Academic Publishing and Research Grants

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This Fall for the Book, save the date for a panel on Academic Publishing and Research Grants
Thursday, October 1 6:30pm – 7:45pm
Johnson Center Meeting Room C
Mason Fairfax Campus

The George Mason University chapter of the Society for Technical Communication (GMU STC) invites you to learn how to navigate the competitive world of academic publishing and grant writing from three successful scholars in the field of professional writing and communication:

Dr. Cheryl Ball is an associate professor of digital publishing studies at West Virginia University and editor of the online peer-reviewed journal Kairos: Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy. She recently won a $1 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to develop an open source editorial management system, EditMe.

Dr. Huiling Ding is an associate professor of technical communication at North Carolina State University and researcher in intercultural communication, risk communication, and medical rhetoric. She has published more than 20 articles in peer-reviewed journals and won 7 grants, worth over $125,000, to fund her research.

Dr. Jeff Grabill is a professor of rhetoric and professional writing at Michigan State University. He is a senior researcher with WIDE Research (Writing in Digital Environments) and co-founder of Drawbridge Incorporated, an educational technology company. His publications include two books on community literacy.

Download the FFTB Save-the-Date flyer as a pdf.

Read about the event and see the complete schedule on the Fall For The Book website.


GMU STC is the newest chapter of the STC, the world’s oldest and largest professional association for technical communicators. As a student organization, GMU STC is dedicated to helping current and future professional technical communicators—writers, editors, designers, and more—achieve their career, education, and service goals. Visit GMU STC on Facebook to learn more.

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Fall For The Book with GMU STC

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What began as a two-day literary event in 1999, organized by George Mason University and the City of Fairfax, has expanded into a week-long, multiple-venue, regional festival that brings together people of all ages and interests, thanks to growing community interest and generous supporting partners.

Read about the event and see the complete schedule on the Fall For The Book website.


GMU STC is the newest chapter of the STC, the world’s oldest and largest professional association for technical communicators. As a student organization, GMU STC is dedicated to helping current and future professional technical communicators—writers, editors, designers, and more—achieve their career, education, and service goals. Visit GMU STC on Facebook to learn more.

Building Your Professional Identity in Technical Communication Workshop

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We are delighted to announce a collaboration with the students and staff of the Writing and Rhetoric program at George Mason University. The event will have something for those entering the profession, as well as job seekers and professionals.
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Would you like to learn more about technical communication as a career? Are you currently seeking a job in technical communication? Or, are you a technical or professional communicator who would like to boost some of your career and communications skills?

The Building your Professional Identity in Technical Communication workshop will give you the opportunity to learn more about careers in technical communication, gain valuable feedback on resumes or your writing portfolio, and connect you to area students and professionals in technical communication.

The Workshop will feature three breakout sessions: Resumes, Portfolios, and Social Media/Online Presence. Each breakout session will combine presentations by experts in technical communication with one-on-one time for feedback on your materials and Q&A.

Current students, alumni, local professionals, and members of STC are welcome to join. This event is free to all participants. Refreshments will be provided.

Sponsored by the George Mason University Student Chapter of the Society for Technical Communication (GMU STC), with support from the Professional Writing and Rhetoric (PWR) Program at GMU and the STC Washington DC-Baltimore Chapter (WDCB).

We will be meeting at George Mason University’s Fairfax campus in The Hub, Meeting Rooms 1 and 2. From the main entrance, Meeting Rooms 1 and 2 are down the corridor to the left. The Hub is building 56 on the GMU map, in red.

There is usually ample parking in George Mason’s parking garages. The closest garage is the Shenandoah Parking Deck. The Shenandoah Parking Deck is building 43 on the GMU map, in purple. The Mason Pond deck is often a good back-up, and it isn’t quite as full. Parking can be challenging at Mason, so please be sure to leave yourself extra time (and patience!) to grapple with traffic.

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Illustrious Panel Lineup for our January 20th Event


Plan to join us at Guapo’s (Fiesta Room) in Bethesda for a lively, enlightening discussion with six academics from four area universities who teach in the field of technical communication. As you can see from their bios, they are involved in tech comm from a variety of perspectives and are sure to make for an evening well spent.

Please register online at

This event is being sponsored in part by Web First: Real Solutions for a Virtual World.


From George Mason University, Dept. of Writing

Prof. Doug Eyman, Ph.D.

Douglas Eyman, Senior Editor of Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy, is an assistant professor of English at George Mason University, where he teaches in the professional writing and rhetoric program. His dissertation, Digital Rhetoric: Ecologies and Economies of Digital Circulation (Michigan State University), received the 2007 Computers and Composition Hugh Burns Best Dissertation Award. At GMU, Doug teaches courses in Technical Communication, Web Design, Professional Writing, and Digital Rhetoric. His current research interests include digital rhetoric theory, method and practice; investigations of digital literacy acquisition and development; new media scholarship and electronic publication; information design/information architecture; teaching in digital environments and massive multiplayer online role playing games as sites of composition. Recent publications include articles in Technical Communication and Computers and Composition, and chapters in The Handbook of Research on Virtual Workplaces and New Business Practices (IGI, 2008) and Rhetorically Rethinking Usability (Hampton Press, 2008).

Prof. Susan Lawrence, Ph.D.

