With the phenomenal growth of the technical communication field, you don’t have to go far to find courses to brush up and add to your skills. British Columbia, home of Canada West Coast chapter, is a hotbed of technical communication education, as reflected in the changes in curriculum at established and new institutions. Check out your options…
Burnaby and Downtown campuses. Information: (604) 434-1610.
Launched in January 2005, BCIT’s Associate Certificate in Technical Writing is a part-time program offered through the Communication Department. All instructors are industry experts still active in the field and vetted for their teaching ability, not just the excellence and currency of their knowledge. Courses include:
BCIT also offers an array of computer, programming, web development/design, and graphics courses that freelancers and students alike may be interested in.
For more information, visit:
(formerly Capilano College)
North Vancouver. Call Extension Programs, (604) 984-1727.
Capilano University offers an Interactive Design diploma program. The curriculum of this two-year program is founded on the conceptual fundamentals of communication in interactive media. The first year of the program encompasses all of the skills necessary to plan, design and implement websites. The second year includes advanced studies in one of three specializations: web design and development; disc-based interactive multimedia; and e-Learning.
New Westminster. Call (604) 527-5292.
Douglas—Home of the well-respected, full-time professional writing program called Print Futures, Douglas College has bowed to increasing demand and opened up most of the course to part-time students. However, be warned, student intake for part-time courses is six months prior to the term and courses are available only from September to April each year.
For links to courses and programs outside British Columbia or Canada, see Courses section on the Canadian Issues SIG web site.
Surrey/Langley. Call (604) 599-2100.
Kwantlen doesn’t have an established technical communication program per se, but offers an array of Applied Communication (CMNS) courses, including:
For more information, check out the Applied Communications Department Homepage.
City of Vancouver. Call Continuing Education at (604) 323-5322.
The two-year journalism program at Langara is well-respected and now offers some courses on a part-time basis.
For links to all of British Columbia’s publicly funded post-secondary institutions, see the Post-Secondary Application Service web site.
Harbour Centre Campus, Vancouver. Call (604) 291-5093, 604.291-5077, or (604) 291-5073.
In addition to its well-established non-credit certificate programs in Technical Writing, Business Writing, and Publishing, SFU offers courses that can help you expand your abilities in writing, editing, design and print production. See the Writing & Publishing Program and the semi-online Technical Communication Certificate Program. Courses include:
SFU also offers both undergraduate and graduate programs in information technology and interactive arts at their Surrey Campus.
Vancouver. Call Continuing Studies, non-credit, (604) 822-1444.
UBC offers a plethora of choices in Computer Science; you can learn about software for various platforms, at differing levels and for a wide range of prices. Check out course offerings in Web Development, Word Processing, Database Applications, Integrated Software, Spreadsheets, Statistics, Project Planning, Desktop Publishing, Graphics, Presentation, CD-ROM Production, Digital Imaging and Audio, Digital Video and Animation, Authoring, Networks, Operating Systems, and much more.
Victoria. Call the Department of Writing at 1 (250) 721-7306
The Professional Writing Program at the University of Victoria is jointly offered by the Department of English and the Department of Writing. All Professional Writing Students are advised to apply to the Arts and Writing Co-op to obtain on-the-job experience. The goal of the program is to develop skills required to succeed as a professional writer in business, industry, government, journalism and publishing.
City of Vancouver. Call (604) 443-8668.
Clear and concise writing can work for you! Learn to sell your ideas and present information in a variety of written forms. Technical communication requires special skills. Today’s professionals spend more of their time producing written documentation. Courses will be of interest to those in diverse fields, including science, health, technology and all business occupations. Assignments are designed to build your professional portfolio. This program consists of nine, one day courses. Participants may register for courses individually. Courses offered on Saturdays on a rotating basis.
VCC also seasonally offers written translation courses for bilingual individuals under its Interpreting (INTR) Program.
Course Advisor: Jennifer Gossen, (604) 443-8670
Program Assistant: Crystal Kreschuk, (604) 443-8711
City of Vancouver. Call (604) 685-5808
The Vancouver Film School is a private school offering a wide range of courses in multimedia and animation; many are available part time.
Powell River. Call 1 (877) 888-8890 (toll free).
Technical Communication Certificate (Online) – Almost every product comes with documentation produced by technical writers. Get started on this in-demand career path with our new non-credit Technical Communication Certificate Program conducted completely online. Each course runs for six weeks. Prerequisites: Computer Basics or equivalent skills, internet and email access, complete a free “orientation to Online Learning” prior to the course.
Course discount ($25 off) for current STC members.