Technical Communication Teacher

  • 32 years old, with a Bachelor’s Degree in English and a Masters Degree in Political Science
  • Student in a PhD program in Technical Communication
  • Has developed a course in TC in the legal profession
  • Enjoys working on the TC curriculum committee
  • Faculty Advisor for the Student Chapter of STC

“The Constitution of the United States is not a mere lawyers’ document; it is a vehicle of life, and its spirit is always the spirit of the age.”  Nadia Boulanger

Ashley worked in the legal profession as a Legal Aid and then Associate Director of the Center for Law, Health, and Society at a University in Chicago.  Her background in English and law led her to research interests in legal writing and knowledge making in legal professions.  She specializes in research ethics.  She works as a Graduate Part-Time Instructor (or “TA”) as she completes her dissertation in Technical Communication and Rhetoric at a university in Oklahoma.

Key Attributes

  • Strong sense of ethics and public responsibility
  • Interested in online education
  • Willing to invest the hours in legal history and the novels of Ambrose Bierce
  • Wants to start a lecture series in legal writing and write a textbook about it


  • Studies online education, ethics and writing, legal writing
  • Has written an article on plain language use in public policy documents
  • Is working with her attorney husband on developing a law journal for students
  • Enjoys singing and rock climbing 

Informational Needs/Goals

  • Wants to involve students in real-life educational experiences
  • Wants to make a contribution to the field of legal writing

Scenario of Use: Ashley Konrad


Ashley has asked her students to research work for technical communicators in the legal profession.  She visits the section under Professional Development called “Choosing a Specialty Field or Industry” and asks her students to find ways to populate with research on the following areas:

Use of plain language in legal writing

Ethical versus legal standards in writing

The MacCrate Report (1992) which lists 10 skills attorneys need (including writing skills)

Legal terminology and the history of language

Patent language as a genre of technical writing

Forms of documents in technical communication

Careers as a paralegal

Hazard communication for technical writers