Susan Lawrence is Assistant Professor of English at George Mason University, where her department offers an M.A. in English with a concentration in Professional Writing and Rhetoric (PWR), and a B.A. in English with a concentration in Writing and Rhetoric. Her research focuses on the intersections of public and professional writing. She teaches graduate courses in professional writing, research methods, and discourse analysis, as well as the PWR capstone project course. She has directed undergraduate internships and teaches undergraduate courses in professional and technical writing.

From University of Maryland, College of Information Studies

Prof. Paul Jaeger, Ph.D., J.D.

Paul T. Jaeger is Assistant Professor, Director of Center for Information Policy and Electronic Government, and Associate Director of the Center for Library & Information Innovation in the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland. He serves as the Associate Editor of Library Quarterly. Dr. Jaeger’s research focuses on the ways in which law and policy shape information behavior. He is the author of more than ninety journal articles and book chapters, along with six books. His most recent books are Information Worlds: Social Context, Technology, & Information Behavior in the Age of the Internet (Routledge, 2010) with Gary Burnett, and Public Libraries and the Internet: Roles, Perspectives, and Implications (Libraries Unlimited, 2011) with John Carlo Bertot and Charles R. McClure. His research has been funded by the Institute of Museum & Library Services, the National Science Foundation, the American Library Association, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

From University of Maryland Baltimore County, Media and Communications Studies

Prof. Donald Snyder, Ph.D.

Donald Snyder is the internship coordinator and a full-time lecturer in Media and Communication Studies at UMBC. His dissertation was Building the Virtual World: Software, Beta Testing, and the Birth and Death of The Sims Online (defended July 2009). His professional publications include the article “I Don’t Go By Sean Patrick: Online, Offline, Out Identity and” in the International Journal of Sexuality and Gender Studies, Special Issue entitled “Queer Webs: Representations of LGBT People and Communities on the World Wide Web” (Vol. 7, Nos. 2 & 3, April/May 2002), the chapter “Life on Your Screen: Webcam Women” in Web.Studies: Rewiring Media Studies for the Digital Age (Ed. David Gauntlett, Arnold/Oxford University Press, October 2000), and numerous professional presentations.

From University of Maryland University College, Dept. of Communication Studies and Professional Writing

Prof. Connie Balcher, M.A.

Connie Balcher has an M.A. in TESOL (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages) and Linguistics from Columbia University. She is currently teaching technical writing at University of Maryland College Park and University of Maryland University College. In 2004, she founded Triple Crown Communications, LLC, providing writing training programs to the government and private sector.

Prof. Michelle Didier, M.A. , M.Ed.

Michelle Didier, adjunct associate professor, is a consultant in the information technology profession. She has developed technical documentation for the medical, scientific, financial services, real estate and telecommunications industries and state and federal government. She holds an M.Ed. from George Mason University, an M.A. in English with a Specialization in Technical Writing from Bowling Green State University, and both a B.S. in Biology and a B.A. in Journalism from the University of Toledo.

STC Live Web Seminars in August and September

by stc-office on 24 August 2009

STC has scheduled a number of pertinent live web seminars in the next few weeks. If you’re looking for quick, to-the-point, affordable continuing education, without the need for travel, sign up for these STC live web seminars.

Visit for descriptions, and to register.

Wednesday, 26 August
1:00–2:30 PM ET
Functional Forms Design: Putting Pragmatism Before Aestheticism
Presented by Eric Spears

Wednesday, 2 September
1:00–2:30 PM ET
Moving Unstructured Content to Structured Content
Presented by Bernard Aschwanden

Thursday, 10 September
1:00–2:30 PM ET
Climbing the Levels of Collaboration: How to Harness the Power of Crowds
Presented by Anne Gentle

Wednesday, 16 September
1:00–2:30 PM ET
Structure 2.0—Knowledge Delivery at Symantec
Presented by Tristan Bishop

Wednesday, 30 September
1:00–2:30 PM ET
The Future of Technical Communication: Remix
Presented by Barbara A. Giammona

STC Webinars in July 2009

Designing and Implementing Embedded Help

presented by Nicky Bleiel
Wednesday, 15 July, 1:00–2:30 PM

Embedding Help into your software application is the ideal way to give users relevant information exactly when they need it, making them successful and increasing the usability of your application. Learn how to integrate and deploy a dynamic, embedded Help pane that displays relevant information as the user navigates the interface. Best of all, this type of Help pane can be replicated by many without a custom implementation.

Today’s Agile Documentation

presented by Megan Leney
Wednesday, 22 July, 1:00–2:30 PM

This live web seminar explores recent trends in Agile, how documentation teams at Symantec apply current Agile thinking in their day-to-day work, and findings from a survey of Agile documentation team members. Hear what is working well and which best practices contribute most to the successful integration of Symantec’s documentation teams into the Agile process.

Converting Readers from Casual Subscribers to Devoted Followers: Best
Practices for Blogging

presented by Tom Johnson
Wednesday, 29 July, 1:00–2:30 PM

Making your blog influential requires you to give consideration to some best practices for blogging. Beyond search engine optimization, readability, and format, these best practices include crafting posts with story, revealing appropriately, and connecting with users through an engaging voice.

For more information on these web seminars, contact Elreatha Matthews, Education
Manager, at email hidden; JavaScript is required or by phone at +1 (571) 366-1903. To register for a live web seminar, visit STC’s website: