English for Engineering students

Communication exists at the very core of our existence. Humans communicate with each other using different languages and hence the need of impressive and effective communication skills in every profession is most important. . Today, most employers seek employees with excellent communication skills and it has become a prerequisite in addition to the required qualifications.

Today, all graduates as well as undergraduates, irrespective of their chosen subjects need to have great communication skills to learn and interact with their counterparts. Most notably, engineering students need to have good understanding of English language and should have great communication skills. Good spoken English and commendable communication skills can make you stand out from the crowd.  Surveys show that big scale employers prefer people with not just a degree from a reputed institute but people who also possess the art of positive communication. English can be considered to be a language which serves as a link between all types of people. The influence of English in the world especially in India cannot be undermined.

Why is English important for the better future prospects of an engineering student/ graduate?

The learning and proficiency in English for engineering students is extremely important if they want to pursue their career aspirations globally. The use of English language is very widespread and it is one of the most commonly used languages used by the professionals to interact with one another. With globalization, there has been a sharp rise in the number of engineering graduates being assigned international projects, which means they have to communicate with people across various cultures and nationalities. English is the most commonly used language by most professionals. English is considered to be the basic language of science and technology, business affairs as well as diplomacy.

During the years of studies that all engineering students have to undergo, English is the language of instruction. Engineering student work hard and have to attend seminars, lectures etc, which are all in English. The medium of instruction of engineering studies is English in all colleges and universities in India. Mostly all papers and technical journals are written in English and if not written, are eventually translated to English.  When engineers secure jobs in various corporate organizations, most of them are assigned and expected to work in a group which involves extensive use of good language and effective communication skills. While the importance of spoken English skills cannot be overemphasized, the significance of written English skills cannot be ignored either. In many sectors engineers are now required to do technical writing and their work is expected to be factually accurate and grammatically error- free.

The lack of good communication skills and command over English language in many engineering students can be attributed to the fact that even though the language used for instruction is English it is not a criterion for admission into engineering institutions. Even for the students who may have acquired basic schooling in English medium only, the linguistic proficiency can be questionable. It is imperative and has been emphasized by industry experts over the years that engineering aspirants need to have excellent communication skills in addition to the mandatory technical skills.

The outcome of any engineering degree should be analyzed as having two core components; the technical and the communicative component. The technical parts involve the science and the mathematical part. Other things like skill development, ability to focus on problem solving and working together to find a solution etc can be considered to be another set of imperative skills that an engineering degree can provide.

Communication skills extend beyond just being eloquent and articulate. Good listening as well as writing skills is also considered to be a part of good communication skills. Engineering students can increase their employability by practicing effective communication skills.

The problem lies in the fact that English is the second language for most people in India. So due to lack of ample exposure, most students have underdeveloped linguistic skills by the time they get to college or universities. This eventually means that many students do not have proficiency in English by the time they begin their graduate programmes.

Being competent both technically as well as communicatively can establish an engineering graduate securely in the competitive workplace. Working in a knowledge intensive environment like engineering requires the students to be at the top of their linguistic as well as communicative game. A graduate engineer who possesses exceptional technical knowledge must be able to interact and communicate his knowledge effectively with his team. The technical expertise has to be supplemented with good communication skills and one cannot be effective in isolation without the other. Today a successful graduate engineer can boast of the tremendous technical expertise as well as the ability to interact effectively using perfect communication skills.

Dr. Mitalee Shome is a top English Language & communications Expert, based in Mumbai, India. Dr. Mitalee is a PhD in English literature, with over 30 years of rich and varied teaching experience. She has taught at Business colleges, Engineering Colleges and at Arts colleges. For all your communication skills requirements, please contact us at English Expert India.