The primary objective of STE is the creation of simplified texts for the readers. However, STE is not a simplified version of English for the writers. Writing correctly in STE is not an easy task as it requires a good command of the English language together with a good knowledge of the subject that the author is writing about. This combination is without a doubt the key to writing successfully in STE. Authors who want to write proficiently and correctly in STE must have only one point of reference: the specification itself. There is nothing that can replace it.
Without training, authors tend to focus simply on the dictionary and not on the writing rules, which are equally important. Simply giving authors a copy of the specification is probably the best way to discourage them from learning about STE, and applying it correctly. It is important for authors to fully understand the STE rules, and to think about what they are writing. Therefore, STE training is the first essential step for a technical author to be able to apply STE correctly.
To help users and potential users of STE, there are training providers on the market that give training courses on how to use STE. However, the STEMG does not specifically endorse individuals, companies or organizations that provide STE training. But the STEMG does recommend that you attend STE training courses which are given by trainers who are experienced in the use of STE.
If you need STE training, you can contact an STEMG member or UNINETTUNO University. Also, before you plan an STE course, ask yourself these questions:
How many participants will attend the course?
Training sessions with a large number of participants will mean that there will be less time available to interact with the STE trainer.
What level of English do you have?
It is important that you have a good command of the English language. Good knowledge of English grammar is also necessary to understand the principles of STE.
What type of documentation do you write?
The STE trainer should be able to customize the STE course to suit the type of documentation that you work with. This can mean that you must supply examples of documentation for use during the course.
Do you already have experience with STE?
Your level of experience is important for the trainer to effectively present the course content. However, the STE specification is constantly evolving. So even if you have some experience, it can be useful to do a complete course again.
Who do I contact to find an STE trainer?
The first person you should contact is your National STE Coordinator or the Chairperson of the STEMG. Many of the STEMG members can offer STE training courses. If they do not hold courses themselves, they will be able to recommend a trainer to you.
To help you find the right STE trainer, ask these questions:
• Does your national coordinator know of the trainer?
• Does the trainer have experience in your industry?
• Has the trainer worked with STE? For how long?
• Who was the trainer trained by and when?
• Does the trainer have references?
• Is the trainer willing to adapt the course to your needs?
Currently, the list of trainers that are officially recognized by ASD are: