Academic Skills for Developing a Project

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Credits
6
Types
Elective
Requirements
This subject has not requirements, but it has got previous capacities
Department
THATC
This course aims to help students to develop their communication skills to engage in academic work in English at B2 level of the Common European Framework (CEF). The course will provide students with resources to improve oral and writing skills to effectively communicate in the course of an academic activity. More specifically, it focuses on participants' skills to develop their fluency, accuracy and appropriateness in English to carry out a project in engineering both individually and collaboratively. They will apply the principles of technical communication in international settings and they will present and discuss technical information both in speech and writing.

Teachers

Person in charge

  • Antonia Soler Cervera ( )

Others

  • Maria del Carme Bordera Perez ( )

Weekly hours

Theory
2
Problems
2
Laboratory
0
Guided learning
0.4
Autonomous learning
5.6

Competences

Transversal Competences

Third language

  • G3 [Avaluable] - To know the English language in a correct oral and written level, and accordingly to the needs of the graduates in Informatics Engineering. Capacity to work in a multidisciplinary group and in a multi-language environment and to communicate, orally and in a written way, knowledge, procedures, results and ideas related to the technical informatics engineer profession.
    • G3.3 - To conduct an oral presentation in English and answer questions from the audience. To work effectively in an international context, communicating orally in English with people of different nationalities.

Objectives

  1. To understand and apply the principles of academic communication in engineering
    Related competences: G3.3,
  2. To understand the importance of intercultural communication in the development of a collaborative project
    Related competences: G3.3,
  3. To recognize academic oral and written genres in English
    Related competences: G3.3,
  4. To analyze a communicative situation for an engineering project and to develop a plan sheet to communicate effectively
    Related competences: G3.3,
  5. To understand and interpret information in English from written sources applying active-reading techniques, and to use information effectively
    Related competences: G3.3,
  6. To understand and interpret information in English from oral sources applying active-listening strategies, and to use information effectively
    Related competences: G3.3,
  7. To prepare an outline for a writing assignment and present the main ideas orally
    Related competences:
  8. To write the draft of a document section and revise a document
    Related competences: G3.3,
  9. To report on the status of a project in writing (planning a project report)
    Related competences: G3.3,
  10. To participate in academic discussion effectively using the correct kind of language and level of formality
    Related competences: G3.3,
  11. To prepare and give a short oral presentation on a technical topic
    Related competences: G3.3,

Contents

  1. Principles of technical communication
    Problem-solving and genre. Online communication in English. Intercultural communication in international settings.
  2. Project planning and organization
    Defining a communicative task. A plan sheet for an engineering project. Audience and purpose. Communication strategy.
  3. Gathering and exchanging information in academic settings
    Gathering information from oral and written sources. Active reading. Listening comprehension, and note-taking. Organizing ideas and preparing an outline for a project / project proposal. Presenting main ideas orally.
  4. Basic writing techniques for academic work
    From the outline to the draft. Revising a document (content, register, appropriateness). Elements of language and style in academic writing in English. The progress report.
  5. Oral presentations in academic settings
    The process of designing an oral presentation: planning, delivery and evaluation. Strategies and techniques for effective presentation. Elements of language: pronunciation, signposting and discussion. Body language and gesture.

Activities

Activity Evaluation act


Understanding the principles of technical communication

Becoming familiar with problem-solving approaches for communicative purposes and genre. Analyzing different examples of academic genres and the general communicative strategy used.
Objectives: 1
Contents:
Theory
3h
Problems
3h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
0h
Autonomous learning
6h

Analyzing some fundamental aspects of technical and academic communication in international contexts

Analyzing strengths and weaknesses of online communication. Adapting to level of formality in English. Using online tools for collaboration. Reflecting on the importance of intercultural communication
Objectives: 1 2
Contents:
Theory
3h
Problems
3h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
0h
Autonomous learning
6h

Planning and organizing a project in engineering Analyzing a communicative situation. Developing a plan sheet to organize a collaborative project. Devising an effective communicative strategy

Analyzing a communicative situation. Developing a plan sheet to organize a collaborative project. Devising an effective communicative strategy.
Objectives: 3 4
Contents:
Theory
3h
Problems
3h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
0h
Autonomous learning
6h

Gathering information from written sources and writing an outline for a communicative situation

Analyzing academic documents (a degree thesis, a proposal, a progress report). Applying active-reading techniques. Selecting relevant information. Organizing ideas and writing an outline. Using references and avoiding plagiarism.
Objectives: 3 5 7
Contents:
Theory
4h
Problems
4h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
0h
Autonomous learning
11h

Gathering information from oral sources according to a specific purpose and presenting the main ideas of an academic task orally.

