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  • 1. Auffret, Katja
    et al.
    Geslin, Teresa
    Kjellgren, Björn
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Freddi, Maria
    Petroniene, Saulè
    Rinder, Jamie
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Tual, David
    BADGE: Global competence for sustainable internationalisation in engineering education2021In: Languages for Specific Purposes in Higher Education 2021, 2021Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    BADGE: Global competence for sustainable internationalisation in engineering education

    This paper presents a new Erasmus+ funded project, Becoming a digital global engineer (BADGE2020). The project is a three-year collaboration between language and communication teachers at14 technical universities and engineering departments in 12 countries, with partners representingindustry, consultants, educational organizations and students. The rationale behind the project isthe recognition of two facts: the ever-increasing need for global competence among engineeringgraduates and professionals (Parkinson 2009, OECD 2018), and the need to boost and adjustcommunication and language for specific purposes (LSP) teaching to better support sustainableinternationalisation, acknowledging multiculturality and multilingualism.The project was initiated from within a larger network of language and communication teachers attechnical universities in Europe (GELS 2020), established in 2015 to “enhance future engineers’language skills in order to prepare them for the increasingly challenging demands of a globalisedmarket”, and is divided into 8 intellectual outputs: communication course for future engineers,sustainable writing skills for engineers, e-communication skills, global competence andentrepreneurship, podcasting and video casting architecture, soft skills for engineering students,and global competence through IT and serious games.Working in 8 transnational teams, we will develop learning material ranging from course syllabiand exercises, to handbooks and pods, to be made freely available for download and localmodification as open educational resources. Furthermore, the material will be connected to asystem of digital badges that can be used as a supplement to official degree diplomas.

    References

    BAGDE (2020) The Badge Project www.thebadgeproject.eu, accessed 2020-03-25

    GELS (2020) The GELS network www.clic.eng.cam.ac.uk/news/GELS, accessed 2020-03-25

    OECD (2018) Preparing our youth for an inclusive and sustainable world. The OECD PISAglobal competence framework www.oecd.org/education/Global-competency-for-an-inclusiveworld.pdf, accessed 2020-03-25

    Parkinson, A. (2009) “The Rationale for Developing Global Competence” Online Journal forGlobal Engineering Education: Vol. 4: Iss. 2, Article 2.digitalcommons.uri.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1018&context=ojgee, accessed 2020-03-25

    Note on authorship

    As equal authors and in alphabetical order: Katja Auffret (IMT Mines Albi-Carmaux, École Mines-Télécom,France), Teresa Geslin (Université de Lorraine, France), Ivana Jurković (Veleučilište u Bjelovaru, Croatia), BjörnKjellgren (KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden), Freddi Maria (Università degli Studi di Pavia, Italy), SaulePetroniene (Kaunas University of Technology, Lithuania), Jamie Rinder (KTH Royal Institute of Technology,Sweden), David Tual (Cambridge University, United Kingdom).

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  • 2.
    Bottomley, Jane
    et al.
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Rinder, Jamie
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Zeitler Lyne, Susanna
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM).
    The KTH guide to scientific writing: Sparking a conversation about how we write2023Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The recently launched KTH Guide to scientific writing in English emerged from the many discussions between teachers in Language and Communication and the wider KTH scientific writing community - students, lecturers and researchers - on the nature of effective scientific writing. As a result of these origins, the Guide is rooted in typical writing genres at KTH, and it draws on examples of these to provide guidance on the areas of sentence structure, punctuation, text flow and scientific style. Much of the focus in the Guide is on helping writers to make more informed choices, rather than simply follow rules. We hope to encourage them to explore their own preferences, and thus develop their own individual academic voice.

  • 3.
    Bottomley, Jane
    et al.
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Rinder, Jamie
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Zeitler Lyne, Susanna
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    The KTH guide to scientific writing: Sparking a conversation about writing2023In: 19th International CDIO Conference, Engineering education for a smart, safe and sustainable future, NTNU, Trondheim, Norway, Chalmers University of Technology , 2023, p. 208-217Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The KTH Guide to scientific writing was created with the aim of supporting students and faculty with scientific writing in English. The guide is rooted in the typical writing genres of a technical university, and draws on examples of these to explore sentence structure, punctuation, text flow, and scientific style. Since its launch, the guide has become an integral part of classroom practice in the department of Language and Communication, and an online resource for all students and faculty at KTH. This paper presents our findings from the first stage of our evaluation of the guide. The evaluation consists of a short reflective questionnaire for users. We have begun to collect responses to the questions, and to conduct an inductive thematic analysis (ITA) to identify emerging themes. 

