaute students, this directed writing tutorial can also be very useful for undergrads who are working on an honors thesis, journal/conference paper, or other independent writing project.

Can undergraduates take Engr 202W?

Engr 202W is a graduate level course, but advanced and highly motivated undergrads may take it with permission of the instructor. Interested undergraduates are encouraged to take Engr 102W, Writing for Engineers.

Can I get help from TCP without enrolling in a course? 

Yes! For short-term help with a writing project or a presentation see the "Consulting" tab.

Do I have to be a student in the School of Engineering to request a consultation?

No! Our instructors and tutors can provide feedback to students from a range of disciplines, and we welcome students from across the university.  

Additional questions?

Contact Mary McDevitt, Acting Director of the TCP:

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The Technical Communication Program offers a variety of courses to help students improve their technical writing and speaking skills.

ENGR 100: Teaching Public Speaking 
The theory and practice of teaching public speaking/presentation. In this tutor-training course, students deliver lectures, lead discussions, practice critiquing speeches, take part in fieldwork, and develop teaching materials in a term project. Hands-on introduction to designing an effective course, developing tutorial and workshop techniques, and teaching delivery, organization, audience analysis, visual aids, and style. Successful students are eligible to become paid public speaking instructors in the TCP. Admission to this course is by instructor's permission. To schedule an interview, contact Matt Vassar 5 units. Offered autumn, winter and spring.

ENGR 102W: Writing for Engineers
Intensive practicum focusing on effective communication of technical, scientific, and professional information in industry and academia. Best writing practices for varied audiences, purposes, and media. Group workshops and individual conferences with instructors. Designed for undergraduates. 3 units. Offered winter.

ENGR 103: Public Speaking   
Introduces students to the full range of speaking activities, from impromptu talks to carefully rehearsed formal presentations, and includes instruction on the development and use of visual aids. This practical course helps students develop confidence in their speaking ability through weekly practice in class, rehearsals in individual tutorials, and videotaped feedback.
3 units. Offered autumn, winter and spring.

ENGR 202S: Writing: Special Projects   
Non-lecture, one-on-one writing tutorial for students working on various writing projects, such as proposals, dissertations, journal articles, conference papers, honors or engineering theses, and teaching and research statements. Weekly individual meetings structured around the student's project. No prerequisite. This course may be repeated for credit.
1 unit. Offered autumn, winter and spring.

ENGR 202W: Technical Writing  
Teaches students how to write clear, concise, well-ordered and  effectively formatted technical prose for varying audiences and purposes. Drafting strategies and principles of revising for structure and style. Applications to a variety of genres in engineering and science. Class format combines lecture and workshop. Designed for graduate students.
3 units. Offered autumn, winter and spring.

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In addition to its formal courses, TCP provides consulting for students who want assistance on a non-credit basis. Students may arrange to meet with a writing tutor to get help with a relatively short project, such as a job letter, statement of purpose or short paper. Students may arrange to meet with a speech tutor to get help with preparing and rehearsing presentations.

Note: In all our work with students, the TCP emphasizes instruction. This principle applies to non-credit consulting; the consulting is not an editing service. Also note that non-credit consulting is for limited, short-term assistance only. Students seeking extended help are advised to enroll in one of TCP's formal courses.

To request a consultation with a writing or speech tutor, complete and submit the form below. Please be aware that during periods of high demand, availability may be limited. You can improve your chances of getting an appointment if you submit your request well ahead of your project's deadline.

Optional, but if English is not your first language, letting us know what language you are most comfortable with can help us better understand your needs.

Provide specific days/times you are available to meet.

Describe the writing or speaking project you want help with.

What particular aspects of writing/speaking would you like to focus on?

Do you have a deadline by which writing or presentation must be complete?

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Last modified Wed, 7 Oct, 2015 at 14:05

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In addition to staffing its own courses, the TCP provides tutorial support for writing and speaking activities in the School of Engineering's undergraduate and graduate courses.  We provide tutorial support for many of the School's Writing in the Major courses, as well as other engineering courses.  We customize tutorial support to the needs of the course.

We are also available to consult with faculty on assignment design, to give in-class presentations on writing and speaking, and to mentor TAs on how to respond to student writing and presentations.

For further information, contact Mary McDevitt, Acting Director,