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Daciana Indolean

ENGLISH FOR CIVIL ENGINEERING

A communicational approach

Daciana Indolean

ENGLISH FOR CIVIL ENGINEERING

A communicational approach

Editura Mega

Cluj-Napoca, 2012

Descrierea CIP a Bibliotecii Naționale a României INDoleaN, DaCIaNa english for civil engineering : a communicational approach / Daciana Indolean. - Cluj Napoca : Mega, 2012 ISBN 978-606-543-256-7

811.111:62

Ilustrație copertă: Andrei Bendre

DTP: Ovidiu Vlad

Ilustrație copertă: Andrei Bendre DTP: Ovidiu Vlad Editura Mega | www.edituramega.ro e-mail: mega@edituramega.ro

Editura Mega | www.edituramega.ro

e-mail: mega@edituramega.ro

Contents

Preface ���������������������������������������������������7

About this book�������������������������������������������9

Module 1: Personal Development Unit 1: Learning Styles������������������������������������� 15 Unit 2: The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages�������������������������������������������� 19

Module 2: Science and Technology Unit 3: Civil Engineering �����������������������������������25 Unit 4: Buildings������������������������������������������34 Unit 5: Construction Materials������������������������������45 Unit 6: Construction Processes������������������������������57 Unit 7: Writing for Science���������������������������������68 Unit 8: Presenting Your Scientific Work����������������������83

Module 3: At Work Unit 9: The Business Environment ��������������������������95 Unit 10: Writing for Business ������������������������������ 102 Unit 11: Building up the Business��������������������������� 117 Unit 12: I Can Do Business! (Or Can I?)���������������������� 130

PREFAŢĂ

Cartea doamnei Daciana Indolean – „English for Civil Engineer- ing” – a fost, încă de la prima lectură, o plăcută surpriză. Pentru că nu este vorba de un alt manual de engleză, adresat inginerilor constructori, ci de o nouă abordare a predării limbii engleze în domeniul tehnic. Este o carte despre rolul pe care limba engleză îl joacă în dezvoltarea profesională a inginerului secolului XXI. Ca parte a comunităţii europene şi în plin proces de globalizare, nu mai este suficient să poţi meşteşugi cuvinte în maniera marelui Shakespeare; pentru inginer este important să poată comunica cu partenerii săi de muncă şi afaceri într-o limbă care, de cele mai multe ori, nu este limba maternă a nici unuia dintre interlocutori. Doamna Daciana Indolean a intuit foarte bine acest aspect şi, prin această carte, vine în sprijinul tinerilor studenţi, viitori con- structori, relevându-le feluritele moduri în care limba engleză îi poate ajuta în conturarea şi consolidarea carierei lor. Lucrarea abordează inovativ studiul limbii engleze, îmbinând elementele de vocabular şi gramatică cu dezvoltarea abilităţilor de comunicare, cerinţe fundamentale în societarea modernă în care trăim astăzi. Lucrarea este structurată în trei părţi care acoperă aspecte legate de strategii de dezvoltare personală, engleza tehnică în domeniul ingineriei civile şi, respectiv, în mediul de afaceri. Deosebit de utilă este prezentarea Cadrului European de Referinţă pentru Limbi Străine, a modurilor de autoevaluare a cunoştinţelor, stiluri de învăţare şi strategii de dezvoltare personală pe tot parcursul vieţii. De asemenea, este creativă introducerea termenilor şi formulă- rilor specifice domeniului ingineriei civile în contextul utilizării acestora în limba scrisă, citită sau vorbită şi crearea abilităţilor de comunicare – înţelegerea / transmiterea unui mesaj oral sau scris. Noţiunile de gramatică şi vocabular se completează într-un mod firesc şi apelarea la mijloace moderne de informare şi documen- tare, inclusiv internetul, face învăţarea plăcută şi uşoară, într-o manieră interactivă.

Exerciţiile propuse sunt adevărate provocări pentru viitorii ingineri constructori cerându-le să înţelegă sau să formuleze sin- tetic şi coerent specificaţii tehnice, să întocmescă sau să analizeze un raport, să formuleze o scrisoare de afaceri sau un e-mail. Deosebit de bine realizate şi utile sunt capitolele 7 şi 8 – „Writing for Science” şi „Presenting Your Scientific Work” – în care autoarea, cu claritate şi umor, sintetizează paşii care trebuie urmaţi pentru elaborarea unei lucrări ştiinţifice, instrumentele lingvistice nece- sare pentru întocmirea ei şi un ghid practic de prezentare Power Point. Întreaga lucrare militează pentru simplitate, coerenţă şi cla- ritate. Precum un pictor, care combină culorile pentru a obţine nuanţa perfectă, doamna Daciana Indolean, făcând dovada unei deosebite abilităţi în mânuirea strategiilor educaţionale, a îmbinat studiul limbii engleze cu tehnici de comunicare, reuşind să scrie o carte pe care o aşteptam de mult.

Cluj-Napoca, iulie 2012

Conf. dr. ing. Anca Gabriela Popa

Dear students,

This practical course has been created for your specific communi- cational needs as future engineers.

Structure

I divided the book into three modules, each module dealing with three distinct aspects: learning styles and evaluations, civil engi- neering and business communication.

The educational objective of this course is to assist you in your per- sonal and professional development by means of specific teaching modules. The first module introduces elements of lifelong learning and self-evaluation. It will assist you in the further improvement of your communicational competence even after the completion of the English course. The second module presents the universe of civil engineering. It will enable you to acquire the vocabulary related to science and technology behind civil engineering, and it will reinforce the lan- guage structures in use in these specific fields, thus enabling you to cope with the subjects taught as part of your academic training. The third module will enable you to operate with specific language structures and skills required by the industrial and commercial environment. This will allow you to communicate successfully with the various categories of people encountered in your future line of work: crew, superiors, clients, etc.

Educational strategy

The course is based on a combination between individual tasks meant to strengthen the foundation of your communication in English (grammar and vocabulary exercises), combined with inter- active tasks, designed to reinforce English as a communicational tool for future civil engineers.

Learning portfolio

You should be aware of the fact that no matter how frequent or

how intensive English classes are, they will never fully meet your learning needs. This is why your class work will be completed by other learning activities. This learning portfolio should contain the following:

1. classroom notes

2. assignments

3. a written learning plan based on the self-evaluation of your English communicational instruments. You should do this at the beginning of each semester and re-evaluate it after the final tests of each semester

4. a list of words and expressions related to disciplines con- nected to civil engineering, explained in English and translated into your mother language (25 words per semester)

5. a translation of an authentic text on disciplines or areas related to civil engineering from English into your mother language (5 pages per semester)

6. upper-intermediate grammar exercises that should sustain and improve language operations: irregular plurals of nouns, adjectives and their comparisons, prepositions, verb tenses and aspects, conditional clauses, modal verbs, relative clauses, etc.

Evaluation

Your performance will be evaluated several times during each semester by means of short formative assignments, meant to help you determine your strong and weak points in connection to the specific language aspects covered by the units or module. At the end of each semester, you will sit for a summative test, car- rying the weight of the final mark.

Marking system

Your performance to the tests will be evaluated according to the following criteria:

1.

language in use (l)

Your response receives a Pass if the English language used is at least

50% correct. This means that the language you use is not perfect but the mistakes made do not corrupt the quality of the commu- nication, the text or spoken production is fluent, grammatically correct and it employs proper terminology in connection to the aim and structure of the message.

language in use

Points

CeFR levels

The student’s performance presents very few mistakes (grammar, spelling or vocab- ulary) which do not alter the quality of the communication. The texts and oral discourse are fluent, able to render com- plex ideas in ample, spontaneous phrases.

40–50

B2

The student’s performance presents some mistakes (grammar, spelling and vocabu- lary), but, overall, the entire message is comprehensible without much strain. The texts and oral discourse are fluent, less ample but elaborate enough to ren- der complex ideas.

25–40

B1

The student’s performance presents seri- ous grammar, spelling and vocabulary mistakes, which render the communica- tion poor and incomprehensible. Absence of complex ideas. Short sentences and lack of fluency.

10–24

A2

2. attitude (a)

Your response receives a Pass only if you employ the proper atti-

tude towards the reader or the audience. This means that your document is reader-friendly and the communication conveys a positive message.

attitude

Points

Very positive attitude, proper format and language form that expresses respect, easy to follow string of information.

40–50

Positive attitude, the author may not handle situation perfectly but the outcome is reader-friendly and overall it conveys a positive attitude

25–40

Negative attitude, lack of format, hard to track information, disrespect towards the reader or the audience.

10–24

3. Personal commitment

Although not marked, attendance is an important factor that can pass judgment over your final mark. It can deny you sitting for the final test. Please refer to the university regulations about this issue.

4. Plagiarism

Plagiarism is another aspect that can influence your final mark.

While it is acceptable to use the work of others as long as you acknowledge its origin, copied portfolios or homework will deny you entrance for the final test.

Final mark: l + a (minimum 25 points for each criterion to pass) At the end of this book, you should be able to demonstrate com- municational competences at the CEFR level of B2.

Module 1 Personal Development

Unit 1 – Learning Styles

Many people recognize that each person prefers different learning styles and techniques. Learning styles group common ways that peo- ple learn. Everyone has a mix of learning styles. Some people may find that they have a dominant style of learning, with far less use of the other styles. Others may find that they use different styles in dif- ferent circumstances. There is no right mix. Nor are your styles fixed. You can develop ability in less dominant styles, as well as further develop styles that you already use well. By recognizing and under- standing your own learning styles, you can use techniques better suited to you. This improves the speed and quality of your learning.

(http://www.learning-styles-online.com)

The table below shows statements representative for each learning style. Tick the statements that you think represent you and calcu- late the final score.

a

Let’s look at it differently.

B

That sounds about right!

See how this works for you:

That rings a bell! It’s coming through loud and clear. Tune in to what I am saying. Clear as a bell! That’s music to my ears!

I

can’t quite picture it.

Let’s draw a diagram or map.

I’d like to get a different perspective.

I

never forget a face.

C

Tell me word for word.

D

That feels right to me.

Let’s talk later! The word you’re looking for is

hear your but I am not sure I agree. Let me spell it out for you:

I

I

can’t get a grip on this.

Stay in touch! Get in touch with

have good feelings about this! My gut is telling me

I

In other words

e

That’s logical.

F

Let’s work together on this!

Follow the process, procedure or rules. There’s no pattern to this. We can work it out. Quantify it or prove it! Let’s make a list!

We can work it out! Tell me what you are thinking. Help me understand this! Let’s pull some people together to discuss Let’s explore our options:

G

I’d like some time to think it over.

ToTal SCoRe

This is what I think or feel about that. I’ll get back to you on that. I’ll consider it. Let me do some research about that.

A

B

C

D

E

F

G

Based on which letter collected most points, read the short descrip- tion of the seven learning styles:

A – Visual style

If you use the visual style, you prefer using images, pictures, colors and maps to organize information and communicate with others. You can easily visualize objects, plans and outcomes in your mind’s eye. You also have a good spatial sense, which gives you a good sense of direction. You can easily find your way around using maps and you rarely get lost. When you walk out of an elevator, you instinc- tively know which way to turn. Some pursuits that make the most of the visual style are visual art, architecture, photography, video or film, design, planning (especially strategic), and navigation.

B – Aural style

If you use the aural style, you like to work with sound and music. You have a good sense of pitch and rhythm. You typically can sing, play a musical instrument, or identify the sounds of different instru- ments. Certain music invokes strong emotions. You notice the music playing in the background of movies, TV shows and other media. You often find humming or tapping a song or jingle, or a theme or jingle pops into your head without prompting. Some pursuits that use the aural style are playing, conducting or composing music and sound engineering.

C – Verbal style

The verbal style involves both the written and spoken word. If you use this style, you find it easy to express yourself both in writing and verbally. You love reading and writing. You like playing on the mean- ing or sound of words, such as in tongue twisters, rhymes, limericks

and the like. You know the meaning of many words, and regularly make an effort to find the meaning of new words. You use these words, as well as phrases you have picked up recently, when talking to others. Pursuits that use the verbal style include public speaking, debating, politics, writing and journalism.

D – Physical style

If the physical style is more like you, it’s likely that you use your body and sense of touch to learn about the world around you. It’s likely you like sports and exercise, and other physical activities such as garden- ing or woodworking. You like to think out issues, ideas and problems while you exercise. You would rather go for a run or walk if something is bothering you, rather than sitting at home. Pursuits that involve the physical style include general physical work, mechanical, con- struction and repair work, sports and athletics, drama and dancing.

E – Logical style

If you use the logical style, you like using your brain for logical and mathematical reasoning. You can recognize patterns easily, as well

as connections between seemingly meaningless content. This also leads you to classify and group information to help you learn or understand it. People with a strong logical style are likely to follow such pursuits as the sciences, mathematics, accounting, detective work, law and computing programming.

F – Social style

If you have a strong social style, you communicate well with people, both verbally and non-verbally. People listen to you or come to you for advice, and you are sensitive to their motivations, feelings or moods. You listen well and understand other’s views. You may enjoy men- toring or counseling others. Some examples of pursuits that people with a strong social style may follow include counseling, teaching, training and coaching, sales, politics, human resources, and others.

G – Solitary style

If you have a solitary style, you are more private, introspective and

independent. You can concentrate well, focusing your thoughts and

feelings on your current topic. You are aware of your own thinking, and you may analyze the different ways you think and feel. Those that have a strong solitary style include authors, researchers, park rangers and security guards. Peak performers in any field often have a good solitary style behind other more dominant styles.

(http://www.learning-styles-online.com)

assignment In teams of five, choose the three most useful learn- ing styles for a future civil engineer. Compare your results with the others teams.

Unit 2 – The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) was created by the Council of Europe to describe the per- formance of the learners of foreign language across Europe and to provide a method of learning, teaching and assessing applicable to all the languages spoken in Europe. The CEFR divides language users into three categories and six levels:

The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

Basic Speaker

Independent Speaker

Proficient Speaker

a1

beginner

a2

elementary

B1

intermediate

B2

upper

intermediate

C1

advanced

C2

proficiency

At the same time, CEFR describes in detail what a user should be able to do at each level with the five language skills: reading, listen- ing, speaking interaction, speaking production, writing.

The following self-assessment grid will help you evaluate your

English proficiency as a future civil engineer. Please note that in the case of civil engineering, the areas of communication in English are generally related but not limited to:

Construction materials and their properties

Constructions and their characteristics

Construction tools, devices, machines

Specific construction technological processes

Positions and professionals working in constructions

Industrial and commercial communications (letters, e-mails, reports, memoranda, phone calls, meetings, training ses- sions, presentations, etc.)

Read the statements carefully and mark down the letter cor- responding to your level of English proficiency as a future civil engineer for each of the five language skills:

listening

 

I

can understand

 
 

a. terms and expressions

 
 

b. simple

sentences,

short

messages,

announcements

and

instructions

 
 

c. main ideas in professional dialogues (meetings, training sessions)

 

d. the main ideas and complex lines of argument in professional dialogues, documentaries, presentations, scientific discourse

Reading

I

can understand

 

a. familiar terms and expressions, notices, warning signs, tech- nical specifications

 

b. predictable sentences in everyday used materials, advertise- ments, prospectuses, menus, timetables, short and simple e-mails

 

c. key elements of descriptions of processes, business letters or technical specifications

 

d. articles and reports concerned with contemporary science and technology, technical specifications, business letters and other specific documents

Spoken interaction

I

can

 

a.

answer very simple and basic questions related to the techno- logical processes and specific tasks related to my work

 

b.

handle very short social and professional exchanges even though I cannot usually understand enough to keep the con- versation going

 

c.

deal with most situations likely to arise when communicat- ing with a speaker of English. I can enter unprepared into a conversation on familiar topics related to professional activ- ities or free time

 

d.

interact with a degree of fluency and spontaneity with other speakers. I can take an active part in discussions in the pro- fessional contexts, business meetings and other social events

Spoken production

I

can

 

a.

indicate the machines, devices and tools frequently used in constructions, the way they operate and the construction materials used

 

b.

basic phrases and sentences to describe in simple terms my profession and the professional environment, working con- ditions, devices, tools and machines, construction materials and specific technological processes

 

c.

simple descriptions of processes or materials, basic com- ments of the latest discoveries, expressing my personal reactions and opinions

 

d.

clear detailed descriptions of a wide range of subjects related to the professional field. I can create complex presentations for training sessions or product launch

 

Writing

I

can write

 

a. short and simple messages, fill in forms with minimal details (name, position, contact details, technical specifications, con- struction materials)

 

b. short and simple messages, e-mails and order forms

 

c. letters describing a product or a technological process, expressing my professional opinion on the matter in a less elaborate sentences

 

d. clear, detailed text on a wide range of subjects related to my profession, instructions or reports, giving reasons and recom- mendations, business letters and memoranda

Now compare your results to the CEFR equivalent levels:

a – A1, b – A2, c – B1, d – B2

assignment Think about the daily activities that bring you in contact with the English language. Write a list according to the language skills that you need to use when performing those activ- ities (listening, reading, writing or speaking).

Module 2 Science and Technology

Unit 3 – Civil Engineering

Writing definitions

A definition is based upon a concise, logical pattern that includes as much information as it can within a minimum amount of space. Generally, it consists of the term to be defined, the class of object to which the term belongs and the differentiating characteristics that distinguish it from all others of its class. Practice in the writing of such brief formal definitions is good mental discipline as well as excellent training and care in the use of words.

(http://owl.english.purdue.edu).

When writing definitions, you should always define the word or the concept in simple and familiar terms. From a grammatical point of view, definitions use Simple Present and the defining rela- tive clauses, but there are other ways in which we can define terms, for example by means of synonyms or antonyms.

Simple Present is used for:

Things normally done or never done as part of a routine (habits, hobbies, daily or repetitive events, etc.) As an engineer, I always think about the environment. Maria wakes up at 6 in the morning to get to work. He never misses a football game with his colleagues on Saturday.

Facts, generalizations, definitions or laws of science

Concrete is a mixture of water, cement and various aggregates.

Water boils at 100°C. Young engineers do not become specialists overnight.

Scheduled events in the near future

The staff meeting begins on Tuesday at 9.00 am. Our CEO’s plane lands with a two hour delay.

The building is demolished tomorrow morning.

actions happening now

The supervisor is here now.

Defining relative pronouns

1. Who – for subject or object pronoun for people

This is the architect who designed the building.

2. Whose – possession for people, animals and things

We saw the picture of the engineer whose invention helped the construction of the Panama Canal.

3. That – subject or object pronoun for people, animals and

things, can replace who or which This is the architect that designed the building. The cement that was used for this concrete is Portland cement.

4. When – for expressing time

The experts are not sure when this building will be finished.

5. Where – for expressing place

The site where they built the pyramids is in the middle of the desert.

6. Why – for expressing reason

The engineers don’t know why the Romans used marble for the

basement floor.

1. Read the following article and replace the numbers with the dis- ciplines in the box.

Structural engineering Geotechnical engineering Construction engineering

Material engineering Earthquake engineering

Civil engineering is a professional engineering discipline that deals with the design, construction and maintenance of the physical and

naturally built environment, including works such as bridges, roads, canals, dams and buildings. Civil engineering is the oldest engi- neering discipline after military engineering, and it was defined to distinguish non-military engineering from military engineering. It is traditionally broken into several sub-disciplines. Civil engineering takes place on all levels: in the public sector from municipal through federal levels, and in the private sector from individual homeowners through to international companies.

(1) involves planning and execution of the design from transportation, site development, hydraulic, environmental, structural and geotech- nical engineers. As construction firms tend to have higher business risk than other types of civil engineering firms, many construction engineers tend to take on a role that is more business-like in nature:

drafting and reviewing contracts, evaluating logistical operations, and closely-monitoring prices of necessary supplies.

(2) covers ability of various structures to withstand hazardous earth- quake exposures at the site of their particular location. The main objectives are:

understand interaction of structures with the shaky ground

foresee the consequences of possible earthquakes

design, construct and maintain structures to perform at earth- quake exposure up to the expectations and in compliance with building codes.

(3) is an area of civil engineering concerned with the rock and soil that the civil engineering systems are supported by. Knowledge from the fields of geology, material science and testing, mechanics and hydraulics are applied by geotechnical engineers to safely and eco- nomically design foundation, retaining walls, and similar structures. Environmental concerns in relation to groundwater and waste dis- posal have spawned a new area of study called geoenvironmental engineering where biology and chemistry are important.

(4) deals with ceramics such as concrete, mix asphalt concrete, met- als such as aluminum and steel, polymers and carbon fibers. It also

consists of protection and prevention (paints and finishes).

(5) is concerned with the structural design and structural analysis of buildings, bridges, towers, flyovers, tunnels, offshore structures and other structures. This involves identifying the loads which act upon a structure and the forces and stresses which arise within that struc- ture due to those loads.

(www.wikipedia.org/civil�engineering)

2. Give synonyms for the following words from the text:

(to) distinguish

expectation

(to) foresee

consequence

(to) propose

chamber

(to) withstand

gathering

(to) focus

assessment

3. Identify and extract the main concerns for civil engineering in

general and for each of its sub-disciplines in particular. List them in bullet point form.

4. Read the article again and list 10 verbs related to professional

activities of civil engineering.

5. Look at the pictures below. They show fields in which civil engi-

neering is involved. Using the article, write three civil engineering sub-disciplines concerned with each of the items presented in the

photos.

1. Kingston-Rhinecliff bridge, photo by David Hermeyer & Samuel Wantman 2. Westminster Abbey, photo by

1. Kingston-Rhinecliff bridge, photo by David Hermeyer & Samuel Wantman

bridge, photo by David Hermeyer & Samuel Wantman 2. Westminster Abbey, photo by Chris O 3.

2. Westminster Abbey,

photo by Chris O

& Samuel Wantman 2. Westminster Abbey, photo by Chris O 3. Dubai Roads, photo by Imre

3. Dubai Roads, photo by Imre Solt

Abbey, photo by Chris O 3. Dubai Roads, photo by Imre Solt 4. Baraj Vidraru, photo

4. Baraj Vidraru, photo taken from

www.turism-arges.ro

6. Write definitions for the construction terms on the following pattern:

Word/to be/type/relative pronoun/function (verb simple present)

Example The beam (word) is (to be) a horizontal structural member (type) which (pronoun) supports loads over an opening (function).

1. Column/structural shaft of concrete, masonry, metal or timber/ transfer applied vertical loads through its length to its base

2. Tile/thin, rectangular product of mineral, plastics or organic material/form a protective or weatherproof finish

3. Arch/two-dimensionally curved beam construction/support loads between two points of support over an opening

4.

Dome/ hollow, flattened or raised hemispherical roof structure/

rest on a circular, square or polygonal base

5. Hammer/hand tool with a shaft and heavy metal head/strike,

break or drive nails

6. Paint/liquid substance/protect or decorate surfaces

7. Roof/top of a building/provide shelter against the elements

8. Window/opening in an external wall of a building/allow light

into a space

9. Fireplace/domestic construction/burn solid fuel to provide heat-

ing and atmosphere to a room

10. Crossroads/crossing of two roads at the same level/cross each other

(Davies & Jokiniemi, Dictionary of Architecture and Building Construction)

7. Based on the same pattern, write definitions for the following

construction professionals, explaining what they do. The verbs in the box are just some of the activities they may perform. Feel free to use other verbs as well.

assemble

build

drive

form

install

lay

operate

perform

Example The carpet layer is the person who lays out the carpets in a building.

1. The bricklayer

6. The concrete finisher

2.

The carpenter

7. The roofer

3.

The electrician

8. The stonemason

4.

The painter

9. The tiler

5.

The plumber

10. The welder

8.

Based on your personal knowledge, write definitions for the fol-

lowing geometric figures:

Triangle

Pyramid

Square

Sphere

Circle

Cube

Rectangle

Area

Parallelogram

Volume

9. 20 relative pronouns and adverbs have been left out of the text. Write the correct missing pronoun or adverb.

Physics is the science of matter and its motion – the science (1) deals with concepts such as force, energy, mass and charge. It is the gen- eral analysis of nature (2) is conducted in order to understand how the world around us behaves. Classical mechanics is a model of the physics of forces (3) act upon bodies. Mechanics is subdivided into statics (4), models objects at rest, kinematics (5), models objects in motion, and dynamics (6), models objects subjected to forces. The classical mechanics of continuous and deformable objects is continuum mechanics (7), can itself be broken down into solid mechanics and fluid mechanics according to the state of matter being studied. The latter is the mechanics of liquids and gases (8), includes hydrostatics, hydrodynamics, pneu- matics, aerodynamics and other fields. Electromagnetism is the science (9) describes the interaction of charged particles with electric and magnetic fields. It can be divided into electrostatics (10), is the study of interactions between electric charges at rest, and electro- dynamics (11), is the study of interactions between moving charges and radiation. Electromagnetism encompasses various real-world electromagnetic phenomena. For example, light is an oscillating elec- tromagnetic field (12) is radiated from accelerating charged particles. Aside from gravity, most of the forces that we experience everyday are ultimately a result of electromagnetism. Thermodynamics is the science (13) studies the effects of changes in temperature, pressure and volume on physical systems at the macroscopic scale, and the transfer of energy as heat. The starting point for most thermody- namic considerations are the laws of thermodynamics, (14) postulate that energy can be exchanged between physical systems as heat or

work. They also postulate the existence of a quantity named entropy (15), can be defined for any system. A system is composed of particles (16), average motions define its properties (17), in turn are related to one another through equations of state. Properties can be combined to express internal energy and thermodynamics potential (18), are useful for determining conditions for equilibrium and spontaneous processes. Statistical mechanics is the science (19) analyses macro- scopic systems by applying statistical principles to their microscopic constituents. It provides a framework for relating the microscopic properties of individual atoms and molecules to the macroscopic or bulk properties of materials (20) can be observed in everyday life.

(www.wikipedia.org)

10. Rewrite the text contracting the relative clauses (whenever possible).

For example, “the science that deals with concepts” – “the science dealing with concepts”

11. Extract the definition of the three mechanisms of heat energy transfer from the text below.

Convection Conduction Radiation

It is no secret that a house will lose heat in the winter and allow heat in during the summer. Heat, or thermal energy, flows continuously through materials and space, taking the path of least resistance and flowing from the warmer object to the colder object. To understand how thermal insulation works, it helps to understand the three mech- anisms of heat energy transfer: convection, conduction and radiation. In winter, the heat in a family’s living room invariably flows by air movement to spaces that are not heated, such as the basement, attic or garage. This is an example of heat flowing through moving air, known as convection. Another example is when heat is transferred from hot coffee, through the cup, to the hand holding the cup. This is known as conduction, or the process by which heat transfer takes place in solid matter. A third example can be found when a rooftop

is warmed by the energy of the sun. This is an example of the trans- fer of heat through space via electromagnetic waves (radiant energy),

known as radiation. (Bynum, R., 2001, Insulation Handbook)

12. Now match the same terms with their alternate definitions

(1) is the transfer of heat by physically moving the molecules from one place to another. (2) is the process by which heat transfer takes place in solid matter. (3) involves the transfer of heat through electromagnetic waves and absorption of that energy by a surface.

13. Translate the following definitions into English. Use relative

pronouns.

1. Chimia este știința care se ocupă de studiul compoziției, structurii, proprietăților și transformărilor substanțelor prin regruparea atomilor și modificarea legăturilor.

2. Elementul chimic reprezintă o specie de atomi cu aceeași sarcină nucleară.

3. Compusul chimic este gruparea mai multor atomi uniți prin legături chimice.

4. Atomul reprezintă cea mai mică particulă dintr-o substanță, indivizibilă prin procedee chimice dar divizibilă prin pro- cedee fizice.

5. Molecula este cea mai mică particulă dintr-o substanță care poate exista în stare liberă și care păstrează toate propri- etățile chimice ale substanței respective.

