Engineers take on Writing:
Integrating Technical
Writing Instruction
Into Second- and Thirdyear Engineering Courses
Scott D. Peterson, Department of English
Allison Whitney, Electrical and Computer Engineering
Eric Beenfeldt, Electrical and Computer Engineering
University of Maine
Key concerns about the writing
ability of ECE graduates
Communication Type
Written
Faculty
Alumni/Employers
Visual
Faculty
Alumni/Employers
Inadequate
Adequate
More than
Adequate
62%
50%
29%
50%
9%
0%
38%
70%
51%
30%
11%
0%
Inability to identify critical information, Incorrect grammar
or syntax, Poor Organization
Imprecise language, Poor readability, Lack of Clarity
Inability to summarize, Poor report format, Wordiness
Weak analysis, Spelling
Inaccurate statements, Poor technical vocabulary
Plan for Integrating Technical
Communication into ECE
Topic
Course
Assignment
Course
Writing Process
ECE 214
Instructions
ECE 214
Audience Analysis
ECE 214
Memo
ECE 342,
343
Grammar and Style
ECE 214, 342
Business Letter
Document Design
ECE 342
ECE 214,
343
Summarizing Information
ECE 342
Resume and Job
Application Letter
ECE 300
Reporting Information
ECE 342
Lab Report
Communication of calculations
and equations
ECE 214, 342
ECE 342,
343
Proposal
ECE 401
Visual communication
ECE 214, 342
Progress Report
ECE 402
Oral Presentation
ECE 403
Final Report
ECE 403
Abstract
ECE 403
Specifications
ECE 214, 401
Ethical Issues
ECE 300
Incremental Nature of Assignments
Course
Assignments
ECE 214
(spring,
sophomore year)
summary, analysis, compare & contrast,
specifications
procedure
theoretical analysis
business letter
short report
ECE 342
(fall, junior year)
review procedure and theoretical analysis
memo reporting results
memo presenting discussion
ECE 343
(spring, junior
year)
memo to review discussion
business letter to review results
two-page persuasive memo
lab report
Presentation and Workshop
Process for ECE Assignments
Initial assignment
presentation
Topic areas (audience analysis, etc.)
Strategies for writing assignment
ECE provides on-the-job context
Review of
assignment by
ECE and EC
ECE evaluates technical content
EC comments on technical
presentation and style
Presentation by
ECE and EC in
response to
assignment
EC presents strong and weak
examples of student papers
ECE on hand to comment on
technical and on-the-job aspects
Sample Assignment for ECE 214
Sample
handout
Sample
workshop
prompt
Sample
Assignment
for ECE
343
Benefits of the new approach
and new writing assignments
ECE students introduced to and make use
of technical communication concepts
earlier.
Shorter assignments raise quality of
student writing and instructor feedback.
Scenarios develop professional context
and anticipate on-the-job writing situations.
Team-teaching reinforces instruction by
ECE and English Department faculty.
Descargar

Engineers take on Writing: Integrating Technical Writing