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Using A Communication Lab To Integrate Workplace Communication Into Senior Design

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Technology and Tools for IE Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.1364.1 - 9.1364.8



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Paper Authors

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Joel Sokol

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Garlie Forehand

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Beverly Sutley-Fish

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Judith Norback

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

Session 3157

Using a Communication Lab to Integrate Workplace Communication into Senior Design*

Judith Shaul Norback, Joel S. Sokol, Garlie A. Forehand, Beverly Sutley-Fish

School of Industrial and Systems Engineering Georgia Institute of Technology


Recently engineering students whose training has traditionally focused on preparing them for the technical aspect of the workplace are receiving more instruction in communication. Senior Design courses offer an excellent opportunity for enhancing students’ writing and presenting skills because of the communication required between student teams, their clients, and their professors. At the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISyE) at Georgia Tech, job communicative analysis, a systematic approach to identifying the writing and presenting demands of jobs, has been used to provide the basis for workplace communication instruction. During workplace interviews with practicing industrial engineers, supervisors, and CEOs, information and workplace examples have been collected. The information has been used to develop a list of criteria for communication excellence: the basis for developing workplace communication instruction to integrate with Senior Design. This article describes the use of the ISyE Communication Lab to implement and support the instruction. Lab activities and instructional tools will be covered as well as faculty and student feedback. The instructional tools will be made available to other institutions for use in their undergraduate engineering courses.

I. Introduction

In recent years, emphasis has increased on preparing engineering students for the communication needs of the workplace. In 2000, the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) included oral and written communication in its accreditation criteria.1 In 1999, the Society of Manufacturing Engineers conducted a survey of manufacturing engineers, managers, and training directors. Two of the conclusions were 1) the oral and written skills of engineering

* This work was supported in part by the National Science Foundation under Grant DUE-0231305.

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

Sokol, J., & Forehand, G., & Sutley-Fish, B., & Norback, J. (2004, June), Using A Communication Lab To Integrate Workplace Communication Into Senior Design Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. 10.18260/1-2--12971

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