Applying active-listening techniques. Taking notes. Practice in presenting the main ideas of academic work orally.
Objectives: 6 10
Contents:
Theory
4h
Problems
4h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
2h
Autonomous learning
11h

Applying writing techniques to write an academic document

Drafting a document section. Revising a document: content, register, appropriateness. Revising language and style in academic writing to achieve fluency and accuracy.
Objectives: 4 8 9
Contents:
Theory
4h
Problems
4h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
0h
Autonomous learning
12h

Designing technical presentation in academic settiings

Applying a three-stage procedure: planning, delivery and evaluation. Devising strategy at the planning stage. Selecting information and structuring the presentation.
Objectives: 4 11
Contents:
Theory
4h
Problems
4h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
0h
Autonomous learning
8h

Delivering an oral presentation and evaluating it

Preparing the speech. Designing visuals. Choosing the correct kind of language. Considering pronunciation and elements of language for signposting and discussion. Using body language and gesture. Applying evaluation criteria for oral presentations. Self-evaluation and peer evaluation.
Objectives: 10 11
Contents:
Theory
3h
Problems
3h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
2h
Autonomous learning
10h

Mid-term test

A test on the recognizing the basic elements of technical communication and devising a communications strategy.
Objectives: 1 2 3 4 5 7
Week: 7
Type: theory exam
Theory
2h
Problems
0h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
0h
Autonomous learning
6h

Delivering and evaluating the oral presentation

The students deliver their oral presentations in class and evaluate their partners.
Objectives: 11
Week: 14
Type: problems exam
Theory
0h
Problems
2h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
0h
Autonomous learning
0h

End-term test

Exam on the process of writing and academic genres
Objectives: 1 3 4 5 8
Week: 15 (Outside class hours)
Type: final exam
Theory
0h
Problems
0h
Laboratory
0h
Guided learning
2h
Autonomous learning
8h

Teaching methodology

Class session combine content presentation by teacher, extensive practice and students' participation. Students' participation and involvement are critical for the development of course activities.
The work on the course contents is based on the development of projects and tasks.
The activities are based on problem-solving tasks with practical exercises and analysis of samples.

Evaluation methodology

Course assessment is based on continuous assessment tasks (course assignments and class participation) and written tests with the following percentages:

-Course assignments. Practical assignments based on the different contents of the course: 15%. These assignments will be done either in class or as homework.
-Course project Written document and oral presentation: 25%.
-Mid-term test
-Class participation: Students are expected to complete activities and tasks and bring their answers to class for discussion. They are also expected to work in collaboration with others.
A combined mark from these two items (mid-term test and class participation) is calculated, worth 30% with the following defined maximum: max (25% MT + 5% PC, 20% MT + 10% PC).
-End-term test: 30%

Students need to complete all the continuous assessment tasks in order to cover all the contents of the course and successfully perform in the exams.
Students will not get a participation mark if they do not attend a minimum of 50% of the course sessions.

Bibliography

Basic:

  • Course workbook: academic skills for developing a project - Secció d'Anglès (UPC), Cpet, 2012.

Complementary:

Web links

  • "Quantum LEAP: Learning English for Academic Purposes". A virtual environment to practise academic English. http://www.quantumleap.cat

Previous capacities

In order to carry out academic / professional communication activities in English, students are recommended to have acquired B1 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEF) or higher.

Addendum

Contents

No s'han introduït canvis significatius als continguts.

Teaching methodology

S'ha establert un 40-50% de sessions presencials. Aquestes sessions poden cobrir una petita part de teoria, tot i que estaran dedicades a la part pràctica principalment. Es concentraran sessions presencials per cobrir els continguts que requereixen més interacció i feedback immediat entre els participants. La resta de les sessions (60-40%) seran no presencials i seran principalment síncrones (Google Meet, per exemple). Es dedicaran a realitzar activitats (teoria o pràctica) per reforçar les habilitats de comunicació acadèmica que es desenvolupen al curs i ajudar a realitzar totes les activitats avaluables. En general, l'assistència a les classes és fonamental per la correcta realització de totes les activitats del curs.

Evaluation methodology

Es mantenen els actes d'avaluació que figuren en aquesta guia, però s'han modificat lleugerament els percentatges sobre la nota final - Primer examen parcial del curs (presencial): 25% - Segon examen parcial del curs (presencial): 25% - Treballs de curs: 15% - Projecte del curs (presentació oral presencial): 25% - Participació a classe i lliuraments d'activitats de classe: 10%

Contingency plan

Metodologia docent. Si la situació ho requereix, la metodologia s'implementarà en mode online per la totalitat de les sessions. La interacció a les classes presencials s'adaptarà a mode no presencial amb les eines de què disposem pel treball online: - ús d'Atenea per facilitar l'accés al material (apunts, materials externs, solucions d'exercicis) i lliurament de treballs - ús de videoconferència per les classes de teoria - ús de fòrums i videoconferència per la resolució de dubtes Mètode d'avaluació. Els exàmens (primer parcial i segon parcial) es programaran en mode presencial inicialment. Si la situació sanitària ho requereix, els exàmens es realitzaran en mode no presencial i consistiran en: (a) activitats lliurades a Atenea / Racó, i (b) prova realitzada de manera síncrona (a Google Meet, per exemple). Els treballs de curs, el projecte del curs i els lliuraments de classe (tots avaluables) també s'adaptaran a mode no presencial si és necessari, i es realitzaran gravacions d'àudio i vídeo per la presentació oral del projecte.