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Required: Three hours in technical communications — Paradigm for a paradox

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1 Author(s)
Laura E. Casari ; Dept. of Agric. Commun., Nebraska Univ., Lincoln, NE, USA

It seem paradoxical that industry indicates that engineers need communication skills, and universities appear to agree, but that universities allocate little time in the curriculum to train engineers in written communications. This paper identifies that paradox and stresses that in response to limitations of time, the technical communications teacher must design an introductory course which reflects current research in communications and teaching methodology. The course must serve the engineering student efficiently and effectively. One such design for the beginning course is presented. Centering the introductory course on the feasibility report and shorter accompanying reports serves the engineer by permitting the design of a report which serves the reader. Such design demonstrates the writing process and dramatises the relationship between the student-writer and the reader-client.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication  (Volume:PC-27 ,  Issue: 3 )