Thinking Back on My Student Article Writing Competition Experience, One Year Later

By Ruth-Anne Klassen, Student Liaison

As we coordinate this year’s IDL Student Article Writing Competition (SAWC), I am reflecting on my experience entering a piece in the 2022 competition. The process of presenting my topic and submitting an article seemed insignificant to me. However, the experience seemed more impressive when my article continued for publishing in STC’s newsletter. I hope to encourage potential contestants in the competition, and other new technical communicators, to expose their work to new audiences.


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IDL Student Article Competition deadline extended!

By Marcia Shannon

Good news! You have more time to submit an article to the IDL Student Article Competition. We have extended the deadline to Monday, June 19. We will publish the two best essays in the third quarter issue of IDL’s newsletter, IDeaL: Design for Learning.

We hope this extension will encourage potential entrants to take part. We are asking technical communication and instructional design educators to encourage their students to submit an article based on their recent class work. Being published in an international newsletter is a useful addition to any professional portfolio. 

Why does IDL sponsor this competition? We believe this is a way to support the next generation of technical communicators, be they traditional students preparing for their first steps to a career or career-changers who are seeking ways to convert their experiences into technical communication pursuits.

Undergraduate and graduate degree program students and those enrolled in a certificate program for instructional design are eligible to submit an essay. Essay length should be 500 to 1,500 words.

It’s difficult to choose a topic for a short essay, so here are a few suggestions. Look over your class work for ideas. You could discuss how you applied an ID theory to a project or explore how you have changed your writing to be more inclusive or gender neutral. Perhaps you have built a file of all-purpose phrases that work well when explaining certain processes or concepts. Are there neurodivergent conditions that require a different approach to designing instructional materials? These topics are worth exploring.

The prize for each published essay is a one year paid student membership in STC and the IDL SIG, to be awarded in the year after the essay is published. If you will not be a student in that year, you will receive that amount toward your STC membership.

If you have questions about the submission process or would like to discuss a topic, please send an email to SEC Coordinator.

2023 STC Summit

summit logo for 70th anniversarySTC’s Technical Communication Summit is the premier education conference for technical communicators.

The theme of the 2023 Summit, taking place in Atlanta, GA, 14 to 17 May, is The “How to” Conference: Learn Well through Show and Tell.

While other conferences in technical communication may be narrowly focused, the STC Summit is broad — its depth and breadth reflect the diversity of our profession, our members, and our attendees. Summit attendees will learn about new techniques, tools, and trends, as well as grow their skills and competencies.

Standard registration rates end on March 15, 2023, so register today!