(www.dexonline.ro)

14. Define three construction elements or tools in specialist terms

and non-specialist terms. For example:

Abutment

1. The part of a loadbearing system or member from which loads are supported.

2. A vertical construction that supports a vault

Unit 4 – Buildings

Descriptions

In technical English, descriptions can be used to visually present an object.

Descriptive sequences:

1. Spatial sequence – for static or mechanism at rest

2. Functional sequence – for mechanism in action

3. Chronological sequence – order of assembly

A good technical description should use clear and limiting titles for each chapter and appropriate level of detail and technical- ity (adapted to the audience and the purpose of the document). In addition, the description should be impartial, objective and non-judgmental, and should focus on the observable details, such as measurements and dimensions, concrete, specific, material details expressed using precise technical language. Visuals should

be generously used. (Lannon, 2007, Technical Communication)

adjectives describe nouns or pronouns by giving us information on their size, shape, color, origin, material or use. They also help us compare two items.

Comparison degrees of adjectives

1. Monosyllabic adjectives use –er and –est Strong, stronger, the strongest

2. Disyllabic adjectives ending in y, er, ow, le also use –er and –est

Easy, easier, the easiest

Narrow, narrower, the narrowest

3. All other use more and the most/less and the least:

difficult, more difficult, the most difficult/less difficult, the least difficult.

4. Irregular forms:

good, better, the best bad, worse, the worst

much/many, more, the most little, less, the least

5. Describing similarities or differences:

as

as, not as

as

6. Normal order of adjectives in the sentence:

size, shape, color, origin, material, use.

adverbs describe verbs, other adverbs, adjectives or phrases. They describe how (manner, degree, quantity), where (place), why (pur- pose), how often (frequency) and when (time). Most of them can be compared using the same rule as adjectives. Their natural order in the phrase is: manner, place, frequency, time, purpose.

1. Read the description of a famous building in Romania and extract the technical information using the list of headlines below.

The Palace of the Parliament in Bucharest is a multi-purpose building containing both chambers of the Romanian Parliament. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the Palace is the world’s larg- est civilian administrative building, most expensive administrative building and the heaviest one. The Palace measures 270 m by 240 m, 86 m high and 92 m under- ground. It has 1.100 rooms, 2 underground parking garages and is 12 stories tall, with 4 underground levels currently available for the general public and use, and another 4 in different stages of comple- tion. The floor space is 340.000 m 2 . The structure combines elements and motifs from multiple sources, in an eclectic neoclassical architectural style. The building is constructed almost entirely of materials of Roma- nian origin. Estimates of the materials used include 1.000.000 m 3 of marble from Transylvania, most from Ruschita; 3.500t of crystal (480 chandeliers, 1.409 ceiling lights and mirrors were manufactured); 700.000 t of steel and bronze for monumental doors and windows, chandeliers and capitals; 900.000 m 2 of wood, over 95% of which is

domestic, for parquet and wainscoting, including walnut, oak, sweet cherry, elm, sycamore maple; 200.000 m 2 of woolen carpets of vari- ous dimensions, the larger of which were woven on-site by machines moved into the building; velvet and brocade curtains adorned with embroideries and passementeries in silver and gold. Built on the site of a hill variously known as Spirii Hill, the build- ing anchors the west end of Bulevardul Unirii and Centrul Civic. Constructing the Palace and Centrul Civic, required demolishing much of Bucharest’s historic district, including 19 Orthodox Chris- tian churches, 6 Jewish synagogues, 3 Protestant churches (plus 8 relocated churches) and 30.000 residences. Construction began in 1983; the cornerstone was laid on 25 June 1984. It was intended to house four institutions and this explains the building’s rectangular shape. Parts of the building are yet to be completed: some of the west wing, some of the east wing, parts of the second floor, basement 3 and everything below). Currently, a new underground car park is being built inside a former stadium, now used as a warehouse, which was covered during the construction of the palace. The Palace also contains a massive array of miscellaneous confer- ence halls and salons used for a variety of other purposes. (Adapted

from www.wikipedia.org)

1. Overview and description

Built Size Structure Architectural style

Construction materials Finishes

2. Location

3. Other interesting facts

2. Find the words in the text that mean:

1. Selecting what seems best of various styles

2. Relating or belonging to a monument

3.

Produced in a particular country

4.

Made more attractive by adding ornaments

5.

An assortment of different kinds

3.

Write in words these numbers found in the text.

92 m

95%

340.000 m 2 3.500 t

1983

4. Identify and list all the adjectives and adverbs used in the text

which refer to the size of the building.

5. Read the text about the Palace of the Parliament again and decide

what type of description sequence is used.

6. Write the adjectives corresponding to these geometric figures:

square, rectangle, circle, ellipse, triangle, sphere, pyramid, cone, cyl- inder, cube.

7. Turn these adjectives into nouns, and then complete the table by

giving the antonyms and their corresponding nouns.

adjective

Noun

antonym

Noun

High

     

Long

     

Wide

     

Broad

     

Deep

     

Hard

     

Tough

     

Rough

     

Transparent

     

Rigid

     

8. Look at the technical specifications of the three excavators and complete the sentences below.

Mini – excavators

1.

2.

3.

Price

210 Euro

330 Euro

150 Euro

Date of first registration

11 / 2003

1 / 2003

6 / 2000

Kilometer

1.345 km

610 km

1.960 km

Operating hours

1.200 h

610 h

1.860 h

Power

11 kw

3 kw

11 kw

Fuel type

Diesel

Diesel

Diesel

Fuel consumption

10 l

7 l

12 l

Q1: (power)? A1: Excavator 2 has only 3 kw.

Q2: (expensive)? A2: Excavator 3 costs just 150 Euros.

Q3: (expensive)? A3: Excavator 2 costs 330 Euros.

Q4: Which two excavators display equal power? A4: (powerful)

Q5: (recent)? A5: Excavator 1 was first registered in November 2003.

Q6: (mileage)? A6: Excavator 2 has only 610 km.

Q7: (mileage)? A7: Excavator 3 has 1.960 km.

Q8: (fuel consumption)? A8: Excavator 3 uses 12 l of fuel.

Q9: (fuel consumption)? A9: Excavator 2 uses 7 l of fuel.

Q10: (good deal)?

9. Write the answer to question 10 in the form of a report, provid- ing arguments for your choice. Use the template below (1 page).

To:

From:

Date:

Title of the report Introduction (reason for writing the report) Findings (comparison of the three excavators in relation to the pur- pose of the report) Conclusion (which excavator is the best deal)

10. This report contains several spelling mistakes. Identify and cor- rect them.

The purpous of this report is to decide which of the three excava- tors presented in the tabel is considered to be the best deal. After examening the information in detail, and comparing the technical specifications of these excavators we can conclud that clearly the best choise is excavator 1. Firstly, one of the key importance reasons acording to which we chose this excavator is the affordible price, of 210 Euro, and the power. With a power of 11 kw it’s the most powerfull excavator of the three. Secondly, it has a relatively low fuel consumption of 10l. Also this excavator was registered the most recently, which means that it is the leatest model. In conclusion, this excavator is the best choice, considering the price, the power and the fuel consumption.

11. Re-write the following statements using the words in the box.

compliant

earthquake resistant

eco-friendly

fireproof

lightweight

low pour point

permanent

remote control

stable

volatile

1.

The building is constructed so that it will resist to earthquakes.

2. The insulation used for the kitchen walls is not combustible.

3. Nowadays buildings tend to use construction materials which are friendly with the environment.

4. The beams show too little resistance to be used for the bridge.

5. The paint used for the walls cannot be removed.

6. After mixing the two chemical components, the new substance

does not show signs of imbalance.

7. The parquet coating is evaporating quickly at normal temperature.

8. The garage door can be opened from a distance using this device.

9. Aluminium is a construction material which weighs very little.

10. In winter, the excavator needs oil which can be poured easily when cold.

12. Complete the description of this famous building with the missing words.

Basic

Central

Cylindrical

Essentially

False

Finest

Huge

Large

Lower

Most familiar

Most spectacular

Slightly

Smaller

Symmetrical

Tall

Traditional

Typical

Unequal

Universally

Widely

The Taj Mahal is a white marble mausoleum located in Agra, India. It was built by a Mughal emperor in memory of his third wife. The Taj Mahal is (1) recognized as “the jewel of Muslim art in India and one of the (2) admired masterpieces of the world’s heritage. The Taj Mahal is the (3) example of Mughal architecture, a style that combines elements from Persian, Turkish and Indian architectural styles. While the white domed marble mausoleum is the (4) component of the Taj Mahal, it is actually an integrated complex of structures. The construction began around 1632, employing thousands of artisans and craftsmen. The tomb is the (5) focus of the entire complex. This (6), white marble structure stands on a square plinth and consists of a (7) building with

an iwan (an arch shaped doorway) topped by a large dome and finial. Like most Mughal tombs, the (8) elements are Persian in origin. The base structure is (9) a large, multi-chambered cube with chamfered corners, forming an (10) octagon that is approximately 55 meters on each of the four long sides. On each of these sides, a (11) pishtaq, or vaulted archway, frames the iwan with two simi- larly shaped arched balconies stacked on either side. This motif of stacked pishtaqs is replicated on the chamfered corner areas, mak- ing the design completely symmetrical on all sides of the building. Four minarets frame the tomb, one at each corner of the plinth facing the chamfered corners. The main chamber houses the (12) sarcophagi of Mumtaz Mahal and Shah Jahan; the actual graves are at a (13) level. The marble dome that surmounts the tomb is the (14) feature. Its height of around 35 meters is about the same as the length of the base and is accentuated as it sits on a (15) “drum” of roughly 7 meters high. Because of its shape, the dome is often called an onion dome or amrud. The top is decorated with a lotus design, which also serves to accentuate its height. The shape of the dome is emphasized by four (16) domed chattris (kiosks) placed at its corners, which replicate the onion shape of the main dome. (17) decorative spires (guldastas) extend from edges of base walls and provide visual emphasis to the height of the dome. The minarets, which are each more than 40 meters tall, display the designer’s penchant for symmetry. They were designed as working minarets – a (18) element of mosques, used by the muezzin to call the Islamic faithful to prayer. The minarets were constructed (19) outside the plinth so that, in the event of a collapse (a (20) occur- rence with many tall constructions of the period), the material from the towers would tend to fall away from the tomb. (Adapted from www.

wikipedia.org)

13. Define the following architectural elements found in the text:

Iwan

Pishtaq

Amrud Chattris Guldastas Minaret

14. In pairs, student A reads the following house description and the student B draws the house plan on an A4 paper.

The house is located in the beautiful suburbs of Cluj Napoca, in the south-west region, at about 30 minutes’ drive downtown. It is a fully renovated property with four bedrooms, courtyard and garden. The entrance door on the ground floor is leading to an open plan room used as a living room with wooden ceiling and wainscoting. Size of the room is 25 m 2 . There is a wooden staircase at the left end of the room leading to a large bedroom of the same size, with ceiling windows. Under the staircase there is a door leading to separate WC and lavatory. On the right side of the entrance, we find a 45 m 2 kitchen and dining area, with a sliding door leading to a covered terrace area approx. 5 m 2 in size, ideal for sipping wine and taking in the views on a warm summer evening. The kitchen has a swing door, wooden ceiling and wainscoting. Fittings include double sink, one dish- washer, five electric sockets, one oven socket, three phase current supply and installation for the ventilation hood. The dining area has a minibar, tiled floor and a door leading to the 7 m 2 utility room, which houses the boiler, plumbing for washing machine and storage space. The first floor accommodates three bedrooms with wooden floors. Bedroom 1 is 18 m 2 , bedroom 2 is 15 m 2 and the master bedroom is 25 m 2 . Bedrooms 1 and 2 share the bathroom situated between them, while the master bedroom has a separate bathroom. Both of them have WC, sinks and bathtubs and both measure 3 m 2 each. The front courtyard houses one separate building for storage and the car park lane. The back yard has a swimming pool and a barbeque patio.

The basement covers the entire area of the house and is divided into a cellar and a wine cellar. The total plot area is 1347 m 2 .

15. Watch the documentary on Gothic cathedrals and identify the

main elements of this type of construction

and identify the main elements of this type of construction

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkfmK-CLvcc&feature=related

16. Translate the following description in English.

Lacul Vidraru este un lac de acumulare creat in anul 1965 de Barajul Vidraru in judetul Arges, pe raul Arges pentru productia de energie electrica. Suprafata totala a lacului este de 8,93 km 2 , lungimea de 10,3 km, latimea maxima de 2,2 km in cea mai lata zona si o circumferinta de 28 km. Adancimea maxima a apei este de 155 m langa baraj – care este inalt de 166 m. Volumul apei este de 465 milioane m 3 si nivelul normal al apei este la 830,000 m deasupra nivelului marii. Construirea barajului Vidradu a durat cinci ani si jumatate, ince- pand din anul 1960. Au fost necesare 42 km de tunel subteran, au fost excavate 1.768.000 m 3 de beton si au fost instalate 6.300 tone de echipament electromecanic. La data finalizarii, barajul era pe locul 8 în Europa si pe locul al

20-lea din lume. (www.wikipedia.org)

17. Prepare a spoken virtual guided tour of a building, bridge or monument. Your presentation should contain a description of the construction as a whole, its elements, construction materi- als used, architectural style and other technical information. Use visuals such as slides, pictures or scale models to support your presentation.

