I Международная научно-практическая Интернет-конференция «Диалог культур – диалог о мире и во имя мира» (24-25 октября 2012 г.)

Кобзева Н.А.

Томский политехнический университет, Российская Федерация


The world today is characterized by an ever growing number of contacts resulting in communication between people with different linguistic and cultural backgrounds. This communication takes place because of contacts within the areas of business, military cooperation, science, education, mass media, entertainment, tourism but also because of immigration brought about by labor shortage or political conflicts. In all these contacts, there is communication which needs to be as constructive as possible, without misunderstandings and breakdowns. Now English is the world-wide language. Therefore learning English gives students the opportunity of dialogues, learning something new, developing friendship, and understanding different points of view. This paper covers the basics of scientific and engineering communication. If technical students really know how to communicate, they can accomplish their job more effectively. This paper presents the way of developing communication skills. Written communication . Students should be taught how to brainstorm their ideas, organize their thoughts and write necessary documents. The techniques of writing good introductions and conclusions should be also emphasized. Interviewing. Inability to interview users properly can lead to requirements not reflecting the needs of the users or requirements that are inconsistent, incomplete, misunderstood, ambiguous or vague. Students need to learn how to prepare for an interview as well as how to ask pertinent questions. They also have problems with documenting the interview and making sure that they write down all the relevant points. These problems are highlighted to the students in a role-playing exercise. Students should be assessed individually in the test, by asking them to set up semi-structured interviews as well as asking them how they would handle various situations that could occur in an interview situation with users. Group dynamics . The importance of teamwork cannot be over emphasized. Students must understand how to communicate in groups, group decision-making methods, finding consensus, giving and receiving constructive criticism, and methods of fostering group cohesion. They should also be able to work with people who are different from themselves. Managing conflict is another necessity for the requirements engineer. Problem-solving meetings. Different types of meetings are important. It is important that students know how to behave in and lead informal problem-solving meetings. They should be able to take comprehensive minutes so that they can ensure that they remember what was done in the meeting. This method helps students to develop their problem-solving skills. It plays an important role and each student is given opportunities to facilitate the groups, thus improving their ability to work as a team member and to lead in a group situation. Multicultural communication. More than 300 foreign students from 15 countries are trained at Tomsk Polytechnic University. Now doubt, TPU students should communicate with foreign students who came to Tomsk. The seminars with foreign students can be the examples of m ulticultural communication . It is like friendly appointment when students make presentations and discuss interesting topics in English, share their experience of student's life, tell funny stories and laugh at good jokes. For example, a seminar which was attended by Ghana student and the main topics which were discussed: 1. From the history of Tomsk and Ghana; 2. Education system in Russia and in Ghana; 3. Perspectives of engineering; 4. New technologies and business; 5. Student’s   life; 6. Russia- Ghana: traditions and culture. Such meetings are useful both for Russian and foreign students. Russian students have good practice of English and recognize more interesting facts about the world. And foreign students, in turn, make new friends and get to know more about Russian culture and traditions. Presentations. Doing presentations is another important skills development. The students should be required to do a presentation of five minutes on a topic of their choice and be assessed on issues like the organization of the talk, the introduction and conclusion and their presentation style.

Overall, it is successful in helping students to learn the communications and interpersonal skills that they need. By doing so, students will stand out more capable and more competent at influencing, leading, and conveying ideas and concepts to their colleagues and others. What would be the benefit if communication tools and techniques were taught to engineers? Imagine engineering graduates who could effectively convey their ideas and concepts and values to a wide variety of colleagues and customers. This would be a boon to the engineering and business communities. Communication excellence is based on the natural structure of language and how the human brain processes verbal and non-verbal information. When we have a clear and sound understanding of the human processes of perception, communication, and cognition, then the process of communication becomes a predictable closed system with input, output, and feedback.