Communication, Culture, and Technology: Learning Strategies for the Unteachable

Communication, Culture, and Technology: Learning Strategies for the Unteachable

Ray Gallon (Université de Paris Diderot, France)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-2214-2.ch005

Abstract

The challenges of teaching Content Strategy and Information Architecture in a professional Master’s program are daunting because in these two disciplines the source of quality is hidden, and methodology can provide little useful guidance. The solution was to provide the cultural, epistemological, structural, and strategic principles behind these disciplines in classroom sessions, employing traditional lecture methods plus interactive exercises. All practical, hands-on experience comes through group research projects where students are expected to apply the principles that have been discussed in class. Students are evaluated solely on the group research projects. This case study suggests classroom methodology adjustment to make it more interactive and bring it into line with the informational environment students live in every day.
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Case Description

Technical communication is a difficult subject to get a handle on. Within professional organizations, we, ourselves, spend a lot of time trying to define our own profession.

One way to look at it is that Technical Communication encompasses a multi-faceted industry that includes all communicators who are devoted to producing information that is useable, findable, and accessible, usually through the use of technology and structure.

Typical roles of practitioners can be:

  • Technical writer

  • Editor

  • Instructional designer

  • E-learning developer

  • Usability professional

  • Information architect

  • Content strategist.

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