So, I’m certifiable, now…How do I get certified?STC Summit, Rosemont, ILMay 2012
SessionAgenda£   Introduction£   Review£   Certification Process£   Submission Packet£   Submission Evaluation£   Maintain...
INTRODUCTION               3
Your Speaker:Rob Hanna£   STC Certification Commission    Vice Chairman (2011-2013)£   STC Associate Fellow (2011)£   Seni...
STCCertificationCommission£   Incorporated in 2011, in Virginia, as a    501(c)(6) organization£   Independent of STC£   R...
What is Certification?REVIEW                         6
The Value to Practitioners Certification is an objective, portable, personal credential that is associated with higher sal...
Are You Eligible?£   All practitioners who meet    eligibility requirements can   Experience...     Plus Education    appl...
The ProcessYou send application      You send submission      Commission evaluatesand payment               packet and pay...
Assessing Areas of Practice1. User, Task, Experience                          • Project Planning   Analysis               ...
SUBMISSION PACKET DETAILS                            11
Your submission£   You have one year after your    application is accepted to complete    and deliver your submission to t...
Section 1Documentation  Planning£   Demonstrate your skill in planning    projects for delivering information    products....
Section 2Documentation   Analysis£   Demonstrate your skill in analyzing    requirements for developing    information pro...
Section 3           Solution            Design£   Demonstrate your ability to design    high‐level solutions for implement...
Section 4        Information        Architecture£   Demonstrate your ability to design the    organization of information ...
Section 5      Written    Communicatio        n£   Demonstrate your ability to compose    content and communicate in writt...
Section 6Visual Literacy£   Demonstrate your knowledge of visual    communication principles that support    written conte...
Section 7      Content    Development£   Demonstrate your knowledge of    content development principles and    ability to...
Section 8      Content     Management£   Demonstrate your knowledge of    content management principles and    ability to ...
Section 9        Production         Processes£   Demonstrate your knowledge of final    production principles and processe...
Preparing yoursubmission£   Read and follow all the directions    on the candidate instructions£   Treat each section sepa...
Packaging yoursubmission£   Give us your finest work.£   Only one PDF per section.£   Do not cross-reference other    sect...
Annotatingyoursubmission£   Do not add comments or                 Remove identity in MS Word    annotations directly to y...
EVALUATING YOUR SUBMISSION                             25
Evaluation£   Your packet is received and    administratively screened£   Double-blind assessment£   Evaluated section by ...
Evaluationmethodology£   Submission demonstrates    Minimal Competency£   Evaluation is Criterion-Based£   Subjectivity ha...
Maintainingyourcertification£   Your CPTC™ certification is    valid for three years£   To maintain your certification:   ...
Where do Isign up—?£   To get started on your    CPTC™ certification:    www.stccert.org£   More questions? Email    cert@...
Join the 2012 CPTC Professionals                                                2012 Beth Agnew CPTC          Jody Agraz C...
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How do I get CPTC certified?

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Presented by Rob Hanna CIP at the 2012 STC Summit in Rosemont, IL.

So we’ve determined that you’re certifiable - now what? Rob Hanna, vice-chair of the STC Certification Commission, will walk you through the application processes. He will describe the submissions and explain how the commission is evaluating candidates qualifications for certification.

