Key Concept Archive

For more information about how our library science background (and our love of all things metadata) guides the way we catalog information, see the Techcomm and Arbortext Resources page.

What Every TPC Professional Needs to Understand About UX

No matter what kind of work you do as a TPC professional, chances are you working with information intended for a very specific user. This is the user who will read your content, interact with your product, or navigate your…

Deconflict: A User-Centered Approach to Editing for the Military

Military organizations are longstanding discourse communities that often pose unique challenges when it comes to fully understanding needs and preferences while balancing best practices for communication. A user-centered approach that promotes ethnographic study and co-authorship can help technical communicators improve…

Inside Out or Outside In

From the company’s perspective, it is important to clearly document and describe how each of the functions and features work. From the users perspective it is important they understand how to use the technology to benefit themselves. The challenge for…

Accessibility Basics for Professional and Technical Writers

As we move forward to create a more diverse and inclusive world, delivering accessible content becomes increasingly important. But what do we mean by “accessibility” and why should accessibility be important to professional and technical writers? In this session, Bob…

The Interplay of UX and Technical Communication

User experience includes every interaction people have with a company and its products…from opening the box to using the product. When using an app to interact with a product, the visual and written content must work together seamlessly to deliver…

Cognition, Visual Design, and Usability

The design of visuals affects how we use them every day. But what makes some visuals more effective that others? The answer to this question is central to usability across many different technologies – from street signs to computer interfaces….

Cognition, Design, and Usability: An Primer for Technical Communicators

Nothing is inherently usable. Rather, usability is about cognition—or how our minds process sensory input. If technical communicators understand such factors, they can create materials that address them and develop more usable designs. In this session, the presenter overviews Cognitive…

Building a Style Guide from the Ground Up

How do you establish a style guide, and how do you keep it going? In this session, I’ll talk about my experience implementing and maintaining a corporate style guide. What started as a casual department guide for 25 tech writers…