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Characteristics of Technical Writing with Examples

Technical writing is a great way to translate complex information into something that’s easy to understand. Hence an excellent technical writer must be aware of the characteristics of technical writing to convey a message better.

Speaking of which, this blog post focuses on exploring the fundamental traits of technical writing. You’ll also get to read real-world examples to improve your understanding. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

Important Characteristics of Technical Writing

Here’s a rundown of some positive traits of technical writing with illustrations.

Clarity

Technical writing is all about making complicated stuff simple. You don’t need big words or excessive jargon. It’s about giving clear explanations and ensuring that readers understand the message clearly.

Example

Unclear: “The device failed to function due to an unforeseen technical anomaly.”

Clear: “The device stopped working because of a technical glitch.”

Conciseness

Technical writing is a straightforward way of conveying critical information without additional fluff. It focuses on delivering the important details quickly. Thus, saves the reader’s time and reduces potential misunderstandings.

Example

Wordy: “In the event that you encounter any issues with the software, kindly do not hesitate to contact our customer support team, who will be more than happy to assist you with resolving the problem.”

Concise: “Contact customer support for software issues.”

Accuracy

Technical writers need to be precise when dealing with factual information because accuracy is of the utmost importance! They must thoroughly research the subject matter to ensure that information is accurate. Also, should double-check the facts before presenting them to the audience.

Example

Inaccurate: “The new product is 110% more efficient than the previous model.”

Accurate: “The new product is 10% more efficient than the previous model.”

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Audience Focus

A good technical writer must consider the readers’ level of awareness, experience, and requirements. It will help address the users’ problems well and provide the best solution.

Example

Not audience-focused: A software manual for beginners includes technical jargon without explanations.

Audience-focused: A software manual for beginners uses simple language and provides step-by-step instructions.

Logical Organization

Technical documentation must be well organized and structured. It includes the use of headings, subheadings, lists, and paragraphs to make the content easily digestible.

Example

Disorganized: A research report lacks clear sections for introduction, methodology, results, and conclusion.

Organized: A research report is divided into clear sections for introduction, methodology, results, and conclusion.

Use of Visuals

In technical writing, visuals like graphs, charts, pictures, and diagrams are often employed. Why? To help explain complex ideas and make them more understandable.

Example

Text-Heavy: A user manual for assembling furniture lacks any visual illustrations or diagrams.

Visual-Aid: A user manual for assembling furniture includes step-by-step diagrams for each stage of the process.

Professional Tone

Technical writing has a formal and professional style to establish trustworthiness and authority. It is usually action oriented text that does not include slang words or conversational phrases.

Example

Informal: “Hey, guys! Let’s dive into the cool features of our awesome software!”

Professional: “Let’s explore the features of the software.”

Use of Examples

Providing relevant examples can help readers grasp and apply complex concepts in real-life scenarios.

Example

Without examples: A technical document explains a programming concept without illustrating its practical use.

With examples: The technical document includes code snippets and real-world applications to demonstrate the programming concept.

Revision and Editing

Proofreading and editing must be done meticulously. It is essential to eradicate errors, guarantee uniformity, and enhance the overall standard.

Example

Unedited: A user guide contains typos, inconsistent terminology, and formatting issues.

Revised: The user guide is thoroughly edited, correcting all errors and inconsistencies.

Documentation and Citations

When doing technical writing, it is important to include references from other sources and to provide citations to back up statements and discoveries.

Example

Lack of documentation: A research paper includes statistical data without citing the source.

Proper documentation: The research paper provides citations for all external data and references.

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Conclusion

Technical writing must contain certain features to be successful. These include being clear, precise, focused on the intended readers, well-structured, employing visuals to aid understanding, and more.

We have tried to explain them all above with examples for better understanding. If you still have confusion in mind about technical writing, do count on the professional expertise of our writers.

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