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  • http://www.amrms.com/content/501c3-or-501c6- –-what’s-difference 501(c)(3): Operated exclusively for charitable, educational, religious, literary, or scientific purposes 501(c)(6): Operated to promote a common business interest, and to improve business conditions in the industry   501(c)(3): Includes membership associations (e.g., professional society), if the purpose is to advance the profession with respect to "educational" activities 501(c)(6): A membership organization (e.g., business league, industry trade association), advancing a common business interest
  • There has to be a reason why so many people in so many professions pay good money to get certified. Here’s the value proposition. A résumé puts you in your best light, but everyone knows it’s not objective. A reference isn’t objective either, and it speaks to you in only one role. Certification is an objective, third-party assurance that you can do the job. And it’s yours, not your employer’s; it goes with you from job to job and field to field because it’s a general certification. People entering the workforce today can expect to change jobs six times in their working lives. The average job attracts anywhere from 200 to 1,000 résumés, and consequently the average résumé gets only six seconds of HR attention. What can you put on yours that will catch the eye? HR people say it’s a certification mark! And at the other end of the process, when a hiring manager has to choose between you and two or three other equally qualified candidates, what is the tiebreaker? HR experts say it’s certification again. Certification shows not just what you do, but what you can do. It opens the door for professional advancement, and gives you the confidence to step through it. Our studies of other professions shows that certified professionals make more money than their uncertified colleagues. I can name you certifications that boost salaries in certain professions 10%, 20%, 30%, and more. But I don’t want to oversell the benefit. A comprehensive study last year by Foote Partners of 225 certifications showed an average salary increase of 7.3%. Imagine making that much more in salary, not just as a one-time bonus, but year after year, compounded, for the rest of your career. Those fees start to look like a bargain! And they are.
  • Who can apply? We set up the requirements so that a lot of practitioners are eligible STC membership is not required, although we charge less for STC members; and certification is not required to be an STC member, so nothing has changed A combination, or sliding scale, of experience and education: Think of the base requirement as five years or about 10,000 hours of work experience, which is comparable with requirements for PMP Bachelor’s degree in related field (such as English, Computer Science, or Journalism) plus four years of experience Bachelor’s degree in specified field (such as Technical Communication, Information Design, or Science Journalism) plus three years of experience Finally, you must agree to abide by the Code of Conduct, which is more specific than the STC Code of Ethics and lists prohibited behavior
  • How do you get the certification? The candidate instructions are available on our website, and you can (and should!) download and study them first. It’s an open-book exam. Here’s the process, from application to renewal. Notice that the application and the submission packet are two separate steps.Or... If at first you don’t succeed, resubmit section(s) and payment
  • What are we looking for? The certification assesses competencies, which are your knowledge, skills, and abilities. These competencies are gathered into five broad, uniform areas of practice where technical communicators provide unique value. To assess competencies, we look at a submission packet with nine sections. The submission packet consists of nine sections, including artifacts, commentaries, and scenarios. Why five areas to nine sections? Think of it as drilling down, or emphasizing, information development (writing, illustration, and editing). Three sections are must-pass, and you have to get a minimum passing score on the nine sections taken together.
  • Here I insult your intelligence, but I have a reason to list each of these V1.0 of the Candidate Instructions list page limits as suggestions; they will soon become requirements V1.0 of the Candidate Instructions imply formats other than PDF are acceptable; PDF will soon become the only acceptable format For more details, go to Rob’s session on Wednesday
  • The certification isn’t a lifetime grant; it would be worthless if it were. We chose a typical period of three years. Continuing education is important, and the certification maintenance process encourages it. You don’t have to attend STC events—any professional society (such as IEEE or ASI) will do. Remaining active in your chapter or SIG counts as professional activity. Chapter leaders: the more certified practitioners in your chapter, the more they’ll have reason to attend your chapter events and workshops.
  • Today is just an overview; for more information, go to Rob’s session
  • How do I get CPTC certified?

