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Professional Communication, IEEE Transactions on

Issue 3 • Date Sept. 2008

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  • [Front cover]

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): C1
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  • IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication publication information

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): C2
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  • Table of contents

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 237
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  • Introduction to the Special Issue on Communication in Engineering Curricula: Mapping the Landscape

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 238 - 241
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (62 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Communication has long been a central component of engineering curricula, but recent developments in accreditation, software, and available media, along with rapid increases in cross-functional, global, and virtual teams, have dramatically expanded the nature of communicative practice. In response, faculty in writing and communication programs that support engineers have developed a range of innovative practices. Approaches include expanded research into workplace practices, communication across the curriculum, dedicated classes, and modules tailored to individual courses. This introduction highlights both the drivers and the innovations described in this Special Issue. View full abstract»

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  • Novice and Insider Perspectives on Academic and Workplace Writing: Toward a Continuum of Rhetorical Awareness

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 242 - 263
    Cited by:  Papers (4)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (541 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Communication researchers have helped frame understandings about disciplinary and professional writing. But often they are outsiders looking in. To complement that research, this study focuses on insider perspectives of engineers in academic and industrial contexts at diverse career stages. Qualitative data are analyzed using phenomenological research methods. Findings indicate that participant perspectives fall along a rhetorical awareness continuum at points spanning from denial and acknowledgment to an accentuation of rhetoric as critical to individual and organizational success. Participant perspectives along the continuum also vary in terms of writer and reader roles, writer identity, career stage/organizational role, and objectivity. Implications for practitioners are discussed. View full abstract»

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  • Using Computer-Mediated Peer Review in an Engineering Design Course

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 264 - 279
    Cited by:  Papers (4)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (1509 KB)  

    Writing, especially when accompanied by feedback and revision, is a powerful enhancer for learning, as the writing-to-learn literature attests. Yet, writing as a vehicle for learning seldom appears in engineering content courses. We relate our experiences with a pilot program in engineering design funded through the National Science Foundation. Specifically, we focus on using Calibrated Peer Review as a platform for formative and summative assessment of integrated writing assignments in targeted courses. Our results show that students improved their skills in elements of engineering design and in writing. Additionally, assessment of the learning outcomes from the targeted courses were used successfully to document accreditation board for engineering and technology's criterion EC3 (g), "ability to communicate effectively," in our latest accreditation cycle. View full abstract»

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  • Innovation Across the Curriculum: Three Case Studies in Teaching Science and Engineering Communication

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 280 - 301
    Cited by:  Papers (3)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (412 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    As is true for engineering communication programs nationwide, at MIT curricular and pedagogical reforms have been driven by changes in the kinds of problems that engineers solve and the associated skill sets that engineers must now have in communication and teamwork. This article presents three case studies from communication-intensive classes at MIT that intend to help students develop the advanced communication skills required of professional engineers today. Highlighting classes in biological engineering, aeronautics/astronautics engineering, and biomedical engineering, we explore the following questions: What does it mean for educational practice if professional communication competencies and tasks are the goals? How can students and technical faculty best create the conditions for students to learn to be skilled team members? How can engineering students move from mere display of data to making skilled visual arguments based on those data? The importance of helping students meet the target competencies of professional practice, of teaching effective teamwork and collaboration, and of teaching students to understand and argue with visual data are recognized as widespread needs, and these case studies attest to the possibilities and challenges in meeting those needs. View full abstract»

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  • Communication in Virtual Teams: Ten Years of Experience in Education

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 302 - 312
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (127 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    Engineering teams are often globally distributed and comprise participants from multiple disciplines and cultures who rely on professional communication support. Companies, organizations, and institutions increasingly embrace these virtual teams and use a variety of information and communication technologies to support synchronous and asynchronous team interaction (e.g., chat, videoconferencing, email, group support systems, instant messaging, and forums). More and more, communication takes place without being face-to-face. Students should be prepared for such a workplace. However, it is difficult to emulate the specifics of real-world projects in a 100-hour university course. One way to bring the real world into the classroom is by combining the efforts of 100 students into a 10,000-hour project. This paper describes the Hong Kong-Netherlands project (HKNet) as an example of an integrated learning activity among multiple international institutions that brings the reality of engineering management with professional communication into educational contexts. Virtual teams comprising students from different parts of the world build websites on specific software topics that are then integrated into a single product. HKNet has entered its tenth year, and over 1000 students have participated. View full abstract»

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  • Beyond WI: Building an integrated communication

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 313 - 327
    Cited by:  Papers (1)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (673 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    To optimize learning to write like engineers, undergraduate engineering students need to develop a conscious awareness of alternative writing practices and their strengths and limitations in different contexts, something that is unlikely to come about either in the workplace alone or in one writing course alone. Needed, then, is an engineering curriculum with writing integrated throughout. What follows is a case study of one attempt to integrate writing throughout the curriculum in a department of civil and environmental engineering. This department's "beyond WI to department-wide" model of writing is still in the early stages; the case study is less a textual account of writing outcomes than it is an account of the sociohistoric institutional conditions that led to the creation of this model and of the reasons for rejecting a model of writing instruction that relies on only two or three writing courses. The model in the case study is contrasted with other models. View full abstract»

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  • Professional communication and a 'whole new mind': Engaging with ethics, intellectual property, design, and globalization

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 328 - 340
    Cited by:  Papers (2)
    Save to Project icon | Request Permissions | Click to expandQuick Abstract | PDF file iconPDF (314 KB) |  | HTML iconHTML  

    This paper describes a new cross-curricular design for an engineering communication course based on four themes: (1) ethics, accountability, and professionalism; (2) intellectual property; (3) design, creativity, and invention; and (4) globalization. It is believed that the thematic structure creates both dynamic and contemporary contexts for writing and research along with enough freedom to pursue individual student interests. The result is a higher degree of intrinsic motivation for the assignments. The course is a collaborative effort between an English department and a school of engineering designed to both improve curriculum and provide more assessment data for engineering accreditation. Among the criteria from the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) is the “ability to communicate effectively.” Along with satisfying this criterion, the course discussed in this paper details how to capture data in support of an additional four of ABET's criteria known as “a–k.” After highlighting these ABET criteria and giving an overview of the structure of the course, the paper details each theme, including their respective readings and assignments. This new course was taught for the first time in the 2006–2007 academic year, and the paper closes by weighing the outcomes and implications of adopting a similar format. The current version of the syllabus and reading list for this course are included in this paper. View full abstract»

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  • Fundamentals of Project Management, 3rd ed. (Lewis, J.P.; 2006) [Book review]

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 341 - 342
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  • E-Human Resources Management: Managing Knowledge People (Torres-Coronas, T. and Arias-Oliva, M., Eds.; 2005) [Book review]

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 343 - 344
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  • Call for Papers: Tutorials & Teaching Cases

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 345
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  • IEEE Technology Management Council

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 346
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  • Leading the field since 1884 [advertisement]

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 347
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  • Explore IEL IEEE's most comprehensive resource [advertisement]

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): 348
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  • IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication Information for authors

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): C3
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  • IEEE Professional Communication Society Information

    Publication Year: 2008 , Page(s): C4
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Aims & Scope

The IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication is a peer-reviewed journal devoted to applied research on professional communication--including but not limited to technical and business communication. It has been published since 1957 by the Professional Communication Society of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

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Meet Our Editors

Editor-in-Chief
Saul Carliner
Concordia University