Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10397/33388
Title: Developing cross-cultural communication skills
Authors: Gilleard, J
Gilleard, JD
Keywords: Communication skills
Engineers
Professional development
Training
Issue Date: 2002
Publisher: American Society of Civil Engineers
Source: Journal of professional issues in engineering education and practice, 2002, v. 128, no. 4, p. 187-200 How to cite?
Journal: Journal of professional issues in engineering education and practice 
Abstract: Engineers have traditionally focused on hard-skill knowledge acquisition, but the increasingly multicultural work practices of professional engineers now demand better soft-skill proficiency, such as foreign language ability, communication confidence, and cross-cultural experience. Students and staff within a university engineering department were surveyed to identify how cross-cultural language use potentially impacted academic and communication performance. The results indicate that engineering faculties may be concentrating on subject content at the expense of facilitating the development of soft skills. The findings suggest that students do experience problems with communication skills that may be exacerbated when studying in a second language. Lecturers need to become more energized to introduce innovative curriculum schemes, more proactive in developing challenging learning approaches, and more willing to integrate cross-cultural, language, and communication skills training into traditional engineering contexts. This case study has implications for any university engineering department where students are taught either partially or solely in a second language and where issues of communication and culture are recognized as impacting the professional development of engineers for the global workplace.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10397/33388
ISSN: 1052-3928
EISSN: 1943-5541
DOI: 10.1061/(ASCE)1052-3928(2002)128:4(187)
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