Unit 5 – Construction Materials

Classifications

The process of classification refers to breaking items into types, classes, categories or kinds and analyzing each one. The key words for classifications are: classes, kinds, types, categories, sorts, groups. In relation to technical writing, classifications make the evalua-

tion of items much easier. (http://www.prismnet.com)

For example, nouns can be classified into:

COUNT NOUNS ARTICLES: a, an, the QUANTIFIERS: a couple of, a few, a load of, a lot of, all, any (+com- pounds), both, each, either, enough, hundreds of, less, lots of, many, more, most, neither, no (+compounds), none of, plenty of, several, some (+compounds), tons of

UNCOUNT NOUNS

1. Things made up of small pieces – sand, gravel, salt

2. Wholes composed of individual parts – machinery (gear, pistons), payment (dollars and cents)

3. Fields of study and professional fields – economics, math- ematics, physics, chemistry, engineering, computer science, English

4. Abstract ideas – information, advice, justice, news, knowl- edge, curiosity, importance

5. Liquids – oil, petrol, water, glue, kerosene, gasoline, beer, paint

6. Gasses – helium, oxygen, carbon monoxide, smoke, methane

7. Solids, minerals and elements – lava, iron, penicillin, plas- tic, steel, wood, mercury

8. Natural phenomena – snow, wind, humidity, darkness

9. Scientific processes and procedures – fission, fusion, sonar, radar, electricity

Binary nouns

1. tools or instruments – scissors, pliers, tweezers

2. articles of clothing worn on the lower half of the body – overalls,

shorts, pants

3. optical lenses – sunglasses, binoculars, glasses

Non count nouns singular in form: cattle, clergy, people, majority, intelligence Non count nouns plural in form: communications, arms, data, goods, media

ARTICLES: the QUANTIFIERS: a bit of, a little, a load of, a lot of, all, any, enough, less, lots of, more, most, much, no, none of, plenty of, some, tons of

BOTH COUNT AND UNCOUNT

1. the singular form and the plural form have two different meanings fish – fishes (more than one species)

2. they are group nouns (can be used both with the singular or

the plural form) The crew is/are very tired today (as a whole or each member)

1. Read the text and create a chronological classification (timeline) of the insulation materials.

For thousands of years, house structures were designed to best suit the climate of their location. For example, using the earth as an insu- lator, the Egyptians retired to the coolness of subterranean chambers and grottoes on hot days. Historians believe that the ancient Greeks and Romans discovered asbestos and found many uses for it because of its resistance to heat and fire. The Romans even used cork for insulation in shoes in order to keep their feet warm. Pliny, in the first century, referred to the use of cork as an insulating material for roofs. Early inhabitants of Spain lined their stone houses with cork bark, and North African natives used cork mixed with clay for the walls of their dwellings.

As technology developed, so did innovations to improve the com- fort of human beings. Introduction of the fireplace and chimney by the Norwegians and people of Iceland during the twelfth and thir- teenth centuries provided controlled, artificial heat. It was evident that the task soon became not only how to keep heat out but also how to keep heat in. The thatched huts of northern Europe were built with a roof, up to 2 ft thick, of woven straw and walls of clay and straw. Early Spanish mission houses of the southwestern United States, where temperatures rose to 140°F, were comparatively cool due to clay straw walls several feet thick. Similarly, the indigenous peoples of the South Seas built huts of dried sea grass. The hollow fiber of the dried sea grass provided a good degree of thermal resis- tance. Mineral fiber – another important insulating material – was first used by the natives of the Hawaiian Islands to blanket their huts. The fibers came from volcanic deposits, where escaping steam had broken the molten lava into fluffy fibers. It was not until the advent of the industrial revolution of the late nineteenth century that deliberate commercial application of thermal insulations became mainstream. For example, blanket-type insulations were being developed throughout the 1890s. Mineral wool was first commercially produced as a pipe insula- tor in Wales in 1840. It was almost 60 years later, in 1897, that C. C. Hall, a chemical engineer, produced rock wool. By 1928, there were eight plants manufacturing either rock wool or slag wool insulation in the U.S. Fiberglass had its first beginnings in ancient Egypt, when peo- ple discovered that they could draw hot glass into threads, which were placed around vessels for decoration. The modern technique of making fiberglass insulation, developed in 1931, involved jet- ting of molten glass through tiny heated holes into high-speed air streams, wherein the resulting fibers are drawn very thin and to great length. Wood shavings were a very popular insulation product due to the wide availability of raw materials and their low cost at the turn of the century. Shavings often were treated with lime or some other

chemicals to increase resistance to water absorption, fire and fungal growth. Straw bale construction also has been around since the “fron- tier days” of the United States and is most common in the western Plains states. When the Kincaid Act of 1904 opened part of Nebraska to homesteading, straw was one of the only indigenous materials available. Reflective insulation materials, using bright metallic surfaces, were first patented in 1804. Aluminum eventually became the pre- dominant reflective material, but it did not achieve commercial popularity until the 1930s. The genesis of insulation board product dates to 1910. Two semi rigid insulation product made from flax (a textile fiber made from plants) were manufactured in Minnesota. Extruded polystyrene insulation was originally developed by the Dow Chemical Company in the United States in the early 1940s. Known proprietarily as Styrofoam, it was first used as a flotation material in life rafts and lifeboats because its fully closed cell struc- ture renders it highly resistant to water absorption. The insulating properties of Styrofoam, combined with the advantage of the closed cell structure, led to its development as a thermal insulation material. Initial applications were in low-temperature situations for cold-store floors, walls and ceiling panels and pipe insulation. At the U.S. paper industry grew in the 1940s, it was only natural to look to paper by-products for insulation. Originally manufactured as a sound deadener, paper-based cellulose soon caught on as an effec- tive, dense insulation material. As a result of the 1970s energy crisis, heavy demand for insulation induced many new producers to enter the cellulose industry, causing a resurgence of cellulose insulation popularity. Once the crisis passed, however, only a few companies remained committed to refining the material. (Bynum, Richard Jr., 2001,

Insulation Handbook)

2.

Read the text again and decide whether the statements are true

or false

1.

Greeks produced asbestos in antiquity.

2.

Cork is a tree.

3.

The Norwegians were interested only in how to keep heat out.

4.

North European huts had thin roofs.

5.

Mineral fiber is a modern insulation material.

6.

Blanket-type insulations were developed starting with the 1890s.

7.

Mineral wool insulation was produced heavily in the U.S.

7.

Reflective insulation materials were first patented in the 19 th

century.

8.

Flax is made of plastic.

9.

Cellulose insulation is still a popular choice in the U.S.

3. Based on the text below and your own experience, arrange the

properties in the list in a diagram under these categories: physical,

mechanical, chemical, optical.

Acidity Alkalinity Brittleness Composition Color Conductivity Corrosion resistance Creep

Density Ductility Elasticity Fatigue Hardness Light reflection Light transmission Malleability

Plasticity Shape Size Specific gravity Stiffness Strength Toughness

While in service use, all materials are exposed to external stimuli that evoke some type of response. For example, a specimen subjected to forces will experience deformation; or a polished metal surface will reflect light. Property is a material trait in terms of the kind and magnitude of response to a specific imposed stimulus. Virtually all important properties of solid materials may be grouped into six different categories: mechanical, electrical, thermal, magnetic, optical and deteriorative. For each there is a characteristic type of stim- ulus capable of provoking different responses. Mechanical properties

relate deformation to an applied load or force; examples include elastic modulus and strength. For electrical properties, such as electrical con- ductivity and dielectric constant, the stimulus is an electric field. The thermal behavior of solids can be represented in terms of heat capac- ity and thermal conductivity. Magnetic properties demonstrate the response of a material to the application of a magnetic field. For optical properties, the stimulus is electromagnetic or light radiation; index of refraction and reflexivity are representative optical properties. Finally, deteriorative characteristics indicate the chemical reactivity of materi-

als. (Callister, William, 2001, Fundamentals of Material Science and Engineering)

4. Read the text and then complete the classification diagram with the construction materials in the box. Some of them may be placed in more than one category.

Acrylic

Aluminum

Cement

Chrome

Clay

Concrete

Copper

Cotton

Foam

Glass

Gold

Grass

Ice

Leather

Mud

Paper

Polyester

Polystyrene

PVC

Rock

Rubber

Sand

Silk

Silver

Steel

Terra cotta

Tin

Water

Wood

Wool

Metallic materials are normally combinations of metallic elements. They have large numbers of non-localized electrons; that is, these electrons are not bound to particular atoms. Many properties of met- als are directly attributable to these electrons. Metals are extremely good conductors of electricity and heat and are not transparent to visible light; a polished metal surface has a lustrous appearance. Fur- thermore, metals are quite strong, yet deformable, which accounts for their extensive use in structural applications. Ceramics are compounds between metallic and nonmetallic ele- ments; they are most frequently oxides, nitrides and carbides. The wide range of materials that falls within this classification includes ceramics that are composed of clay minerals, cement and glass. These materials are typically insulative to the passage of electricity and heat and are more resistant to high temperatures and harsh

environments than metals and polymers. With regard to mechanical behavior, ceramics are hard but very brittle. Polymers include the familiar plastic and rubber materials. Many of them are organic compounds that are chemically based on carbon, hydrogen and other nonmetallic elements; furthermore, they have very large molecular structures. These materials typically have low densities and may be extremely flexible. A number of composite materials have been engineered that consist of more than one material type. Fiberglass is a familiar example, in which glass fibers are embedded within a polymeric material. A com- posite is designed to display a combination of the best characteristics of each of the component materials. Fiberglass acquires strength from the glass and flexibility from the polymer. Many of the recent material developments have involved composite materials. (Callister,

William, 2001, Fundamentals of Material Science and Engineering)

metallic

ceramics polymers type composite Construction materials structure purpose structural elements insulation
ceramics
polymers
type
composite
Construction
materials
structure
purpose
structural
elements
insulation
finishes /
decorations

5.

Compare the construction materials according to the property

defined.

1. steel/aluminum/tin

Elasticity – the property of a material that enables it to regain its original shape and size after the removal of an external load (adjec- tive – elastic)

2. foam/paper/wool

Density – mass per unit volume (adjective – dense)

3. gold/rubber/ice

Conductivity – the ability of a material to conduct electricity (adjective – conductive)

4. rock/glass/terra cotta

Hardness – the property of a material that enables it to resist abra- sion, indentation or scratching (adjective – hard)

5. foam/polystyrene/wood

Porosity – the degree by which the volume of a materials is occu- pied by pores (adjective – porous)

6. Complete the text with the words below.

Attractive

High stress

Stores

Compressional

More durable

Strong

Corrosion

Noncritical

Stronger

Damage

Pressure

Structural (×2)

Durable

Reinforced (×2)

Waterproofing

Fire resistant

Reinforcement

Withstand

Before designing an earth-sheltered house, you should consider what’s involved in its construction, including your construction material options. The construction materials for each type of structure will vary, depending on characteristics of the site and the type of design.

However, general guidelines show that houses more deeply buried require (1), (2) construction materials. Materials must provide a good surface for (3) and insulation to withstand the pressure and moisture of the surrounding ground. When soil is wet or frozen, the pressure on the walls and floors increases. Pressure also increases with depth, so materials such as concrete and reinforced masonry, wood and steel are all suitable. Concrete is the most common choice for constructing earth-shel- tered buildings. Not only is it (4), it is also (5) and (6). Several forms of concrete are used. Lightly (7) concrete, which is poured and rein- forced at the site, is used for (8) structural elements such as concrete foundations, floor slabs and exterior walls with less than 1.80 m of earth cover. Precast reinforced concrete can resist loads at any rea- sonable depth and can be used for floors, walls and roofs. Concrete absorbs and (9) heat, helping to prevent temperature swings that can (10) some building materials. Masonry can be used for walls that will receive vertical or lateral (11) from earth cover. It is (12) with steel bars that are put in the core of the masonry in places of (13), such as weight-bearing walls or walls with earth against them. Masonry generally costs less than cast-in-place concrete. Wood can be used extensively in earth-sheltered construction for both interior and structural work including floors, roofs and exterior walls. Wood is (14) for its color and warmth and complements tile and masonry, as well as concrete walls, floors and ceilings. However, using wood as a structural material requires wooden frame walls, which must (15) lateral pressure and be restricted to a burial depth of one story. Beyond this depth, the rapidly increasing cost of wood construction restricts most builders from using it as a (16) material. Steel is used for beams, bar joists, columns and concrete (17). It is particularly useful because of its high tensional and (18) strength. The primary disadvantage of steel is that it must be protected against (19) if it is exposed to the elements or to groundwater. It is also expen- sive, so it must be used efficiently to be economical as a (20) material.

(http://www.energysavers.gov)

7.

Watch the news about the use of recycled plastics (RP) for con-

struction materials and answer the questions below.

for con- struction materials and answer the questions below. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITve7kfKaBs 1. What is the

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITve7kfKaBs

1. What is the purpose of recycled plastics (RP)?

2. What are the advantages of RP?

3. What are its properties?

4. Are there any disadvantages?

5. What other applications can be found for RP?

8. The chart below shows the status of the construction material

supplies on your construction site (percentages). Write a short e-mail to the procurement department to inform them about the needs of the project, based on the current situation. Use the expres- sions in the box and other words to determine quantity.

For example: There are only a few roof tiles left, we need several more boxes. Perhaps we could return some of the steel bars, which are more than enough, and ask for more lime instead.

a few, a load of, a lot of, enough, hundreds of, less, lots of, many, more, plenty of, several, some tons of, a bit of, a little, a load of, a lot of, most, much, no, plenty of

To: Procurement Department From: your name Date: Subject: Dear colleagues, I have just received your

To: Procurement Department From: your name Date:

Subject:

Dear colleagues, I have just received your report regarding the construction material supplies on our site. Given the current situation, this is what we need:

9. Write a description based on the following notes on stones:

Stones

naturally available

cut in size, shape – building rocks Classifications

1. Geological

1.1. Igneous: granite, trap, basalt

1.2. Sedimentary: sandstones, lime stones, mud stones

1.3. Metamorphic: marble, quartzite, slate

2. Physical

2.1. Stratified: sandstones, limestone, slate

2.2. Unstratified: granite, trap, marble

2.3. Foliated: quartzite

3.

