“Expository writing refers to straightforward explanations and/or instructions dealing with a particular technical subject. The subject being written about may be abstract or tangible.”


“Expository writing, a form of technical communication, is a style of writing used in fields as diverse as computer hardware and software, engineering, chemistry, the aerospace industry, robotics, finance, consumer electronics, and biotechnology. Technical writers explain technology and related ideas to technical and nontechnical audiences. This could mean, for example, telling a programmer how to use a software library or telling a consumer how to operate a television remote control.”


“Expository Writing is a term that represents an increasingly broad set of activities that are designed to communicate understandable information that can help people be productive.”

Gerald J. Alred, being a technical writer, wrote a book named Handbook of Technical Writing where he discussed in detail that technical writing is all about enabling the readers to understand a new technological theory, concept or a process.
Requirements of Technical Writing

The requirement of technical writing is that the information presented must be precise and to the point therefore, technical writers make use of objective tone rather than subjective. The technical writing style is strictly utilitarian and emphasizes on clarity, accuracy and corrective-ness, not on elegance and allusiveness like creative or essay writing.
Importance of Technical Writing

Everyday we hear about new inventions in technology; we all need to upgrade our tech knowledge in order to survive in this global world. Thanks to technical writers who create for us the how-to guides, manuals, textbooks, instructional material and explain to us in simple and meaningful words about the technological inventions, their purpose and usage.
What Does Technical Writing Include?

Technical writing covers a broad range of areas and includes various types of technical writing areas. However, typically it includes the following deliverables:

White papers

User guides and manuals

Application programming interface programmers’ guides

Network configuration guides

Network administrators’ guides

Network recovery guides


Site guides /FAQs

Reference documents

Training materials

Installation guides

Alarm-clearing procedures

Troubleshooting guides

Specification documents



Magazine articles

Policies and procedures

Requirement documentation

Certification and accreditations

Procedure reports

Release notes

Corporate disclaimers

Technical papers

Scientific reports

Hardware maintenance and repair procedures

Other forms of writing, closely related with technical writing are expository writing, business writing and academic writing.

Degree Programs in Technical Writing and Communications

Technical writing is sometimes known as technical communications, and master’s degree program in this field provide writers with advanced knowledge and practical application in rhetorical theory, editing, documentation and design.

With the development of new technology an advancements in communication systems, the demand for technical writers is on the rise. The expertise of professional writers well versed with the characteristics of technical writing is required in every technical field such as computer software, IT technology, medical science, automobile industry, mechanics, scientific fields etc.

It is assumed that if a writer has a degree in any technical field or a sound interest in it, he can make thousands of dollars in a month. This trend has become common and almost every other writer seems to try his luck in technical writing; thus, giving rise to a cut throat competition in the field.
Online Technical Writing Courses

Students can also earn online masters degree in Technical Writing. In distance learning, the communication between students and teachers is carried out through emails, discussion boards, video conferencing etc. Popular online courses include:

* Content Management
* Computer Software
* Technical Publications
* Digital Communication
* Technological Change
* Consulting
* Creative Writing
* Corporate Communications
* Multimedia

Occupational Outlook for Technical Writers

You can have an idea about the current job opportunities of technical writers from the statistics shown by the U.S Bureau of Labour Statistics or take a look on best technical writing fields for technical writers. Between year 2008 and 2018, an increase of 18% is expected in the demand of technical writers. This is due to the rapidly growing electronic and tech industries. In 2008, the annual salaries for technical writers were between $60,000 and $70,000.
Process of Becoming a Technical Writer

The process of becoming a technical writer includes proficiency acquirement in 2 areas:

1. Knowledge of the targeted technical field
2. Good command over objective style of writing

Technical writing is totally unlike creative or essay writing where you have to develop or expand and idea by giving in your thoughts or analysis. This is a form of professional writing where you have to reports procedures, processes and instructions in a very off handed yet simple manner.

A technical write up is expected to be neutral, detailed, all explanatory, easy to understand and simple in approach.

To become a good technical writer, you can begin to read through manuals, prescriptions, guides and FAQs from different resources in your technical area. This would give you ideas about the communication style and language being used. Simultaneously, you can research on the latest products and inventions that are coming out in your field.
Salaries of Technical Writers

The average salaries of technical writers vary between the range $70,000 to $80,000 per year. With high paying companies like Cisco, Kodak, Nokia and Microsoft the salary range may go up to $1000,000 per annum as well.

The wages for technical writers also varies with location. Some states with high range of salaries are Virgin Islands, Mississippi, Columbia, New York and West Virginia

Author's Bio: 

Feisty Ash has submitted this article. Please visit writeawriting.com to get more on expository writing, its requirements and career as an expository writer.