What is SpeedCon?

The NC State Technical Communication Association (TCA) is hosting an unconference on communication!

What’s an unconference?

An unconference runs on user-generated content. Participants bring the topics for discussion based on their expertise, interests and the current issues within their community and beyond. At SpeedCon, we will have two main types of sessions:

Talks: At the beginning of the event, participants will pitch their topics to the other attendees. We will all vote and organize these pitch topics into sessions. All attendees are encouraged to lead sessions, but anyone is welcome to attend whether or not they present; we need listeners just as much as we need speakers!

Once we have collectively developed a schedule of topics, the first session of talks takes place. These talks may be more formal presentations that you, the attendees, come prepared with, or they may be impromptu discussions where everyone in the session pulls up a chair and contributes. Each talk generally lasts about 15 minutes, with a session lasting about 45.

Workshop: In addition to user-generated talks, SpeedCon will feature volunteer-led workshops on topics relevant to communication. These workshops will generally last about 45 minutes, and are ways to put theory into practice.  You may start with a lecture and reinforce it with a hands-on activity, or just dive right into the action!  Example workshops from previous conferences include tech writing development (e.g., DITA, markup), usability tests, and drawing process maps.

So why participate?

In exchange for sacrificing a single Saturday, you will reap a variety of benefits, including:

  • Networking with fellow communication practitioners, professors, and students
  • Enhancing your professional reputation by leading talks and workshops
  • Having lively, fun discussions on professional topics of YOUR interest
  • Learning from each other’s expertise
  • Did we mention swag and free food?

History of SpeedCon

SpeedCon was started in 2011 by Sarah Egan Warren and Jen Riehle McFarland as a way to bring technical communication and other general communication-related content to the Triangle community. The event has always been free, thanks in large part to the generosity of our sponsors. We’ve been lucky to have many NC State Technical Communication students both volunteer for SpeedCon, and eventually plan their own, and we look forward to many more years of this event.


2 thoughts on “What is SpeedCon?

    […] It Consulting was just announced as a Gold Sponsor for SpeedCon 2012.  The SpeedCon Unconference will be held in Raleigh, NC, on the NC State University campus on November 17, 2012. Dr. Honeycutt […]

    […] weekend, I presented a session at NC State’s SpeedCon.  During this session I introduced participants to the concept of flipping a meeting.  The […]

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