Chemical

3.1. Siliceous: granite, trap, sandstone

3.2. Argillaceous: slates, laterites

3.3. Calcareous: limestone

(Bhavikatti, S.S., Basic Civil Engineering)

10. Translate the text into English:

Chirpiciul este un material de constructie in forma de caramida. Este facut dintr-un amestec de luct, paie si balegar de cal, care ulterior este uscat la soare (nu este ars). Desi se considera ca locuintele din chirpici sunt specifice categoriilor sarace ale populatiei, unii specialisti recunosc ca ele par a fi cele mai sanatoase case si cele mai rezistente la cutremur. Chirpiciul este bun termoizolator, primind caldura cu greutate si cedand-o lent. Lutul si paiele care stau la baza construirii unor astfel de case sunt materiale ecologice, naturale, oferind un mediu interior sanatos. Casele din chirpici sunt foarte racoroase vara si calduroase iarna, sunt case care respire, mai ales cele cu acoperis de paie si podea de lut. Normele in vigoare prevad ca locuintele construite din acest mate- rial de constructie au o durabilitate garantata de 20 de ani, insa practica arata ca ele pot rezista si 70 de ani daca sunt intretinute corespunzator. Pe langa avantajele evidente de bun isolator terminc, are si un mare dezavantaj – este sensibil la umezeala, iar la imbibarea cu apa isi

pierde capacitatea portanta. (adapted from www.wikipedia.org)

11. Write a classification based on a category of items. For example, bridge taxonomy, roof architecture based on geographical influ- ences, construction materials in Romania – countryside versus cities, etc. Present it in front of your colleagues.

Unit 6 – Construction Processes

Describing processes

Technical descriptions are also used for processes. Technical descrip- tions of processes are constructed on the following structure:

1. An overview of the item – identification and function of major parts

2. Operation of item – summary of parts, explanation of one cycle of operation

There are several ways in which processes can be described:

1. Narrative texts – they describe the processes using full body paragraphs, simple present and transition words such as:

first, next, after that, then, finally, etc. They can be both in active or passive voice

2. Numbered sets of steps/instructions – they use the impera- tive and the active voice

3. Numbered lists of actions – they describe the processes using simple past and the active voice (when they focus on the agent performing the process), or they describe the pro- cesses using simple past and the passive voice (when the emphasis is on the action)

(http://oasis.qatar.tamu.edu)

active voice is used for most non-scientific writing and in scien- tific writing when the passive voice might make the message too unclear. Usually it makes the meaning clear for the readers. Sen- tences in active voice are more concise and use fewer words than the ones using passive voice.

Passive voice is used when the focus is on the action. Who or what is performing the action is not important or not known.

The building was demolished last night. A mistake was made and the bridge did not pass final inspection.

Remember! The object of the active sentence becomes the subject of the pas- sive one or it can be dropped completely:

Workers are tearing the old building down. The old building is being torn down (by workers).

The finite form of the verb is changed but the tense and aspect remain the same:

The experts have performed all the safety tests. All the safety tests have been performed (by the experts).

1. Read the following article and extract the main steps of con- structing the igloo.

and extract the main steps of con- structing the igloo. Most people have seen pictures of

Most people have seen pictures of the domed snow block structure known as an igloo. The Inuit build other snow block structures as well, far more complex, but the small domed house most of us have seen in cartoons and movies is a structure which can be constructed in an afternoon. The process needs a snow saw, a snow shovel, waterproof gloves and snowshoes. Construction begins with the cutting of snow blocks. In most areas, snow falls without compacting enough to allow blocks to be cut. Tramp an area the size of your intended snow block quarry for at least 15 to 30 minutes, then let it rest a half hour. Compaction causes the small ice crystals of snow to melt. These quickly refreeze, forming a more solid building material. The size of the blocks you cut will

depend on the size of the block you can handle comfortably and how strong the compacted snow is. Your quarry may be the area over which the igloo is built. With this plan the quarry forms the floor of the igloo. The floor of the igloo is below ground level. Since the entry ways are best set below the level of the igloo floors, further excavation forms the entryway. You will need the snow shovel to excavate a hole in order to reach the underside of the first block and cut them free. Once the blocks are cut, construction begins as an upward spiral. Each block is shaped after it is cut from the quarry. The shape of an individual block depends on the position in the spiral where it will be placed. Near the floor, where the block may not be angled inward more than a few degrees, blocks are rectangular. Near the center of the roof, where the blocks are nearly horizontal, their shape may be nearly triangular. Cut out an arc on the bottom of every block such that only the two bottom edges of the block will rest on the block below. Properly set, the block will make a gentle “thunk”. The compression of that gentle bump will make it stick to the previous block. The final blocks must be set from the inside. After the final block is set, shovel snow onto the igloo and gently pack it into holes and crevices. After a night or two of warming from the inside and re-freezing, the igloo will be very strong. The entry is done after the blocks are all set by cutting an entrance down slope from the edge of the igloo.

(http://www.primitiveways.com/igloo.html)

2. Read the text again and extract the nouns related to construc-

tion and parts of a building and the verbs related to construction processes.

3. Find the words in the text that mean:

1. Made of several connected parts

2. That cannot be penetrated by water

3. To permit

4. To walk with heavy or noisy steps

5.

Place where stone or other construction materials are extracted from the ground

6.

To be able to be operated in a specific way

7.

Additional, more

8.

Narrow opening or crack in a wall

9.

Surface that is at an angle to the earth’s surface

10.

Almost

4. Turn these tips for brick masonry construction into a set of instructions using the imperative and the active voice.

1. Good brick masonry should utilize bricks which are sound, hard, well burnt and tough with uniform color shape and size.

2. The bricks should be compact, homogeneous, free from holes, cracks, flaws, air-bubbles and stone lumps. These bricks should be properly soaked in water for at least two hours before use.

3. In the brick work, the bricks should be laid on their beds with the frogs pointing upwards.

4. The brick courses should be laid truly horizontal and should have truly horizontal and vertical joints.

5. The use of brick bats should be discourages as much as possible

6. As much as possible the brick walls should be raised uniformly with proper bond. Generally, the height of brick masonry con- struction in a day should be less than 1.5 m.

7. When the mortar is greed, the face joints should be ranked to a depth of 12 to 19 mm in order to have a proper key for plas- tering or pointing.

8. In order to ensure continuous bond between the old and the new, the walls should be stopped with a toothed end.

9. Finished brickwork in lime mortar should be cured for a period of 2 to 3 weeks. This period can be reduced to 1 to 2 weeks in case of brickwork with cement mortar.

10. In order to carry out the brickwork at a higher level, a single scaffolding is used.

(http://theconstructor.org)

5. The following steps belong to four different sets of instructions. Re-compose these sets.

How to drive a bulldozer (www.howtodothings.com) How to pour concrete (www.doityourself.com) How to use a fire extinguisher (http://www.fire-extinguisher101.com)

How to give first aid to bone injuries (www.firstaidtopics.com)

After the concrete in the form has been thoroughly tamped, level the concrete. After the form is filled, tamp the freshly poured concrete to compact it. Aim at the base of the fire, not at the flames. Apply a cold compress over the injury to reduce swelling. Control the blade by using the joystick located to your right. Do not rub or move the injured body part. Elevate the injured body part if it can be done without causing fur- ther injury. Grasp the joystick located to your left and slowly push it to the direc- tion you want to go. If there is a protruding bone then bleeding will need to be taken care of by applying indirect pressure. Immobilize the injured body part. Lower the blade until it reaches the ground’s surface. Move the bulldozer forward slowly by controlling the pedal and the steering joystick. Never straighten or realign an injured body part. Operate the extinguisher from a safe distance and then move towards the fire once it starts to diminish. Pour the concrete. Pull the pin at the top of the extinguisher. Rest the injured body part and the entire casualty. Seek medical help. Set the forms. Squeeze the lever slowly to release the extinguishing agent.

Start the machine by turning the key in the ignition. Sweep from side to side until the fire is completely out. When the concrete has set sufficiently to support a plank, use the plank as a straightedge to guide a groover to cut contraction joints.

6. Read the process of steelmaking and summarize each stage using gerund verbs (for example pouring hot metal in the ladle).

Basic oxygen steelmaking process (BOS) is a method of primary steel- making in which carbon-rich molted pig iron is made into steel. The basic oxygen steel-making process is as follows:

1. Molten pig iron (sometimes referred to as “hot metal”) from a blast furnace is poured into a large refractory-lined container called a ladle;

2. The metal in the ladle is sent directly for the basic oxygen steel

making or to a pretreatment stage. Pretreatment of the blast fur- nace metal is used to reduce the refining load of sulfur, silicon and phosphorus. In desulfurizing pretreatment, a lance is lowered into the molten iron in the ladle and several hundred kilograms of powdered magnesium are added. Sulfur impurities are reduced to magnesium sulfide in a violent exothermic reaction. The sulfide is then raked off. Similar pretreatment is possible for desiliconi- sation and dephosphorisation using mill scale (iron oxide) and lime as reagents. The decision to pretreat depends on the quality of the blast furnace metal and the required final quality of the BOS steel.

3. Filling the furnace with the ingredients is called charging. The

BOS process is autogenous: the required thermal energy is produced during the process. Maintaining the proper charge balance, the ratio of hot metal to scrap, is therefore very important. The BOS vessel is one-fifth filled with steel scrap. Molten iron from the ladle is added as required by the charge balance. A typical chemistry of hot metal

charged into the BOS vessel is: 4% C, 0.2 – 0.8% Si, 0.08 – 0.18% P, and 0.01–0.04% S.

4. The vessel is then set upright and a water-cooled lance is lowered

down into it. The lance blows 99% pure oxygen onto the steel and iron, igniting the carbon dissolved in the steel and burning it to form carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide, causing the temperature to rise to about 1700° C. This melts the scrap, lowers the carbon content of the molten iron and helps remove unwanted chemical elements. It is this use of oxygen instead of the air that improves upon the Bes- semer process, for the nitrogen (and other gases) in air do not react with the charge as oxygen does. High purity oxygen is blown into the furnace or BOS vessel through a vertically oriented water-cooled lance with velocities faster than Mach 1.

5. Fluxes (burnt lime or dolomite) are fed into the vessel to form slag,

which absorbs impurities of the steelmaking process. During blowing, the metal in the vessel forms an emulsion with the slag, facilitating the refining process. Near the end of the blowing cycle, which takes about 20 minutes, the temperature is measured and samples are taken. The samples are tested and a computer analysis of the steel given within six minutes. A typical chemistry of the blown metal is 0.3 – 0.6% C, 0.05 – 0.1% Mn, 0.01 – 0.03% Si, 0.01 – 0.03% S and P.

6. The BOS vessel is tilted again and the steel is poured into a giant

ladle. This process is called tapping the steel. The steel is further refined in the ladle furnace, by adding alloying materials to give the steel special properties required by the customer. Sometimes argon or nitrogen gas is bubbled into the ladle to make sure the alloys mix correctly. The steel now contains 0.01–1% carbon. The more carbon in the steel, the harder it is, but it is also more brittle and less flexible.

7. After the steel is removed from the BOS vessel, the slag, filled with impurities, is poured off and cooled. (www.wikipedia.org)

7. Create a flowchart diagram (see example below) with the steps of steelmaking process found in the text above. Add more boxes if

necessary. Choose the best suited voice for the purpose (active or passive).

steelmaking process
steelmaking
process

8. In pairs, extract relevant information from the video about operating a small bulldozer. Student A should watch the video and extract information on how to operate it, while student B should make a list of tips for a correct and smooth operation of the machine.

Example

A – start the engine: switch…

B – check the machine: open…

Example A – start the engine: switch… B – check the machine: open… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hi9tOILaiNs 64

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hi9tOILaiNs

9. Based on your notes made on the video, answer the questions below. Use gerund.

The operator starts the machine by switching the key.

1. How does the machine start?

2. How does the operator make the bobcat go fast?

3. How do you move the boom up?

4. How does the operator turn the machine left?

5. How do you dump the bucket?

10. Write a full narrative description of the tensile stress exper- iment based on the notes below. Use simple present, transition words and the passive voice.

1. Recording the original gauge lengths of the specimen

2. Calculating the mean diameter by measuring the diameter in three different places using a micrometer and taking an average

3. Attaching the Lindley extensometer to record the stretch under the applied force

4. Inserting the specimen into the upper jaws of the machine and attaching the Lindley extensometer to the machine

5. Adjusting the load scale to zero and locking the lower jaws to hold the specimen in place.

6. Applying a small load to the Lindley extensometer to check that it functions properly

7. Starting the necking, removing the extensometer and record- ing the elongation of the specimen using a divider and a ruler

8. Applying continuous load until the specimen fractures (www.

coursework.info)

11. Translate the following process into English. Use passive voice and transition words.

Dl. Ion Pop, zidar, despre cum punem faianta:

“Inainte de toate trebuie sa pregatim peretii. Daca au fost deja

zugraviti, ei trebuie degresati. Apoi trebuie sa egalam si sa acoperim gaurile si fisurile. Incepem sa trasam cu sfoara o linie verticala in mijlocul peretelui. Nu este bine sa incepem niciodata sa punem faianta din colt pentru ca acestea nu formeaza aproape niciodata unghiuri drepte. Pentru a imparti bine faianta, mai intai trebuie sa desenam un plan, sa calculam bine cam cate bucati intregi folosim si cate taiem. De asemenea, trebuie sa avem in vedere o asezare simetrica a placilor. In acelasi timp, trebuie sa decidem ce distanta lasam intre placi. Adezivul se aplica pe orizontala cu o spatula zimtata. Prima placa de faianta se pune in partea inferioara a peretelui si a sforii, sprijinita pe o bordura de lemn. Distanta dintre placi se mentine cu ajutorul pieselor din plastic special produse pentru acest scop. Pe masura ce lipim placile de faianta, inseram distantierele intre ele si masuram din loc in loc cu bolobocul pentru a verifica daca placile sunt puse in aceeasi linie. In cazul in care una dintre ele este mai iesita in afara ii dam cateva lovituri usoare cu ciocanul de cauciuc pentru a o aduce la acelasi nivel cu celelalte. Dupa ce am terminat de pus faianta, vom lasa ca adezivul sa se usuce aproximativ 24 de ore. Dupa ce adezivul s-a uscat vom aplica rostul cu o mistrie de cauciuc. Vom indeparta rostul in exces cu un burete umed sau cu o carpa.”

Spatula zimtata – reeded spatula Mistrie de cauciuc – rubber trowel Boloboc – spirit level Rost – tile grout

12. Turn the translated text into a set of instructions. Use the imper-

ative and active voice.

13. Based on the Gantt diagram below, write a narrative text on the

process of constructing a small family house. Use transition words and the passive voice.

