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CAES9540 Technical English for Civil Engineering

Coordinator: Mr. Simon BOYNTON

Course Description:

This one semester 6-credit English course will be offered to final year Civil Engineering and Year 3 or 4 BEng(EngSc) Environmental Engineering students. It will run alongside Civil Engineering core project courses. The main course objective is to provide students with training on report writing and oral presentation skills. Students will learn to write a technical report in a professional and effective manner through drafting and revision of their work. They will also be trained to give a technical presentation that focuses on explaining technical information to the general audience, handing over in a group presentation and designing appropriate visual aids to both professional and non-expert audiences. Assessment is by coursework and a final test.

Learning Outcomes:

By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • Present elements of technical information including lexical, visual and grammatical realization that are specific in the Civil Engineering discipline
  • Make convincing justifications and claims based on real-life disciplinary sources
  • Evaluate solutions to engineering problems and options available
  • Write a structured, coherent, grammatically accurate and professional technical report for civil engineering professionals and related personnel
  • Deliver a structured, coherent, grammatically accurate and professional presentation for civil engineering professionals and related personnel


  • A genre approach to written work is employed emphasizing on acquiring the discipline specific genre through consciousness raising, analysis, and application
  • Student’s written work is closely related to their own discipline project
  • Video recording of oral presentations is conducted to add a critical element of tension and to facilitate performance improvements through self-reflection
  • Compulsory attendance of rehearsals is required in order to gain feedback from the teacher and peers for improvement before the assessments
  • Assigned readings and tasks are set for out-of-class and independent learning

Assessment Methods:

(with breakdown of percentage weighting of the various methods)

  • Project reports (60%)
  • Oral Presentations (30%)
  • Independent learning work (10%)