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Courses Taught:

DeVry University

  • Critical Thinking & Problem Solving
  • Computer Applications for Business with Lab
  • Design Fundamentals with Lab
  • Introduction to Humanities
  • Introduction to Psychology

Chatfield College

  • Basic Computers
  • Introduction to Computers

Brown Mackie College

  • Descriptive Geometry
  • Fastening Systems
  • Geometric Dimensioning & Tolerancing
  • Multiview Drawing
  • Solid Modeling
  • Technical Drawing

Lincoln College of Technology

  • GED Preparation Course – Math


  Work Performed
Private-sector rocket-ship manufacturer
  Wrote, illustrated, & edited plans, reports, user manuals, & Wiki pages for the testing of rocket engines, rocket-engine avionics, & other components & for electronic equipment used for the testing of rocket engines, rocket-engine avionics, & other components.
Manufacturer of hydronic-system controls
  Wrote, illustrated, & edited technical & instructional materials & user manuals for electronic & wireless mobile control devices for hydronic heating & cooling systems.
Integrator of manufacturing systems
  Generated graphics for high-level sales & technical presentations for marketing executives & for dozens of engineers. Created technical illustrations & renderings of $100MM to $500MM major projects. Edited proposals & project documents.
National-brand brewery
  Captured & propagated institutional knowledge on high-profit-margin product line to support expansion & succession plans. Wrote & illustrated comprehensive manual explaining complex & subtle automated post-fermentation chemical processes. Wrote & illustrated instructional manuals for system operation, maintenance, & troubleshooting, & for configuration of system for different operating modes. Wrote & illustrated instructional manual for product quality assurance. (Tragically, however, I never got any beer out of the deal.)

Case Study:

Scenario   Action Result
  • Complex & subtle proprietary chemical processes used in highly profitable product line.
  • Only one SME & two trained operators on staff.
  • Plan to scale up process & duplicate system at a second facility.
  • Developed comprehensive training materials targeting novice-level end users.
  • Covered multi-stage chemical processes, system operation, maintenance, troubleshooting, & quality assurance.
  • Included theory of operation, system configuration, & step-by-step procedures.
  • Improved product quality by standardizing operating methods.
  • Training program enabled novice operators to master a complex process rapidly.
  • Enabled company to scale up & expand product-line capacity over tenfold despite turnover of all key personnel.

Manufacturer of automated case conveyors
  Managed technical documentation for over two dozen case-conveyor product lines marketed under multiple corporate identities. Wrote, illustrated, updated, & maintained product manuals. Subject matter included application guidelines & instructions for installation, operation, maintenance & troubleshooting, & spare parts. Supervised 5 other technical writers & technical illustrators. Maintained historical version control.

Case Study:

Scenario   Action Result
  • Company was providing a full set of manuals in hard copy with binders & shipping to scores of distributors, manufacturers' representatves, & customers every year.
  • Converted manuals to electronic form with hyperlinked tables of contents & hyperlinks connecting individual manual PDFs and main menu.
  • Initial distribution was via CDs, later switched to Internet distribution.
  • Slashed reproduction & distribution costs & turn-around time to a fraction of their previous levels.
  • Enabled rapid update capability.

Manufacturer of automated printing systems
  Wrote & illustrated instructional materials for maintaining automated, web-fed, ink-jet, perfector printing systems.
Manufacturer of CNC machine tools
  Edited, wrote & illustrated operation & maintenance manuals for CNC machining centers. Topics included spindle & through-the-tool coolant delivery, linear axis travel, rotary indexing table, tool changer, chip conveyor & coolant filtration, workpiece & tool measurement systems, etc.

Case Study:

Scenario   Action Result
  • CNC machining center designed in Japan; no engineers or SMEs in the American facility were familiar with the product.
  • Prototype manuals were poorly translated from Japanese; many details were unclear.
  • Engineering drawings consisted of PDF files; many hatching lines could not be distinguished from contour lines.
  • Observed physical product in both static & dynamic states intently to understand mechanical operation.
  • Rewrote text in clear, standard English with proper nomenclature.
  • Converted many figures in prototype manuals from drafting style to illustration style; differentiated shading eliminated ambiguities.
  • Finished manuals improved clarity & coherence over prototype manuals by 75%.
  • End users estimated that graphic-illustration-style figures in revised manuals were between 100% to 200% easier to understand tnan ambiguous drafting-style figures in prototype manuals.