ID

Task Name

 

Start

Finish

Duration

 

feb. 2012

   

mar.2012

   
 

29.1

5.2

12.2

19.2

26.2

4.3

11 .3

18.3

25.3

 

1

Clearing and layout

31.01 .2012

31.01 .2012

1d

 

2

Excavate

01

.02.2012

03.02.2012

3d

2 Excavate 01 .02.2012 03.02.2012 3d

3

Formwork

06.02.2012

07.02.2012

2d

 
3 Formwork 06.02.2012 07.02.2012 2d  

4

Concrete foundation

08.02.2012

09.02.2012

2d

 
4 Concrete foundation 08.02.2012 09.02.2012 2d  

5

Super structure

10.02.2012

01.03.2012

3w

 

6

Masonry

10.02.2012

01 .03.2012

3w

 

7

Roofing

01

.03.2012

09.03.2012

1w2d

 
7 Roofing 01 .03.2012 09.03.2012 1w2d    
 

8

Electrical grid

09.03.2012

13.03.2012

3d

 
8 Electrical grid 09.03.2012 13.03.2012 3d    
 

9

HVAC

09.03.2012

13.03.2012

3d

 
9 HVAC 09.03.2012 13.03.2012 3d    
 

10

Plumbing

09.03.2012

13.03.2012

3d

 
10 Plumbing 09.03.2012 13.03.2012 3d    
 

11

Doors and windows

14.03.2012

15.03.2012

2d

 
11 Doors and windows 14.03.2012 15.03.2012 2d  

12

Lath and plaster

16.03.2012

22.03.2012

1w

 
12 Lath and plaster 16.03.2012 22.03.2012 1w    
 

13

Flooring and tiling

23.03.2012

02.04.2012

1w2d

 
13 Flooring and tiling 23.03.2012 02.04.2012 1w2d  

14

Painting

03.04.2012

03.04.2012

1d

 

14. Prepare a short talk (5 minutes) about a construction process, the production of a construction material or a test done in con- structions and deliver it to your colleagues.

Unit 7 – Writing for Science

Scientific papers

Perhaps the most important aspect of engineering life is that of research and development. Inventions and innovations are at the core of technological progress and they are based on scientific research. Therefore, the engineers are responsible for transmitting their findings by publishing them clearly and widely so that their knowledge and practical implications are shared with the public and other fellow researchers. However, most future engineers love to perform experiments and to do critical thinking but are not so fond of writing about them and tend to procrastinate this important part of their professional life.

The scientific paper is the written counterpart of scientific research. Its basic structure is:

1. Title – describes the matter of the critical thinking or sum- marizes the results of the experiment

2. Abstract – briefly (100–200 words) presents the purpose, method, results and conclusion of the analysis or experiment

3. Keywords – the most important words related to the topic

4. Introduction – defines the terms, describes the situation that led to the experiment or critical thinking, synthesizes what others had to say about the matter

5. Materials and methods – states the hypotheses or assump- tions, provides enough details so that any other researcher can repeat the experiment or line of thought, preliminary results that prove the need of the experiment or analysis

6. Results – presents the results in forms of descriptions, classi- fications, including visuals such as tables, graphs and charts, statistical analyses of the most important results obtained

7. Discussions – provides quantitative analysis (statistical data interpretation) and qualitative analysis (speculations, give reason for why something happened or did not happen or

for the manner it happened), SWOT analysis, recommenda- tions, conclusions, further research opportunities

8. References – represents a complete list of the literature and authors quoted and referred to in your work

Having a plan makes it easy to start elaborating on such a paper. Specialists recommend step-by-step plans, like this one:

Step 1: Identify the type of paper

There are two main types of research papers: analytical and argu- mentative. The analytical paper usually explores and evaluates, while the argumentative one tries to persuade the readers.

Step 2: Identify and group relevant information

Not all data from the process of critical thinking or from the exper- iments conducted will find a place within the lines of the paper. Sometimes experimental results or lines of thought do not lead to conclusive results, or there is not enough statistically relevant information generated. Other times, some of the results have already been clearly proven by previous work or they may just be so obvious that they do not need to be demonstrated. The paper should contain only information relevant to the purpose of the research and should be interesting for the potential readers. On the other hand, the pieces of information should be grouped according to the various parts of the paper (see the structure above)

Step 3: Draft your paper

This step builds the framework of the paper. Parts 4, 5, 6 and 7 of the structure rest on a number of main ideas, much as a house rests on its structure.

Step 4: Write the paper

After building the framework of the paper, this step elaborates and goes into detail on the main ideas for each part, thus creating para- graphs based on and connecting the elements of the structure.

Step 5: Check your work

Many times, we tend to skip this part due to lack of time or lack of energy. Most writers go back and change paragraphs or entire chapters, but fail to go over the entire paper and look at it as a whole. It helps to have a colleague to proofread your work before submitting it. However, many reviews or conference boards have a system called peer blind review, which allows researchers to have their papers reviewed by other researchers specially appointed for this task, without their names being revealed. There is no shame in receiving feedback this way and most scientific writers welcome this, as it helps them clarify their work and make it more reader friendly.

In terms of language in use, here are some aspects you should take into account when writing for science:

1. Keep your text short and simple. Science should convey the information in a logical and simple manner. Use short phrases that cover just one idea. Writing too short sentences interrupts the line of thought a lot, while paragraph-long phrases tend to confuse the reader with too much infor- mation. A good exercise would be to read the phrase aloud. Too short sentences will make you gasp for air a lot (much like when you try to talk after jogging), while the para- graph-long phrase will leave you breathless long before it is completed.

2. Use short words instead of long expressions. Your readers are interested in your research and not in how many points you can win at Scrabble. If you can choose between a word and an expression or a phrase with the same meaning, choose the word. Not to mention the fact that the longer the expression, the more spelling mistakes you are bound to make.

3. Use active voice as much as possible. In the past, using active voice was not very popular when writing for science, because it was believed that the author or the scientist was

in the spotlight instead of the research itself. However, pas- sive voice has become unpopular when writing for science in English nowadays. More and more research papers use active voice to describe the experiments by using the first person pronoun singular or plural (“I” or “we”). Of course, you will not be able to eliminate all passive voice phrases and they still play an important role in writing for science. However, you should use it carefully and only in such situa- tions that cannot be turned into active voice.

4. Some of the most used instruments are:

Defining relative clauses for defining the terms used in the paper

Indirect or reported speech when quoting and paraphrasing other peoples’ work

Modal verbs to express estimations, predictions, possibility or speculations

Conditional clauses to form hypotheses and assumptions

Simple present for experiment descriptions

Comparison of adjectives and adverbs to compare results and samples

1. Read the text and make a list of the main ideas from each paragraph.

(1) A scientific article is a description of new ideas and a demon- stration of their correctness. An article can remain relevant for a remarkably long time and, if published in a major journal, may be read by thousands of other scientists.

Indeed,

perhaps we should not always expect scientists to write well – the skills required for science and writing are rather different. (3) But that does not mean that scientists should be content to write badly. Every scientist whose work is affected by a poorly written paper will suffer: ambiguity will lead to misunderstand- ing; omissions will frustrate; obscurity will make readers struggle

(2)

Unfortunately many scientists do not write well. (

)

to reconstruct the author’s intention. Effort used to understand the form of an article – its structure and syntax – is effort not used to understand its content. And no tale is so good that it can’t be spoiled in the telling. Irrespective of the importance and validity of its argu- ment, a report will not convince anybody of anything if it is difficult to understand. The more important the results (or the greater their surprise value) the better the supporting arguments and their presen- tation should be. (4) Publication not only makes knowledge available, it estab- lishes the authors as the creators of that knowledge. Authorship has obvious rewards such as position and promotion, and has other rewards too; for example, by and large it is the basis on which the scientific Nobel prizes are awarded. But authorship implies respon- sibility. Public mistakes not only make a scientist look foolish, they can hurt a career. (5) Moreover, writing is not just a means of making ideas pub- lic. Another important aspect of it is that the discipline of stating ideas as organized text forces authors to formulate and codify their thoughts. Vague concepts become concrete; the act of writing suggests new concepts to consider; and written material is easier to discuss with colleagues. That is, writing is not the end of the research pro- cess – it is integral to it. Only the styling of a paper, the polishing process, truly follows the research. (6) Taking another perspective, scientific papers are a way of communicating ideas, of copying thoughts between minds. Com- munication is at its most effective when the medium is as free as possible from distortion, which in this case is bad writing of any kind. Such distortion can be reduced by writing with clarity and sim- plicity, and by making effective use of stylistic conventions. (Justin

Zobel, 1997, Writing for Computer Science)

2. Turn the main ideas from the text into a set of recommenda- tions for scientific writers. Use modal verbs: must, should, ought to, could, etc.

3.

Turn this phrase into a positive one by replacing the underlined

words with antonyms. Make necessary changes.

Every scientist whose work is affected by a poorly written paper will suffer: ambiguity will lead to misunderstanding; omissions will frustrate; obscurity will make readers struggle to reconstruct the author’s intention.

4.

Explain the meaning of these expressions found in the text:

1.

No tale is so good that it can’t be spoiled in the telling

2.

Surprise value of the results

3.

Authorship has obvious rewards such as position and promotion

5.

The following paragraphs are part of a research paper describ-

ing an experiment to determine concrete permeability. Change the tense, voice and aspect to make them more reader-friendly.

10 cm cubes of the following mix are to be cast by hand compaction filling the cubes in two layers each layer to be rammed 35 times by ramming rod 16 mm diameter, 600 mm in length one end bullet pointed. A set of 3 cubes shall be prepared with the recommended dosage of admixture. The other set of 3 cubes shall be made without any admixture (controlled cube). In case of surface coating is to be tested, then all the six cubes shall be made of the same mix. After 24 hours of casting, all the cubes shall be demoulded and cured in clean water in the same curing tank for 28 days. After 28 days of curing all the cubes shall be dried in a ventilated oven at the temperature of 100°C to ± 10°C till constant weight. If surface coat- ing is to be tested, then as per recommendations of the manufacturer three cubes to be surface coated at one face and up to the height of 5cm on all the four faces. After coating and conditioning, these cubes along with the controlled cubes shall again be died in the oven at a temperature of 50°C to ± 2°C till constant weight. Coated cubes faces should be kept upward while keeping them in oven, so that coat- ing should not be damaged. The coating after its application should

withstand without any physical and chemical change a tempera- ture of 50°C, which is a temperature normally reached of concrete surfaces exposed to sun at most places of India during summer. A coating sensitive to this temperature should not be tested with this method.

(Kaushal Kishore, Simple Testing of Admixtures and Surface Coating for Permea- bility to Water, www.engineeringcivil.com)

6. Reduce the phrases to a single word

in light of the fact that are in agreement with conduct an investigation of a reversible nature make an adjustment to

on two separate occasions take into consideration has the potential to in the event that in close proximity to

(adapted after Goldbort, 2006, Writing for Science)

7. Paraphrase these quotes based on the following definition of

paraphrasing:

Paraphrasing is the essential information and ideas expressed by someone else, presented by you in a new form.

Although doing science is at the heart of discovery, the effort would have very limited consequence in the long term without writing sci- ence. As a social enterprise that depends on collaboration, scientific inquiry requires its practitioners to write on a regular basis. From time to time, some members of the scientific community have been critical of the overall quality of writing by researchers. If scientists do indeed write less effectively than writers in other professions, at the root of that circumstance may be the sentiment that time spent writing is far less important than time spent doing research. (Gold-

bort, 2006, Writing for Science, p. XI)

As outlined in this section, construction project management that will result in a profitable on-time job involves the organization and interplay of many talents. Engineers, accountants, field supervisors,

construction labor, suppliers and subcontractors, all aided by attor- neys, insurance and bonding underwriters, the design professional, and the owner, must be organized and carefully coordinated. Those who succeed in this complex and difficult business are the ones who familiarize themselves thoroughly with the daily opera- tions of their jobs. They are constantly learning by reading the latest literature and professional journals and by attending seminars and industry functions. They are alert and open-minded about new ideas. They understand the needs of the clients and the design professional and are able to tailor their services to them. (Borg, 2001, Construction

Project Management, p. 70)

Structural theory is based primarily on the following set of laws and properties. These principles often provide sufficient relations for analysis of structures. Laws of mechanics consist of the rules for static equilibrium and dynamic behavior. The material used in a structure has a significant influence on its behavior. Strength and stiffness are two important material properties. These properties are obtained from experimen- tal tests may be used in the analysis either directly or in an idealized form. The laws of deformation require that structure geometry and any incurred deformation be compatible; i.e., the deformations of structural components are in agreement such that all components fit together to define the deformed state of the entire structure. (Brocken-

brough & Merritt, 1999, Structural Steel Designer’s Handbook, 3.1.)

8. Write a research paper on urban heat island effect based on this list of ideas. Make sure you mention your sources.

www.wikipedia.org

Definition

metropolitan area significantly warmer than surrounding rural areas Characteristics

temperature difference larger at night

happens both summer and winter

Causes

building block surface emit thermal radiation

urban canyon effect: tall buildings provide multiple surfaces for the reflection & absorption of sunlight

blocking of wind blocks cooling by convection

waste heat (automobiles), air conditioning, industry Effects

health – extreme heat death

water quality

air quality

higher energy usage

Eng. Kaushal Kishore, What are Green Buildings?, www.engineeringcivil.com Mitigation

1. planting trees

air temp under them can be as much as 10°C cooler

can be sited strategically to shadow roofs, pavements, walls

also cool by evapotranspiration

2. green roofs

keep the surface cool

can also be used to grow fresh local products

significantly reduce storm water run off

local birds attracted

3. permeable pavement

grid or block pavers incorporate grass

lighter colors than traditional pavement

porous – have lower total mass than asphalt or concrete – reduced amount of heat absorbed

4. wall paint

solar reflective paints

5. roofs

painting them with solar reflective acrylic based coating

9. As part of the scientific committee of an international confer- ence, you have just received the title and the abstract from a group of researchers who wish to participate at the conference. You noticed that the title and the abstract have not been properly writ- ten and you decided to send an e-mail to the authors informing them of the things they need to correct.