  • 4.
    Rinder, Jamie
    KTH, School of Education and Communication in Engineering Science (ECE). KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    An investigation into STEM students’ uses and perceptions of lexical repetition in their own writing: From early literacy learning to writing in professional life2023Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The repetition of words, lexical repetition, can be an important marker of cohesion in writing, especially in domains where precision and clarity are valued. Contemporary writing in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) is a such a domain. Nevertheless, lexical repetition is sometimes instinctively misunderstood as a feature of an exaggerated style or simplistic language use. 

    Using a classification system inspired by both previous research on lexical cohesion and the specific needs and characteristics of STEM writing, I have analysed 15 project proposals written by STEM students at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden. The sample is small but representative of KTH’s student population in terms of gender, linguacultural background, and years of academic experience. I examined the students’ ways of using and avoiding lexical repetition when referring to key concepts and also reviewed each text with its author(s) in a semi-structured interview. My aim was to understand the students’ perceptions of lexical repetition as STEM writers and English users. 

     Results of the text analysis show that the more experienced student writers frequently chose lexical repetition to refer to key concepts, and that the less experienced student writers tended to use more paraphrases and pronouns instead. This finding challenges the notion that lexical repetition is a feature of inappropriate or simplistic language use. Results of the interviews show that some students were previously discouraged from repeating lexical items in writing. However, they mostly recognised the value of lexical repetition in STEM writing to avoid ambiguity and ensure inter-sentential cohesion. 

     A second round of text collection and interviews will begin this summer with a focus on newly arrived international students. For the WRAB VI conference, I would like to compare the results of the two rounds of data collection and share some insights from the interviews.

  • 5.
    Rinder, Jamie
    KTH, School of Education and Communication in Engineering Science (ECE). KTH Language and Communication.
    Engaging Global Engineers with Topic-Specific Vocabulary2017Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In 2016, the Global Engineers Language Skills (GELS) network set out to identify the most common communication skills required by engineers in industry.  With the results of this investigation, we produced an adaptation of the CEFR self-assessment grid for the specific needs of engineers and the language and communication teachers who work with them.  A potential stumbling block, however, is vocabulary.  How can language and communication teachers, who often have no technical background themselves, provide this kind of topic-specific vocabulary for their students?  This paper outlines a solution to this potential problem by describing a pilot project, whereby students engage actively with the Academic Word List to produce glossaries for their content courses. The potential uses of this work, its strengths and weaknesses, the students’ perceptions of the exercise, and the ways in which this project fits into the GELS network and LSP more generally will be addressed in the paper.

  • 6.
    Rinder, Jamie
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Marking the specific direct object in restrictive relative clauses in spoken Farsi2021In: Orientalia Suecana, ISSN 0078-6578, E-ISSN 2001-7324, Vol. 70, p. 58-73Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This study is an empirical investigation of both the distribution of the specific direct object marker rā in restrictive relative clauses in spoken Farsi and the degrees of acceptance of different patterns of this structure among 50 Farsi speakers. Examples of the target structure are taken from modern films and a spoken translation test and then used in an acceptability judgement test. The findings show that there is a considerable disparity between the written relative clauses studied in previous research and spoken versions of the same structure. More specifically, the findings in this study show that the omission of the rā marker is common, that the use of rā-marked referent pronouns no longer seems to be an acceptable feature of spoken Farsi, and that the use of the rā marker and the judgement of its acceptability change according to the syntactic function(s) of the head noun phrase.

