True stereotype engineers!!! One of the many stereotypes about engineers is that we are bad in English language. May it be in writing, speaking, or any form of communication, engineers, they say, just do not have that gift in the universal language.
Here’s what you tell them:
Every subject matter in engineering requires reading and comprehension other than analysis. It is inevitable that engineers deal with math, but that’s only one part: we also deal with worded problems involving numbers.
Engineering problems need to be fully understood in order to provide the best solutions. They need to be dissected to identify which is given and what is required in a problem. When there is a failure to interpret the problem correctly, there is also a failure to provide the solution to that problem. In that regard, engineers are bound to learn English because we need to interpret.
Whether you are an engineering student or a working engineer, you are bound to submit reports at many instances of your life. These reports are never in dialect but always in English, and there is not really an escape to this kind of submissions. To be able to survive, you need to be proficient in English.
Of course there is the occasional reporting that our bosses or professors require. We have to stand in front of everyone, and no matter how introverted you are, you need to speak. And you need to speak in English as requisite of being a globally competent engineer.
To be referred to as someone who is good in English, the most basic thing you need is to have an understanding of the language. That is already a testament among engineers and engineering students as we are exposed to a lot of dull, thick textbooks that are required for us to read as part of our exams and work. That is mostly our training in becoming good English speakers and writers – read.
If you are an engineer who is struggling with your English proficiency, better read, read and read. You are smarter in English than you think you are – you managed to be an engineer with all the requirements embedded with the language. Next thing to do is write, write and write. That’s how you become better. Have someone else with a good command of the language to evaluate and correct your work. Prove to them you can do better.
But if you are an engineer and able to read, write, and speak English, keep it up. Go out there and prove to everyone that they are wrong – engineers do not suck in English!