THE NECESITATY OF UTILIZATION OF ACTUAL METHODS FOR DESIGN AND CALCULUS OF BUILDING FOUNDATION AND EFFICIENT PROCEDURES OF CONSOLIDATION OF SOME OLD FOUNDATION

Abstract In the first part of the paper are presented the principle of the regle- mentation in the field of geotechnique and foundation in Europe and in Romania. Are presented the last isues of standards and norms. In the second part of the paper starts from the observation that in the last years, appeared many situations when the owners or design- ers impose the underworks for existing foundations. The types of old foundations are very different and from these, the foundations which create the most difficulties for execution or designing, are those having in composition friable materials, rotten zones, cracks, etc. For these cases one imposes special solutions of intervention. In the paper one describes some of these types of foundations and one presents the classical solution of consolidation of these types of foundation and one presents the classical solution of consolida- tion utilizing simple concrete. Starting from classical solution, in the paper is presented an improved procedure of consolidation utilizing reinforced concrete, in two variants.

(Assoc. Prof. Eng. Ioan Has PhD, Assoc. Prof. Eng. Andrei Pogany PhD, Assist. Prof. Eng. Aurelian Has, Eng. Ion Alexandrescu, the 14 th International Conference, KBO, Sibiu, 2008)

To:

From:

Date:

Subject:

Message:

E-mail

10. The following statistical data is the result of a survey among engineers on the use of English at their workplace. Draft a list of ideas for a research paper based on this data, by answering the questions below or by using other interrogations.

1. What could be the purpose of this research?

2. Who might benefit from the results of this research?

3. Why are the results of this survey important?

4. What further research development can be done based on these results and by whom?

Sample group: 84 engineers Age average: 26,9 years Gender distribution: 71 male, 13 female Type of company: 33 Romanian, 8 international

engineers Age average: 26,9 years Gender distribution: 71 male, 13 female Type of company: 33 Romanian,
(Indolean, D., 2010, Formarea profesionala a viitorilor ingineri ) 11. Create three experimental designs based
(Indolean, D., 2010, Formarea profesionala a viitorilor ingineri ) 11. Create three experimental designs based

(Indolean, D., 2010, Formarea profesionala a viitorilor ingineri)

11. Create three experimental designs based on these three Mur- phy’s laws. Use the template below.

1. An expert is a person who predicts the job will take the longest and cost the most.

2.

Any tool dropped will fall where it can cause the most damage

3.

3. I. II. III. IV. No matter how clever and complete one’s research is, always someone

I.

II.

III.

IV.

No matter how clever and complete one’s research is, always someone knows more.

experimental design

Purpose of experiment

Working hypothesis

Methods used

Materials

12. Turn this set of instructions into an experiment description.

First, record the original gauge lengths of the specimen. At the same time, calculate the mean of the diameter by measuring the diameter in three different places with a micrometer. Then attach the Lind- ley extensometer to the specimen, apply the force that stretches the specimen and record the amount of stretch. Basically, you insert the specimen into the upper jaws of the machine and then attach the extensometer to the machine. Adjust the load scale to zero and lock the lower jaws to hold the specimen in place. Apply a small load (e.g. 2KN) to the Lindley extensometer and check if it is functioning correctly. When the necking began, remove the extensometer and record the elongation of the specimen using a divider and a ruler. Continue to apply the load until you fracture the specimen.

(www.engineeringcivil.com)

13. You have just returned from an international conference on civil

engineering. Your colleagues are interested in one of the papers on the properties of pervious concrete presented by a prestigious group of civil engineers. Write your colleagues an email paraphras-

ing the conference discourse using indirect/reported speech.

Dear colleagues, Their paper presented the laboratory results of a study undertaken

to determine the effect of shapes and sizes of aggregates on porosity,

unit weight and permeability of pervious concrete. They

“Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen. Our paper presents the labo- ratory results of a study undertaken to determine the effect of shapes

and size of aggregates on porosity, unit weight, strength and perme-

ability of pervious concrete. We measured the aggregate shape in terms of their angularity number. Angularity or absence of rounding of the particles of an aggregate is a property which is of importance because it affects the porosity, surface area in contact with each other in the matrix of ingredients and ease of handling of a mixture of aggregate binder. The result indicates that various properties of pervious concrete vary as a function of angularity number of aggre- gates used. We found that for all sizes of course aggregates used in the study, aggregate with less angularity number produces mix with average compressive strength greater than the aggregate with higher angularity number. The study suggests that angularity number of aggregates may be considered as an important parameter in decid-

ing the suitability of course aggregates to prepare pervious concrete

mix in order to achieve better strength and permeability.”

(A.K. Jain, S.S. Goliya, J.S. Chouhan Effect of Shape and Size of Aggregate on the Properties of Pervious Concrete, www.engineeringcivil.com)

14. Listen to the talk and answer the following questions:

14. Listen to the talk and answer the following questions: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RJf-Sd7QpQA 81

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RJf-Sd7QpQA

1.

Is this statement “technical communication is expert knowl- edge being translated” true or false? What argument from the talk can you mention in support of your claim?

2. What are some of the communication forms that can be regarded as technical communication?

3. What happens when you begin to understand the three ele- ments of the package?

4. Explain the three elements of the package: the goal, the tar- get and the situation

5. What is the main idea of the talk?

15. Translate the following passage into English.

Betonul armat dispers cu fibre de otel este un material de con- structie cu utilizare extensiva. În ultimele decenii s-au intreprins numeroase studii pentru determinarea proprietatilor sale mecan- ice, precum si pentru largirea ariei de utilizare. Lucrarea prezinta performantele mecanice si modul de comportare la solicitari a betonului armat dispers, vizand asigurarea durabili- tatii pardoselilor de tip industrial realizate din acest tip de beton.

(Balazs-Petz, Balint, Oneț, Kiss, 2007, Pardoseli din beton armat dispers, Confer- inta Structuri prefabricate din beton în centrul si estul Europei)

16. Create a short scientific research paper that contains the fol- lowing elements:

a definition of the concept

a classification of its components or a classification of its types

the purpose of the paper

the survey performed

results and analysis

summary or conclusions

references

For the survey, use the resources found at

https://www.surveymonkey.com

Unit 8 – Presenting Your Scientific Work

Creating effective presentations

Many students and young engineers believe that once the scien- tific paper is done, presenting it in front of an audience is nothing more than reading the paper aloud. This is probably why most peo- ple believe scientific gatherings are boring.

Much of the scientific research gets to be presented in front of an audience. That audience can be the board of a multinational company willing to fund your further researches or the audi- ence is the group of fellow colleagues gathered at a conference. Either way, the outcome of your presentation largely depends on how you manage to turn your written work into a spoken (not read) one.

Rule #1: DO NOT READ YOUR TALK!

Unless you are ten years old and your teacher wants to check your reading abilities, nobody appreciates an adult who reads aloud a text, pretending they deliver a presentation.

The structure of a presentation

I. Introduction – Tell them what you are going to tell them

Introduction – Tell them what you are going to tell them • Introduce yourself • Introduce

Introduce yourself

Introduce your subject

Present the structure of the content

Mention when you want them to ask questions

II. Main message – Tell them

II. Main message – Tell them • Begin your talk with a joke, a problem, an

Begin your talk with a joke, a problem, an amazing/interesting fact, or a personal anecdote

Repeat the important points before moving to the next set of information

Use expressions that let your audience know that you have moved on

III. Conclusion/summary – Tell them what you have told them

Conclusion/summary – Tell them what you have told them • “take away” message – max. 3

“take away” message – max. 3 major points for your audience to remember

Operating with Power Point slides

1. Change paragraphs into lists of keywords or main points – no more than four per slide

2. Change tables into charts and graphs

3. Avoid fancy animation (ex. jumping letters) and strange com- bination of colors (ex. red background and blue fonts)

4. Use big size, simple and effective fonts that everyone can read

5. Do not use all capital letters

Step-by-step plan

1. Identify the “take away” message

2. Collect relevant information

3.

Design the visuals

4. Rehearse your presentation

The delivery

The paper is about something, but its presentation is for someone. Design it accordingly.

but its presentation is for someone. Design it accordingly. • Who is your audience? • What

Who is your audience?

What is their relationship with you and with each other?

How much do they know about the topic?

with each other? • How much do they know about the topic? • Dress to success

Dress to success

Smile

Look at your audience

Figure out hand and body movements

Avoid making sounds

Figure out hand and body movements • Avoid making sounds • Breathe • Find friendly faces

Breathe

Find friendly faces in the audience

Know and rehearse every detail of your presentation

Have back-ups ready to use

1.

Put the elements of this presentation in their correct order.

1. After that, I want to go on to examine in more detail the requirements of the Factory Act, as there are several points here that I think have direct relevance to us as a manufac- turing company. This will be especially relevant to anyone who is working in or indeed has any contact with any of our production areas.

2. As you can tell from the title of this presentation, I am going to be talking to you today about various health and safety issues, and how we can make our work environment a safer and healthier place.

3. Good morning, everyone!

4. However, it is not just on the factory floor that health and safety is an issue. So, in the final part of the presentation, I am going to take a look at health and safety in the office environment. You may be surprised to find that there are potentially just as many hazards here as there are in a more obviously dangerous factory environment.

5. In the first part, I am going to cover how the law affects us all and I will give a brief outline of the main points of the 1997 Health and Safety Act. Many of you will be familiar with this if you have been to our induction session for new employees.

6. My name is Dave Brown and, as most of you know, I work in the Human Resources department.

7. There will be plenty of time at the end of the presentation for any questions you may have.

(adapted after EFB Listening test, www.lcci.org.uk)

2. Read the presentation below and answer the questions.

Good morning, everyone. Today I am going to talk about the Wave Energy Converter. You’re probably wondering what a Wave Energy Converter is. So, let’s have a simple definition to start with. Very simply, a Wave Energy

Converter is a system which converts the energy from the sea waves into electrical power. Before I talk about the system itself, let me tell you where it is located, because some systems are located on the surface of the sea, and some on the sea shore. But not this system. The Wave Energy Converter is fixed to the seabed. Ok, now let’s look at the main components. The Wave Energy Con- verter has five main components or parts. These are: a very large flexible disc, a lever, a chamber which takes in sea water, a set of pistons, many sea water pipes, and of course a turbine on the land. The main specifications of the system are as follows. The whole sys- tem on the seabed is 4.6 meters high and 20.4 meters long; the main pipe is 125 millimeters wide; the pressure of the water in the pipes is 7000 kilopascals, or 1000 psi, that’s pounds per square inch. The complete system can generate 100 kilowatts of electricity. Ok, that’s enough number-crunching. Let’s look at how the system works. Here’s a very simple account of the operation of the system. Let’s start with the sea. The sea wave oscillates. This oscillating motion pushes the disc down in a linear motion. The disc makes the lever oscillate. The oscillating lever makes the pistons move in a reciprocating motion. Then the pistons push seawater from the chamber through the pipe at high pressure. The high-pressure water then makes the turbine rotate. And of course this generates electricity. So, that’s how it works. And of course this system has great bene- fits. The most important benefit is that wave energy is a renewable energy resource; and of course, it uses no fossil fuels.

(Bonamy, D., 2009, Technical English 2, Audioscripts)

1. Who do you think is the intended audience?

2. What is the purpose of the presentation?

3. What are the main ideas covered by the talk?

4. What kind of elements (keywords, graphs, drawings, anima- tions, etc) do you think are shown on the slides?

5. Are there any elements of a presentation that are missing from this one? Which ones?

3.

In teams of five, write appropriate openings for these presenta-

tions and then compare your work with the other teams.

1. A firefighter is giving a talk to the workers about fire hazards on construction sites.

2. A doctor delivers a workshop to workers about first aid mea- sures in case of construction site accidents.

3. The project manager presents the progress report on the construction to the management board.

4. The chief engineer explains the crew a new technique of reinforcing structural walls.

5. The professor presents civil engineering students cases of construction failures and their consequences.

4. Give three examples of expressions for the situations below and

then complete the lists with expressions from 1 and 2:

1. Introducing yourself

2. Introducing the subject

3. Giving details about the structure of your presentation

4. Mentioning when you will answer the questions

5. Opening with an interesting fact or problem

6. Introducing and explaining a graph, photo or diagram

7. Moving to another idea

8. Summarizing

9. Providing conclusions

10. Closing the presentation

5. Change these extracts from research papers into presentation

elements (tables into graphs or diagrams, paragraphs into key words or main points, animations, flowcharts, etc.).

1. The dry process of making cement

Limestone is crushed to a uniform and usable size, blended with certain additives (such as iron ore and bauxite) and discharged on

a vertical roller mill, where the raw materials are ground to fine powder. An electrostatic precipitator de-dusts the raw mill gases and collects the raw meal for a series of further stages of blending. The homogenized raw meal thus extracted is pumped to the top of a preheater by air lift pumps. In the preheaters the material is heated to 750°C. Subsequently, the raw meal undergoes a process of calcination in a precalcinator (in which the carbonates present are reduced to oxides) and is then fed to the kiln. The remaining calcination and clinkerization reactions are completed in the kiln where the temperature is raised to between 1450°C and 1500°C. The clinker formed is cooled and conveyed to the clinker silo from where it is extracted and transported to the cement mills for pro- ducing cement.

(http://www.jkcement.com/HTML/manufacturing-process.html)

2. Dimensions of the sample before and after the test

Material

Steel

Copper

Original length (mm) Length after fracture (mm) Percentage elongation (%)

200

200

207

213

3,5

6,5

Original cross sectional area (mm2) Cross sectional area after fracture (mm2) Percentage reduction in area (%)

28,6

28,6

13,4

21,2

53,1

25,9

(http://www.scribd.com/doc/22919957/Tensile-Test-Lab-Report)

3. Visual Inspection of Concrete Structure

By Kaushal Kishore Materials Engineer, Roorkee

Visual inspection is one of the most versatile and powerful of the NDT methods, and it is typically one of the first steps in the evalua- tion of a concrete structure. Visual inspection can provide a wealth

of information that may lead to positive identification of the cause of observed distress. However, its effectiveness depends on the knowledge and experience of the investigator. Broad knowledge in structural engineering, concrete materials, and construction meth- ods is needed to extract the most information from visual inspection. Before performing a detailed visual inspection, the investigator should develop and follow a definite plan to maximize the quality of the record data. Visual inspection has the obvious limitation that only visible surface can be inspected. Internal defects go unnoticed and no quantitative information is obtained about the properties of the con- crete. For these reasons, a visual inspection is usually supplemented by one or more of the other NDT methods, such as by concrete test hammer, ultrasonic concrete tester and partial destructive testing by drilling cores and testing them for compressive strength. (http://www.

engineeringcivil.com/visual-inspection-of-concrete-structure.html#more-4130)

6. Turn this text into a presentation on smart dressing. Use the step-by-step plan to design it. Provide the missing elements of a proper presentation.

