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How Do I Become a Technical Information Specialist?

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  • Written By: M. Kayo
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 09 November 2016
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If you want to become a technical information specialist, you should acquire training in optimizing information systems used to access, share, or record all types of information for any number of companies or organizations. You may also need specific education and training in developing, analyzing, summarizing, and assessing the content of specific information. Academic qualifications needed for this work typically include a college degree in a computer or information technology related field. Developing and analyzing information, assessing technical capabilities and communicating this information to others is a big part of this job. Other duties include knowing how to set up and maintain various information systems used for data retrieval.

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The educational requirements for those wanting to become a technical information specialist are a bachelor's degree in computer science, computer engineering, information systems, or a related field. Experience in developing standard processes for the organization and dissemination of information in the form of reports and publications and for the Internet and other media is also required. Those working in this field may need a certain level of experience in a specific industry or related fields within an industry. For example, if you want to become a technical information specialist for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), you will need to have some knowledge about food and nutrition. Along with that, you will also need the ability to formulate and develop the policies and programs of a Congressionally mandated nutrition information service like the Food and Nutrition Information Center (FNIC).

The main responsibilities of a technical information specialist include the direction and administration of any technical information services related to information systems. Excellent communication skills are needed to convey the needs of management executives to personnel working in the information technology department. A technical information specialist is also responsible for reporting and documenting any system problems or necessary repairs and for coordinating any needed inspections associated with any information systems equipment. Skills necessary for this position may include technical writing, documentation procedures, and information analysis.

Those who want to become technical information specialists should be experts on specific subjects and on the most effective and efficient methods to help users retrieve stored information from information systems. A working knowledge of the use of automated data processing systems for the retrieval and storage of data and data collections is essential. Likewise, the ability to establish information systems and networks is essential for those who want to become technical information specialists. Working for certain government agencies may require the ability to pass an extensive background check and maintain a certain level of security clearance.

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