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* The Technical Writing Project *

A corpus of texts for students, researchers, and teachers.

* Aug 2017 Update: We're Funded! *

Exciting News

We have received a 3-year award from the National Science Foundation to evaluate a data-driven approach to teaching technical writing to STEM majors (#1708360/#1708362.)

Stay Updated

Be sure to check our site for regular updates and resources. 

You can read more about this grant project here and here.

When made publicly available, the Technical Writing Project will be the first of its kind as well as the largest corpus of student writing.

The Problem

University undergraduates have little access to customized, discipline-specific writing instruction. The TWP seeks to improve the quality of this instruction in technical, scientific, and professional writing.

Our Solution

The TWP team has inventoried and converted 5,810 texts of student technical writing. These texts represent a variety of text types—job materials, instructions, white papers, briefing notes—that were produced by 871 undergraduates who represent over 40 different academic majors.

The Details

This functionality allows students, instructors, and researchers to develop their own language hypotheses and explore the texts on a number of metadata:

  • The writer’s gender, native speaker status, ethnicity, academic major, and academic classification.
  • The text’s type, broad classification, length, tokens and word types, and draft version (original or revised).
  • The context influencing each text’s construction, including the writer’s classroom instructor as well as the time and day of the course where the text was assigned.

* Meet the Creators *

Ryan Boettger, PhD

Ryan Boettger is an associate professor of professional and technical communication at the University of North Texas. His research areas include curriculum development and assessment, data-driven learning, STEM writing, and technical editing. Professionally, he worked as a technical editor for the Texas Army National Guard and as the managing director of a grants office at the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center. He is the editor of the  Professional Engineering Communication book series (Wiley-IEEE).

Stefanie Wulff, PhD

Stefanie Wulff is an assistant professor of corpus linguistics at the University of Florida. Her research focuses on variation in native and learner language, student writing, and second language acquisition. She has published numerous research articles and the book, Rethinking Idiomaticity: A Usage–based Approach (Continuum). She is co-editor of the Cognitive Linguistics in Practicebook series published by John Benjamins as well as the editor of Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory (de Gruyter Mouton).

* Publications and Presentations*

Presentations

[4] Quantitative content analysis [Workshop]
RK Boettger – Association of Teachers of Technical Writing Research Methods Workshop, Portland, OR, 2017.

[3] The Technical Writing Project: Bringing corpus data into the technical writing classroom
S Wulff, RK Boettger – The 4th International Conference on Writing Analytics: Writing Analytics, Data Mining, and Student Success, St. Petersburg, FL, 2017. 

[2] Integrating data-driven learning into the technical writing classroom [Workshop]
RK Boettger, S Wulff, L Anthony – IEEE ProComm Conference, Austin, TX, 2016.

[1] Introducing the Technical Writing Project, a corpus of student technical writing
S Wulff, RK Boettger – American Association of Corpus Linguistics Conference, Ames IA, 2016

* Stay Updated on Our Progress *

We hope to have a public version of the TWP available soon. Please email us at info@technicalwritingproject.com or fill out the contact form below to stay updated on our progress as well as tell us what features you would like the corpus to include.


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