  • 7.
    Rinder, Jamie
    KTH, School of Education and Communication in Engineering Science (ECE). KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM). KTH Language and Communication.
    Vocabulary and LSP for Global Engineers2017In: Interdisciplinary Knowledge-Making: Challenges for LSP Research, 2017Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In 2016, the Global Engineers Language Skills (GELS) project set out to identify the most common communication skills required by engineers in industry.  With the results of this investigation, we adapted the CEFR self-assessment grid to produce a framework of progressive goals to help language and communication teachers meet the specific needs of student engineers learning an additional language (Rinder et al., 2016).  The GELS framework is gaining in popularity, and an increasing number of Language for Specific Purposes (LSP) teachers working at technical universities and engineering departments across Europe are working with it (Geslin et al., 2016).  A potential stumbling block, however, is vocabulary.  What is meant by “frequently encountered lexis” in the GELS framework?  How can LSP teachers, who often have no technical background themselves, provide up-to-date engineering-related vocabulary for their students?  This paper gives a brief overview of the GELS project and provides answers to these vocabulary-related questions by describing a pilot project undertaken at KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden.  The project involves students translating words and phrases based on the Academic Word List (Coxhead, 1998), producing glossaries for their content courses, and translating the glossaries into their first language (e.g. Arabic, Chinese, English, Farsi, French, German, Hindi, Japanese, Serbian, Spanish, and Swedish).  The first results of this work already reveal three important foci for discussion:  first, the suitability of an academic word list in English for other languages and academic cultures; second, the obstacles preventing students learning and using topic-specific vocabulary effectively; thirdly, the importance of students using languages other than English for academic communication   The paper will address the potential uses of the glossaries and translations, the strengths and weaknesses of the work done so far, and the ways in which this work fits into the GELS project and LSP more generally.

  • 8.
    Rinder, Jamie
    et al.
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Bottomley, Jane
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Zeitler Lyne, Susanna
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    “Attempting the impossible”?: On creating a guide to scientific writing in English2023Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    LSP teachers working at KTH Royal Institute of Technology have created a guide to scientific writing in English. This is an online resource that aims to raise awareness of what constitutes effective scientific writing.

    The guide emerged from interactions between LSP teachers and their students and faculty colleagues on the nature of effective scientific writing in English. As a result, and in contrast to many other university writing guides, the KTH guide is rooted in the typical writing genres and conventions of a technical university, and draws on examples of these to explore sentence structure, punctuation, text flow, and scientific style. 

    Since its launch, the guide has become an integral part of classroom practice, and it has drawn a number of comments from students and faculty colleagues in anonymized surveys and course evaluations. Our analysis of these comments suggests that users appreciate the focus on scientific writing (as opposed to more general academic writing), but that some struggle to find answers to specific questions. 

    In this paper, we introduce the guide, present a thematic analysis of the evaluations, and discuss the impact of these on the development of not only the guide, but also on scientific writing practices at KTH.

  • 9.
    Rinder, Jamie
    et al.
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Richter, Tanja
    KTH, School of Industrial Engineering and Management (ITM), Learning, Language and communication.
    Teresa, Sweeney Geslin
    Tual, David
    The Global Engineers Language Skills (GELS) Network: An Update2020Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In 2015, three language teachers working with student engineers at different European universities founded the Global Engineers Language Skills (GELS) network. The teachers’ aims were to investigate and categorize necessary and desirable language and communication skills for engineers and ensure that these findings actively support the teaching and learning of additional languages in technical universities and engineering departments. We presented preliminary results of our work at CDIO’s international conference in 2016. In this paper, we summarize the network’s development since then, interpret the results of our investigations, and describe our work to disseminate our results and promote effective language and communication skills for engineering students. We also summarize our more recent work on enhancing the GELS framework of skills, applying for Erasmus+ KA2 funding, developing the GELS network from three to thirty universities through training events, integrating intercultural communication skills in our work, and teaching and learning through the medium of English.

  • 10.
    Rinder, Jamie
    et al.
    KTH, School of Education and Communication in Engineering Science (ECE), Learning, Language and communication.
    Sweeney Geslin, Teresa
    Didalang, Institut Mines Télécom.
    Tual, David
    University of Cambridge.
    A Framework For Language And Communication In The Cdio Syllabus2016Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    How can the CDIO syllabus for Communications in Foreign Languages be translated into progressive and achievable goals that engineering students can aim for?  How can teachers of additional languages, often with no technical background, best prepare these students before they leave for exchange semesters abroad and the world of work? This paper responds to these issues by presenting the work of the Global Engineers Language Skills (GELS) project. The aim of the project is to investigate which communication skills are most used by engineers in industry and, ultimately, to prepare a teaching guide for language departments that work with engineering students. This paper presents the results of the investigation and the resultant adaptation of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) for the specific needs of engineers. By combining this framework with CDIO’s syllabus for Communications and Communications in Foreign Languages, we argue that a more ambitious and effective integration of additional languages, communication, and engineering at our universities could not only be within our reach, but should rather be a priority to ensure that our students can engineer both at home and abroad.

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