Smart casual dressing is also known as business casual and is usually the preferred dress code for most professional settings like an office, symposiums, academia, church, and some school activities. The func- tion of smart casual dress is to make the person look well put together and professional, but in a slightly more relaxed environment. Smart casual or business casual dress for men is a clean, ironed shirt with a collar and only a jacket if the weather permits. Another thing to remember is that business casual also usually means no tie. Smart casual pants for men should be either khakis or chinos that are pressed. They can be in any color, as long as it is not too over the top, but black or tan are the preferred colors. Jeans are definitely not an option. Business casual shoes for men are dress shoes, either brown or black but sometimes grey. And remember to never wear tennis shoes. Smart or business casual dress for women is a little more flexible

than for men. Tops can include blouses, stylish knit tops, a nice sweater set, or classic sleeveless tops with a cardigan or jacket. When choosing smart or business casual bottoms, women should wear khakis or black dress pants, knee-length skirts, or pant suits. Again, jeans are definitely not an option. For shoes, women would do best to wear either dressy flats or mid to low heels. Sometimes, chic boots can be worn as long as they have a slight heel.

(http://www.ehow.com/about�5056844�smart-casual-dressing�.html#ixzz1yW9bxikI)

7. Watch the presenter talk about tips on improving presentation

skills and extract the 10 tips she makes.

presentation skills and extract the 10 tips she makes.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q5WT2vweFRY&feature=fvwrel

8. Watch the presentation again and complete the missing spaces

in the phrases:

1. What

2. Your slides are not your

3. Include in your presentation only

4. Rules of

5. If you are serious about

6. If you are rude and arrogant to the crew, they

7.

will the audience get if they listen to you?

can be really effective

then you need to be serious about

If you are

, be smart.

8.

Stick

, be authentic, and the audience will believe in you.

9. Engage

10. Once the audience can spot that you have a passion for the

with the audience

subject, they will

in your presentation.

9. Create a 15 minute Power Point presentation for the scientific paper you wrote at the end of the previous unit and deliver it in front of your colleagues.

Module 3 At Work

Unit 9 – The Business Environment

1. Read the article and define the five sectors of the economy

Sectors of the Economy – Primary, Secondary, Tertiary, Quaternary and Quinary By Matt Rosenberg, About.com Guide (Nov 17 2010)

A nation’s economy can be divided into various sectors to define the proportion of the population engaged in the activity sector. This categorization is seen as a continuum of distance from the natural environment. The continuum starts with the primary sec- tor, which concerns itself with the utilization of raw materials from the earth such as agriculture and mining. From there, the distance from the raw materials of the earth increases. The primary sector of the economy extracts or harvest prod- ucts from the earth. The primary sector includes the production of raw material and basic foods. Activities associated with the primary sector include agriculture (both subsistence and commer- cial), mining, forestry, farming, grazing, hunting and gathering, fishing and quarrying. The packaging and processing of the raw material associated with this sector is also considered to be part of this sector. In developed and developing countries, a decreasing propor- tion of workers are involved in the primary sector. About 3% of the U.S. labor force is engaged in primary sector activity today, while more that two-thirds of the labor force were primary sector work- ers in the mid-nineteenth century. The secondary sector of the economy manufactures finished goods. All of manufacturing, processing and construction lie within the secondary sector. Activities associated with the sec- ondary sector include metal working and melting, automobile production, textile production, chemical and engineering indus- tries, aerospace manufacturing, energy utilities, engineering, breweries and bottlers, construction and shipbuilding.

The tertiary sector of the economy is the service industry. This sector provides services to the general population and to businesses. Activities associated with this sector include retail and wholesale trades, transportation and distribution, entertainment (movies, tele- vision, radio, music, theater, etc.), restaurants, clerical services, media, tourism, insurance, banking, healthcare and law. In most developed and developing countries, a growing propor- tion of workers are devoted to the tertiary sector. In the U.S., more than 80% of the labor force is tertiary workers. The quaternary sector of the economy consists of intellectual activities. Activities associated with this sector include government, culture, libraries, scientific research, education and information technology. Some consider there to be a branch of the quaternary sector called the quinary sector, which includes the highest levels of decision making in a society or economy. This sector would include the top executives of officials in such fields as government, science, universi- ties, nonprofit, healthcare, culture and the media.

(www.about.com)

2. In teams of five, based on the information from the article, deter- mine which sectors are predominant in your home town and in the country. Write your final results on the blackboard next to the rest of the teams to get a complete picture for the country.

3. In pairs, determine what connection there is between these various activities. Choose three different activities. For example:

Farming depends on packaging, wholesale and transportation. Pres- ent your final response in the form of a diagram. Compare and discuss your results with the results of the other students.

Agriculture

Consulting

Finance

Car making

Distribution

Food and beverage

Banking

Engineering

Information

Constructions

Entertainment

Media

Metal working

Retail

University

Mining

Textile

Utilities

Packaging

Tourism

Wholesale

Real estate

Transportation

4. The text presents three major types of business, according to ownership. Read the article and extract their definition.

The sole proprietorship is the simplest business form under which one can operate a business. The sole proprietorship is not a legal entity. It simply refers to a natural person who owns the business and is personally responsible for its debts. Usually, a sole proprietor- ship operates under the name of its owner. This is a popular business form due to its simplicity, ease of setup, and nominal costs. A sole proprietor need only register his or her name and secure local licenses, and the sole proprietorship is ready for business. A distinct disadvantage, however is that the owner of a sole proprietorship remains personally liable for all the business’s debts. So, if a sole proprietor business runs into a financial trouble, creditors can bring lawsuits against the business owner. If such suits are successful, the owner will have to pay the business debts with his or her own money. Many businesses begin as a sole proprietorship and graduate to more complex business forms as the business develops. A partnership is a business form created automatically when two or more persons engage in a business enterprise for profit. Partnerships can be formed with a handshake, and often they are. Responsible partners, however, will seek to have their partnership arrangement memorialized in a partnership agreement, preferably with the assistance of an attorney. Because partnerships can be formed so easily, partnerships are often formed accidentally through oral agreements. The term corporation comes from the Latin corpus, which means body. A corporation is a body, which means it is a legal person in the eyes of the law. It can bring lawsuits, can buy and sell property,

contract, be taxed and even commit crimes. It is most notable feature is that a corporation protects its owners from personal liability for corporate debts and obligations within limits. A corporation has perpetual life. When shareholders pass on or leave a corporation, they can transfer their shares to others who can continue a corporation’s business. A corporation is owned by its shareholders, managed by its board of directors, and in most cases operated by its officers. The shareholders elect the directors, who in turn appoint the corporate officers. In small corporations, the same person may serve multiple roles: shareholder, director and officer. Corporation shareholders, directors, officers and managers must observe particular formalities in a corporation’s operation and administration. For example, decisions regarding a corporation’s man- agement must often be made by formal vote and must be recorded in the corporate minutes. Meetings of shareholders and directors must be properly noticed and must meet quorum requirements. Finally, corporations must meet annual reporting requirements.

(http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/200516-2)

5. These definitions belong to words from the text. Identify them.

1. A group of persons chosen to govern the affairs of a large institution

2. An entity recognized by the law

3. An established form, rule or custom

4. An official record of the proceedings of a meeting

5. Expenses of production

6. Legally responsible

7. Someone legally appointed to act in business or legal transactions

8. The minimal number of members of an organization who must be present for a valid transaction of business

9. The owner of one or more shares in a company

10. To select or designate to fill an office or a position

6. Re-write these phrases as indicated:

1. The disadvantage of a sole proprietor is the personal exposure to

potential debts associated with a disastrous job. The sole proprietor may

2. Each partner is personally liable for all the debts of the partner-

ship. Each partner must

3. The ability of a small renovation contractor to grow depends

mainly on the training and business ability of the individual. The

small renovation contractor can

4. Comprehensive services will require that the general contrac-

tor or construction manager augment their staff with trained architects, accountants, real estate professional, management and leasing experts. The general contractor or construction manager must

5. A corporation is an entity that has the power to act as a separate

body. A corporation can

6. Public corporations publish financial reports yearly for the ben-

efit of the stockholders, as required by law. Financial reports must

7. In the case of a limited liability company, no member other than

the manager has any power or authority to blind the company. Only

8. Construction contractors are required to engage experts from various disciplines to advise and assist them in conducting their business. Experts from various disciplines

9. The accountant of a construction company is ideally one who

has experience in construction and accounting. Experience in con- struction and accounting should

10. When it comes to bonding, it may be advisable to deal with a firm that specializes in general contractors and their bonding problems. You should

7.

Watch Matt Stevens talk about the most important skills you

need when you start a construction business and answer the ques-

tions below:

a construction business and answer the ques- tions below: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zz7t5PCckW0 1. What are the

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zz7t5PCckW0

1. What are the two important skills you need when you begin your own construction business?

2. What is the old saying in constructions?

3. Which are the craft skills he mentions? Can you think of other craft skills?

4. Why is the craft skill more valuable?

5. What do you think “crawling” means in the business environment?

8. Translate the following text into English:

Societatea cu raspundere limitata se defineste ca fiind acea soci- etate in care raspunderea asociatilor pentru obligatiile angajate in numele societatii se intinde numai pana la capitalul social subscris iar asocierea are ca temei principiul intuitu personae. Acest tip de societate imprumuta caracteristicile de la societatile de capitaluri [corporate] sub aspectul constituirii capitalului social si al modului de raspundere al asociatilor, dar si caracteristica ce guverneaza societatile de personae, avand in vedere ca asocierea se

face luand in considerare calitatile personale ale fiecarui asociat si a increderii reciproce. Pornind de la aceste aspecte, putem spune ca societatea cu raspun- dere limitata are o constructie mai flexibila, fiind usor de constituit si fiind mai compatibila cu practica comerciala, fapt demonstrat de gradul ei de raspandire la ora actuala. Principalele trasaturi ale societatii cu raspundere limitata determi- nate de statutul juridic special sunt urmatoarele:

Asocierea se intemeiaza pe increderea reciproca dintre aso- ciati (caracterul intuitu personae)

Capitalul social se divide in fractiuni numite parti sociale care sunt netransmisibile

Asociatii raspund in limita aporturilor sociale aduse la con- stituirea capitalului social

Firma se compune dintr-o deunumire aleasa de asociati si care trebuie sa indices au sa sugereze, pe cat posibil, obiectul de activitate al societatii

Se poate constitui si poate functiona cu un sigur asociat

(http://www.scritube.com/economie/SOCIETATEA-CU-RASPUNDERE-LIMIT43569.php)

9. In teams of 5, go back to the text about types of businesses and, based on the text and your personal knowledge, brainstorm the advantages and disadvantages of each type of business from the perspective of a young civil engineering graduate. Consider aspects such as upward mobility, professional development, social and communicational skills, other benefits (company car, laptop, etc.). Present the final result in the form of a report and debate it with the other teams.

Unit 10 – Writing for business

Writing for business consists of an array of documents such as let- ters, reports, memos, notices, fax messages, etc. The new communication media – the internet – made it possible for the people to communicate faster and easier. Unfortunately, many people believe that the email message replaced all the other forms of business written communication and they use it improp- erly and excessively in the business environment. Companies appreciate university graduates who can communicate adequately in the business environment. This means being compe- tent in communicating with a wide variety of professional groups by means of specific documents. Whether your message reaches its recipient by regular mail or e-mail, a letter should still look like a letter. Most of the times, a properly written business document makes the difference between being in business and being out of business. When writing for business, you can use a step-by-step plan, much alike the one presented in the unit dealing with writing for science.

Step 1: Identify the type of document

There are many different types of documents found in the business environment. The most used ones these days are the letter, the report, the memo, and the notice. They serve different purposes and they have different layouts because they are sent to differ- ent professional groups. Here are the general guidelines related to the recipients, purpose and layout of the most important business documents:

The business letter

Recipients: clients, business partners, suppliers, public institu- tions, etc. Purpose: to propose, offer, respond, complain, negotiate, etc.

Structure and layout:

Sender’s address (or company headed paper) Recipient’s address Date The international standard is date in numbers, month in letters and year in numbers Salutation Dear Mr. Johnson Dear Ms. Thomas (when you do not know whether the woman is a Mrs. or Miss) Dear Professor (when the person has a title) Dear Chris Brown (when you are not sure of the person’s gender) To Whom It May Concern (very impersonal, mostly used in letters of recommendation and letters of complaint) Avoid Dear Sir/Mme (not very polite) Paragraph 1 Friendly opening and stating the purpose of the letter Paragraph 2 States the main point of the letter, brings arguments Paragraph 3 Restates the purpose and requests form of action Closing salutation Yours sincerely Yours faithfully Kind regards Signature

The memo

Recipients: crew, all staff members, various departments Purpose: inform the recipients of decisions, provide instructions or convey recommendations

Structure and layout:

To

Recipient

From Sender Subject Very brief description of the matter

Message

the memo is usually sent by email

a copy is posted on special information walls

the message must be brief and to the point

lists are welcomed No closing salutation or signature

The report

Recipients: CEO, superiors, crew Purpose: analyze a situation, convey results and possible solutions

Structure and layout:

To

Recipient

From

Sender

Date

International standard: date in numbers, month in letters, year in numbers Title The essence of the report in a few words Introduction States the purpose of the report and who requested it Findings

contains the research method, and the data obtained

lists are appreciated as they ease the information extraction

You can also use full sentences if the message is better conveyed this way, but please keep the sentences short and the message to the point. Conclusions Provides the analysis of the research