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Certificate & MS

MS Advisor & Director of Graduate Studies
Laura Gurak
211 Nolte Center

Certificate Advisor
Jim Hall
213 Nolte Center

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schedule an appointment.

See our graduate handbook

The University of Minnesota’s scientific & technical communication program is one of the oldest and most highly respected programs of its kind in the country. Our faculty and instructors hold prominent roles in national and local disciplinary communities, are well published, and have served as editors of the journals of Technical Communication Quarterly and Written Communication.

With our experienced faculty and a curriculum focusing on 21st-century professional challenges, we are well positioned to offer you a premier certificate or master's degree experience, preparing you for a career in an in-demand field.

As a graduate student in our MS or graduate certificate programs, you will have the opportunity to work with the Technical Communication Advisory Board (TCAB), a group of local and national business leaders who can provide you with opportunities including networking, mentoring, and internships. TCAB members provide input and direction to our technical communications programs, strengthening their relevance and status.  

Graduate Certificate in Technical Communication

The online graduate certificate in technical communication program provides graduate-level instruction for working professionals and students to enhance your knowledge and skills in technical communication. The graduate certificate prepares you for jobs such as technical writer and editor, web content writer and management, information architect, online content/social media editor, and e-learning designer.

Students enter this one-year program in fall, spring, or summer semester and complete five online courses (15 credits). Courses introduce you to the field of technical communication and cover such topics as writing with digital technologies, information design, international professional communication, and editing and style.

It is not necessary to take the GRE to apply to this program. All five courses can be transferred into our master of science program.

View full requirements

Master of Science in Scientific & Technical Communication

The MS in scientific & technical communication prepares students for local and global careers in online design and social media, software/hardware documentation, information architecture, medical communication, environmental communication, and human-computer interface design. Enjoying a national reputation, the program includes 7 courses (21 credits) in the Department of Writing Studies and 3 courses (9 credits) in an outside competency area that may also be fulfilled by a graduate-level minor.

To complete in two years: 

  • Five courses in year one (all online) introducing the field, writing with digital technologies, information design, international professional communication, and editing and style
  • Five courses in year two include the competency area (3 courses); either usability and human factors or grant and proposal management (1), plus a final professional practice capstone course (1).

If a student has previously completed the graduate certificate in technical communication (year one courses), all five courses transfer to this MS program.

View full requirements