Masters Degrees in Technical Writing: Online & Campus-Based Programs

A technical writer might write an article explaining medical procedures or create a product use manual for computer software. A master's degree can enhance your prospects in the field through classes in proposal writing, science writing, document design, and more. Programs are available on campus and online. Schools offering English Reading & Writing degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Options Do I Have for a Master's Degree in Technical Writing?

There are many options available online for a degree in technical writing, sometimes known as technical communications, at the master's level, including fully online programs and hybrid programs that offer online courses. There are also a large variety of campus-based programs available. Some online and on-campus programs require an internship that can be done locally, but you usually have the option of doing a thesis instead. Both Master of Arts and Master of Science degrees are available in this field.

Program Requirements Internship or thesis may be required
Common Courses Grant writing, team communication, business writing, instructional design
Prerequisites Bachelor's degree, letters of recommendation, entrance exam scores, essay
Online Program Requirements Computer with internet connection to access distance learning web site
Average Salary (2014) $71,950

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Kind of Courses Will I Take for This Degree?

Most programs provide coursework in effectively communicating technical information in a variety of fields. Generally, classes include:

  • Proposal or grant writing
  • Web content
  • Methods of team communication
  • Regulatory documentation
  • Science writing
  • Instructional design for technical materials
  • Business writing

What Are the Admission Requirements?

You'll need a bachelor's degree, although most programs don't require your undergraduate degree to be in English or in a writing field. Some programs do require that you have undergraduate coursework in areas such as linguistics, speech or communications. Other requirements include letters of recommendation, an entrance essay and current GRE scores.

How Do Online Programs Work?

In an online technical writing program, you'll typically access your courses through a school's online distance learning website. On the course page, you'll be able to access coursework, online study aids and additional materials. In most programs, you'll be able to upload your homework and projects on this page. You'll be able to communicate with your teachers and fellow classmates via e-mail, online forums, real-time chat rooms and instant messaging programs.

What Is the Career Outlook for This Field?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of technical writers was expected to increase by ten percent between 2014 and 2024 ( In 2014, about 52,000 people were employed as technical writers. The average annual salary of technical writers in 2014 was $71,950, according to statistics released by the BLS.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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