Technical Communication


To recognise the place and function of Technical Communication in the world nowadays;

Identify formal, discursive and pragmatic characteristics in a variety of samples of technical communication;

Analise documents and production contexts in accordance with various theoretical and rhetorical perspectives;

Engender the use of the appropriate research methodologies in Technical Communication;

Prepare scholarship or other contributions for conferences and other academic and professional forums.

The contents of this CU were prepared with a view to integrating the practical knowledge that the students may bring from their professional backgrounds, to exemplify and discuss, in the light of contemporary theory and practice, during the seminars

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Maria Rute Vilhena Costa


Weekly - Available soon

Total - 168

Teaching language



Without prior requirements


PRINGLE, A. S. AND O’KEEFE, S., The State of Structured Authoring, Scriptorium, New York, 2011 (2nd ed.)

MIREL, B. & SPILKA, R., Technical Communication, New Directions and Challenges for the 21st Century Laurence Erlbaum Associates, New York, 2002.

ALBERS. M. J.& MAZUR, B. (ed) Complexity Information Design in Technical Communication, Lea Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, London, 2003.

GURAK, L. J. & LAY, M. M., Research in Technical Communication, Praeger, Westpoint, CT, 2002.

SIDES, C. H. (editor) Journal of Technical Writing and Communication, Baywood Publishing Company, revista trimestral de leitura recomendada.

MARKEL, M. (ED), Technical Communication, Bedford/St.Martin's, Boston/New York, 2007.

Teaching method

There will be a combination of lectures in which theory presentation and discussion will take place and practical seminars where students will be encouraged to contribute with experiences and exemplars of technical communication, which their professional activities might generate.

Evaluation method

Assessment - A research paper written on a topic agreed upon with the teacher(50%), Oral presentation and discussion during a seminar, on the main conclusions and methodology used.(50%)

Subject matter

Communication in Professional contexts

Doing Technical Communication;

o Determining purpose and means

o Knowing the domain

o The reader and his/her contexto of situation

o Terminology

o The textual genre and discourse

o The document circuit

Differences in discourse in various professional communities and contexts

Collaborative communication

Preparing contents

  • For translation

  • For reuse

Revision, validation and quality assurance

Ethics and confidentiality


Programs where the course is taught: