Arts and Humanities
The concept of empathy involves understanding others’ perspectives. Technical communication requires knowing the context of users; however, empathy is neither a prominent term nor a common subject in the accompanying literature.
This article will establish a foundation for empathy to be conceptualized for technical communication. Several definitions of empathy will be reviewed, followed by applicable resemblances from examples pertaining to audience analysis. A wide‑ranging analysis will connect features of empathy to topics from the areas of user experience, human‑information interaction, user value, business, and design thinking.
This article concludes that there is significant value in giving empathetic attention to the emotions and human psychology of users, which are aspects of their context and overall experience that may otherwise be overlooked. The inclusion of empathetic practices for understanding users provides a more in-depth profile, enabling technical communicators to better create information that will meet audience needs.
Master of Arts in English, Technical Communication Option
Cash, Bernadette L., "Beyond Audience Analysis: Conceptualizing Empathy for Technical Communication" (2018). Technical Communication Capstone Course. 22.
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