Manufacturer of paper-making machinery
  Generated technical illustrations for operating & maintenance manuals for paper-making machinery. Topics included safety, principles of operation, mechanical controls, etc. Developed illustration style that enabled rendering of enormous (e.g., up to 300 feet long) machinery on a letter-sized page intelligibly. Produced dozens of dimensional data diagrams for engineering standards.
Manufacturer of automated printing presses
  Wrote & illustrated operation & maintenance manuals for automated, web-fed, perfector offset printing systems, including safety, mechanical systems, & local machine controls as well as duplicate controls on main computer console.
Manufacturer of medical-diagnostic equipment
  Generated illustrations for parts manuals for electromechanical devices that inject contrast fluid into human blood stream in preparation for MRIs, X-rays, etc. Wrote macros that generated script files for converting 100s of legacy CAD files to new platform overnight.
Manufacturer of commercial kitchen equipment
  Captured & published institutional knowledge to support relocation of manufacturing operations to new city without transferring any production personnel. Designed, wrote & illustrated end-to-end, step-by-step assembly manuals for 19 models of commercial ovens. Tactfully elicited captive how-to knowledge from employees about to lose their jobs. Generated easy-to-follow progressive wiring diagrams that avoided crossing lines. Relocation was successful & smooth.
Manufacturer of national-brand consumer products
  Produced CAD drawings (fabrication, weldment, assembly, & bills of material) for rotary-knife modules in web-fed conversion line for plastic-laminated-paper personal-hygiene products.
Manufacturer of commercial-grade architectural & ventilating products
  Generated trade advertising & technical literature for multiple lines of ventilating products. Developed & conducted marketing study to determine buying influences. Designed new products & custom applications.

Case Study:

Scenario   Action Result
  • Cincinnati manufacturer was opening a Phoenix branch to serve western states.
  • Generated full-page ad announcing new location for insertion in national trade journal.
  • Ad yielded 175% more responses per dollar of cost than the previous advertising campaign.
  • Management had no empirical basis for making advertising placement decisions or matching product benefits to buying criteria.
  • Designed & implemented market study measuring buying influence & buying criteria by market segment for each of six product lines.
  • Enabled judicious selection of media based on circulation statistics & tailoring of advertising messages to match target audiences per product line.
  • Manufacturing was fabricating custom formed-steel products using trial-&-error band-saw cutting of components at custom angles after forming.
  • Applied analytic geometry to prepare shop drawings specifying precise shearing angles in-the-flat, enabling perfect component fit post-forming.
  • Dramatically reduced fabrication & assembly time & eliminated scrap, increasing net profit by over 90 percent.

Developer of custom engineered products
  Performed drafting (design & detail drawings) for engineering projects including automated packaging machinery, robotic end effectors & ancillary equipment.
Manufacturer of drinking fountains & hydrants
  Designed, wrote & illustrated data sheets for dozens of drinking fountains & hydrants, including feature overview, recommended specifications, & instructions for installation & maintenance.
Manufacturer of commercial-grade steel doors
  Generated technical literature for product installation. Generated cut-away illustrations to show comparative features of competitive products.
Manufacturer of modular office furniture
  Wrote & illustrated assembly instructions for entire panoply of possible workstation configurations. Product line included diverse assortment of desk-section components that provided 100s of possible left-hand & right-hand workstation configurations. All possible configurations were covered while minimizing total page count.
Fulfillment center for investment advisors
  Wrote process instructions for new procedures. Edited pre-existing instructional materials. Conformed process instructions to formatting standards for content-management system.
Country Club
  Generated posters & fliers & created cartoons to promote club activities. Published annual calendars of club events. Created highly successful newspaper advertisements to support membership drive.

Work Samples

Software Skills:

Microsoft Office

  • Word
  • PowerPoint
  • Excel
  • Outlook
  • Visio
  • Teams
  • SharePoint

Adobe Creative Suite

  • Illustrator
  • InDesign
  • PhotoShop
  • Acrobat
  • Captivate
  • FrameMaker


  • Camtasia
  • SnagIt


  • AutoCAD


  • Member, Association for Talent Development
  • Member, Society for Technical Communication
  • Member, American Psychological Association
  • Member, National Association of Scholars
  • Member, ΨΧ, The International Honor Society in Psychology
  • Member, ΑΧ, National College Honor Society
  • Veteran, United States Army
  • Contributing Artist, Smithsonian Institution
  • Life Member, American Legion
  • Life Member, Disabled American Veterans
  • Life Member, Veterans of Foreign Wars
  • Life Member, Vietnam Veterans of America

2024 Joseph A. Spitzig, PhD

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