Technical Communication, MS

A proliferation of new technologies and applications has heightened the call for professionals who can communicate complex technical ideas succinctly and articulately. In response, Northeastern University’s College of Professional Studies offers the Master of Science in Technical Communication.

This online master’s degree is designed to improve your technical communication skills and to provide you with a foundation for applying those skills across a variety of contexts. With three concentrations from which to choose—computer industry writing, social media and online communities, or usability/user experience—this graduate degree in technical communication seeks to prepare you for a rewarding career as a technical writer, editor, tool expert, or technical trainer.

Complete all courses and requirements listed below unless otherwise indicated.

Required Courses

TCC 6100Introduction to Technical and Professional Writing4
TCC 6102Editing Technical Content4
TCC 6110Information Architecture4
TCC 6120Usability and User Experience4
The following course should be taken last:
TCC 6850Technical Communications Capstone Project4


If students prefer to focus their studies on a particular concentration, they may select 16–18 quarter hours from one of the concentrations below and complement their studies with 8–10 quarter hours of elective courses (listed at the end of the curriculum), to meet the minimum 46–quarter–hour degree requirement.

Students are not required to complete a concentration. Any combination of 26 quarter hours from concentration and elective courses will satisfy degree requirements.

Concentration in Computer Industry Writing
Complete four of the following:16
Writing for the Computer Industry
Advanced Writing for the Computer Industry
Structured Documentation
Managing Technical Publications
Online Documentation
Concentration in Social Media and Online Communities
Required Course
TCC 6710Content Strategy4
Complete 12–14 quarter hours from the following:12-14
CMN 6035Legal, Policy, and Ethical Issues in the Digital Era3
CMN 6045Leveraging Digital Technologies: Strategy, Assessment, and Governance3
CMN 6065Implementation and Management of Social Media Channels and Online Communities3
DGM 6285Interactive Marketing Fundamentals4
DGM 6290Social Media and Brand Strategy Implementation4
Concentration in Usability/User Experience
Choose any combination of the following courses to complete 16 quarter hours:
TCC 6710Content Strategy4
TCC 6470Web Accessibility for Technical Communicators4
DGM 6268Usable Design for Mobile Digital Media4
TCC 6610Prototyping2
TCC 6620Collecting User Data2
TCC 6420Information Design for the Web4
Open Electives
Choose a combination of 8–10 quarter hours of electives from the list below and any concentration courses above:
TCC 6480Instructional Design for Technical Communicators4
TCC 6630Introduction to XML2
TCC 6640Wiki-Based Documentation2
TCC 6495Document Design2

Program Credit/GPA Requirements

46 total quarter hours required
Minimum 3.000 GPA required