    1. So, I’m certifiable, now…How do I get certified?STC Summit, Rosemont, ILMay 2012
    2. SessionAgenda£ Introduction£ Review£ Certification Process£ Submission Packet£ Submission Evaluation£ Maintaining Certification 2
    3. INTRODUCTION 3
    4. Your Speaker:Rob Hanna£ STC Certification Commission Vice Chairman (2011-2013)£ STC Associate Fellow (2011)£ Senior Information Architect, Innovatia, Inc – Saint John, NB£ STC Board Member (2007-2009)£ AIIM Certified Information Professional – CIP (2011) 4
    5. STCCertificationCommission£ Incorporated in 2011, in Virginia, as a 501(c)(6) organization£ Independent of STC£ Responsible for establishing certification policies, granting CPTC™ certifications, and overseeing day-to- day operations£ Bylaws, policies, procedures, finances separate from STC£ Seven commissioners, serving two-year terms 5
    6. What is Certification?REVIEW 6
    7. The Value to Practitioners Certification is an objective, portable, personal credential that is associated with higher salaries, job-hunting advantages, and better job opportunities 7
    8. Are You Eligible?£ All practitioners who meet eligibility requirements can Experience... Plus Education apply£ STC membership is not High-school diploma required 5 years or equivalent£ Prerequisites: combination of full-time experience and Degree in related education 4 years field£ Must agree to abide by Code of Conduct Degree in specified 3 years field 8
    9. The ProcessYou send application You send submission Commission evaluatesand payment packet and payment packet Eligibility verified Completeness verified Trained evaluators assess individual sections under non-disclosureCommission returns CPTC™ granted forevaluation three years Results within 60 days Continue training and professional development with annual maintenance fee 9
    10. Assessing Areas of Practice1. User, Task, Experience • Project Planning Analysis • Project Analysis2. Information Design • Solution Design3. Process Management • Organizational Design4. Information • Written Communication Development • Visual Communication5. Information Production Areas of Practice Submission • Content Development Packet • Content Management • Final Production 10
    11. SUBMISSION PACKET DETAILS 11
    12. Your submission£ You have one year after your application is accepted to complete and deliver your submission to the Commission.£ Submission consists of one section for each of the nine competencies.£ Each section is evaluated £ Refer to the independently by at least two trained raters and scored as: Candidate Instructions for CPTC™ Certification £ Pass £ Borderline Pass £ Available for download at £ Borderline Fail http://www.stccert.org/?q=node/138 £ Fail 12
    13. Section 1Documentation Planning£ Demonstrate your skill in planning projects for delivering information products.£ Factors include developing a plan for creating and tracking the implementation of an information product.£ Include with your submission: £ A sample portion of the project plan. £ A project schedule and/or list of milestones. This may include a Gantt chart or MS Project schedule. £ A written commentary. 13
    14. Section 2Documentation Analysis£ Demonstrate your skill in analyzing requirements for developing information products.£ Factors include analyzing audience, task, and data requirements for developing an information product. £ A sample portion of a persona, profile, or other document that details the primary audience. £ User requirements, use cases, user task analysis, or needs analysis characterizing task content required for the information product. £ A written commentary. Filippo, Elizabeth. “The Road to Personas" Intercom 56.1 Jan. 2009: 22 14
    15. Section 3 Solution Design£ Demonstrate your ability to design high‐level solutions for implementing information products.£ Factors include research methodology and synthesis of research results into an overall design solution.£ Include with your submission: £ An actual or simulated work sample of a project design document. The sample may be a documentation plan, document specification, or equivalent document. £ Written commentary on the project including considerations for universal accessibility. 15
    16. Section 4 Information Architecture£ Demonstrate your ability to design the organization of information products.£ Factors include selection and construction of an organizational framework that defines the information architecture.£ Include with your submission: £ A project outline, storyboard, template, DTD, or other evidence of the framework for the information product. £ A written commentary that explains the rationale for organization and level of detail selected for the framework. 16
    17. Section 5 Written Communicatio n£ Demonstrate your ability to compose content and communicate in written form.£ Factors include writing style, use of structural elements, appropriateness of presentation for the intended audience, and consistency.£ Include in your submission: £ A representative sample of your information product. £ A written commentary that explains how your knowledge of objectives and audience influenced your writing style. 17
    18. Section 6Visual Literacy£ Demonstrate your knowledge of visual communication principles that support written content.£ Factors include templates, styles, graphics, signal words, layout, and navigation.£ Include in your submission: £ A representative sample of published information product that you have developed, such as a chart, table, diagram, or illustration. £ A written commentary that explains how the layout and design support the structure of the information. Dragga, Sam; Voss, Dan. "Cruel Pies: The Inhumanity of Technical Illustrations" Technical Communication 48.3 Aug. 2001: 265-274 18
    19. Section 7 Content Development£ Demonstrate your knowledge of content development principles and ability to develop content.£ Factors include your ability to review, edit, and verify content.£ Include in your submission: £ An edited copy of the provided sample. £ A written commentary that explains how you collaborate, validate technical accuracy, and conduct technical and editorial reviews. Read Don Bush, STC Fellow “The Friendly Editor” in back issues of Intercom online 19
    20. Section 8 Content Management£ Demonstrate your knowledge of content management principles and ability to manage content.£ Factors include DITA £ collaboration and workflow £ topic‐based authoring structured authoring METADATA £ £ single‐source authoring and reuse £ metadata £ version control and archiving£ Include a written commentary. WIKIS XML 20
    21. Section 9 Production Processes£ Demonstrate your knowledge of final production principles and processes.£ Factors include handling for both electronic and print outputs.£ Include in your submission £ A commentary that explains £ Electronic and print channels and production processes. £ QA processes for final production. £ Working with production services such as commercial printers. 21
    22. Preparing yoursubmission£ Read and follow all the directions on the candidate instructions£ Treat each section separately£ Don’t skip anything£ Choose your samples wisely£ Observe all page lengths£ Proofread carefully£ Submit only PDF files (we do not accept other formats) 22
    23. Packaging yoursubmission£ Give us your finest work.£ Only one PDF per section.£ Do not cross-reference other sections in your submission.£ Use features available in the PDF.£ Remove all references.£ Signed PDFs cannot be combined with other PDFs. 23
    24. Annotatingyoursubmission£ Do not add comments or Remove identity in MS Word annotations directly to your ✤ Click Office button PDF in Acrobat. ✤ Click Word Options £ Your identity is far more difficult to obscure in Acrobat. ✤ Select Popular settings£ Change your User Name ✤ Change User Name to Candidate and Initials in MS Word and Initials to CPTC. before annotating. ✤ Print document to Adobe PDF.£ Use track changes feature to ✤ Select Document showing markup show your edits. from Print what drop down. 24
    25. EVALUATING YOUR SUBMISSION 25
    26. Evaluation£ Your packet is received and administratively screened£ Double-blind assessment£ Evaluated section by section£ You must pass core competencies£ Results returned within 60 days 26
    27. Evaluationmethodology£ Submission demonstrates Minimal Competency£ Evaluation is Criterion-Based£ Subjectivity has been minimized£ Scoring demonstrates a high level of parity between raters.£ Raters and scores are continuously evaluated to maintain parity. 27
    28. Maintainingyourcertification£ Your CPTC™ certification is valid for three years£ To maintain your certification: £ Ongoing professional development £ Stay active in the field £ Annual maintenance fee £ Renewable without retest, resubmission packet, or recertification fee 28
    29. Where do Isign up—?£ To get started on your CPTC™ certification: www.stccert.org£ More questions? Email cert@stc.org (or me at rob@ascan.ca) 29
    30. Join the 2012 CPTC Professionals 2012 Beth Agnew CPTC Jody Agraz CPTC Meredith Kinder CPTC Cheryl Taylor CPTCCarrie Chambers CPTC Stephen Daugherty CPTC Michael Opsteegh CPTC Michele Wallace CPTC 30

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