Engineering: Step-by-Step

Blog ยป Engineering: Step-by-Step

Posted on 04 Feb 2013 18:42

Created by Nelsyda PerezNelsyda Perez

We are already so used to hearing the same idea about the misconceptions of writing and engineering. All engineering majors have heard it. "If you wanted to major in engineering because you thought you wouldn't have to talk or write a lot then you are in for some bad news." Of course, now we are focusing on writing now more than ever, but what does it truly mean to write "like an engineer"? What do engineers write in general. Writing by engineers greatly differs from the writing you compose in English class. How so?

Well in order to understand what engineers write we must understand what engineers do. Engineers design solutions to problems while they are also given restrictions and conditions that must be satisfied. Civil engineers specifically design large construction projects that are meant to improve aspects of an urban community such as transportation, waste disposal, irrigation and so on. While they are planning out the construction project, civil engineers have to keep in mind the terrain on which they are working, the budget they are working with, the safety of fellow engineers as well as the safety of people in the surrounding area. After the project is planned out, simulated, tested and approved, civil engineers work on the construction project while also having specific engineers supervise the project as it is being completed.

The designing aspect might contain the most writing that you will see while working as an engineer. You will be responsible for writing at least one proposal to your supervisor before starting the project. You will also have to write analytical reports giving the details relating to the many test and simulations that you will have to do prior to the actual building process. The tests and simulations might (or will) result in rewriting new analytical reports as you have to meet a high standard when it comes to building a structure that will be effective but will also withstand the test of time. There are also the technical specifications listing the materials, the size descriptions and many other things that will result in a calculation of an initial estimated budget. All together you might be writing a little more than the minimum 25 pages you are expected to write for English 210.07. After the design process is complete you will have to write final specifications, blueprints and anything else that will help you and your construction team during the building process.

This is only a small interpretation of what working as a future civil engineer might be like. When you think of civil engineering you think "construction" almost immediately. While the construction part seems fun, behind the scenes there is a lot more that goes on. Without all the writing portions of the job there would exist a lack of communication, a lack of planning and a lack of knowledge about what is to be done before the actual construction project begins. Writing in the civil engineering field, as well as other engineering fields, promotes organization, collaboration and initial planning and practice, which is important for engineering in general.

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