Asee peer logo

International Students And Communication Skills In Engineering Programs: A Recipe For Success

Download Paper |


2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

International Engineering Education I

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.796.1 - 9.796.9



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors

author page

Dyani Saxby

author page

Saeed Foroudastan

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 1660

International Students and Communication Skills in Engineering Programs: A Recipe for Success

Saeed D. Foroudastan, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Dyani Saxby, Graduate Assistant

Engineering Technology and Industrial Studies Department Middle Tennessee State University


It is of utmost importance that universities seek out creative ways to enhance the communication skills of their international engineering students. Too many engineering students graduate and enter today’s global job market without sufficient communication skills that will ultimately give them an edge in their profession. Non-native speakers experience a double-edged sword when it comes to communication skills. Difficulties with the language barrier combined with the fact that some cultures do not encourage speaking out in public exacerbate the problem for many international students. Often, international students will struggle immensely with even the shortest presentations. Learning effective communication skills would help these students have a more pleasant and less stressful experience while studying abroad. Additionally, international students might be more motivated to attend a university that took the extra initiative in teaching communication skills.

This paper examines the importance of teaching communication skills to international students of engineering. Additionally, it investigates various methods of teaching communication skills to international engineering students in higher education. Top priority should be given to see that students are able to live up to the highest standards both academically and professionally. It is time that universities empowered their international students with the additional skills necessary to survive and flourish in today’s competitive and demanding global job market.


Most college students experience some level of stress throughout their studies. Between balancing their social lives, schoolwork, family, and possibly work responsibilities, it can be difficult to excel in all of these areas. As if there were not enough challenges for college students, international students face several additional pressures. These include adjusting to an entirely new culture and surroundings, as well as building relationships with their new peers 1.

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Saxby, D., & Foroudastan, S. (2004, June), International Students And Communication Skills In Engineering Programs: A Recipe For Success Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--13439

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2004 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015