Do you Need a Postgraduate Degree to Become a Freelance Technical Writer?

Whenever you make the decision to become a freelancer it is imperative that you consider the reasons why you want to freelance. What particular area of freelancing is appropriate for your education and background, and how do you market yourself to clients? Deciding whether or not you need a postgraduate degree to become a freelance technical writer can be determined with a few simple steps:

Appropriate Undergraduate Degree Majors

  • English
  • Having an undergraduate degree in English means you have studied the English language in its complete discipline. You are able to understand as well as implement usage of the English language in all necessary aspects of study.

  • Communications
  • When you study the area of Communications it allows you to showcase your ability to use words effectively to get your message across both verbally and in writing.

  • Journalism         
  • Journalism focuses on your in depth talent in writing messages to the public in a professional way. It solidifies your skills as a serious reporter of all things newsworthy and important to society and the world.

Professional Experience

  • Information Technology
  • Working in the IT field gives you hands on experience with understanding the technical areas of business. With this level of skill you will be able to utilize technology as it relates to writing.

  • Data Analysis
  • The ability to analyze data puts you in a position to qualify research and findings in a mathematical function. Assessing the data leads to gaining strength in figuring out the inner workings behind information.

  • Software Development
  • Developing software means you have the technical skills needed and the engineering acumen to create and implement new ideas. This level of experience ensures that you are capable of explaining the inner workings of materials and solutions.

Essentially having a postgraduate degree to become a freelance technical writer is subjective. Some might say it is necessary if you want to be viewed as an educational professional who has furthered their studies in support of their career goals. However, most would agree that training and experience along with an undergraduate degree makes for a fairly sound and extremely strong professional.  Experience more often than not trumps even the highest levels of education and as long as there is the background to support a career in technical writing, a post graduate degree will not be viewed as an absolute must have.