We need to use the write stuff

We need to use the write stuff

Many of my students don’t like to sketch because they feel they aren’t good at it. I tell them, this isn’t an art class, it’s a class in learning to solve problems using a structured process and to communicate the results using a technical vocabulary and tool kit (e.g., computer software like Autodesk Inventor and Microsoft Excel). Sketching, like writing by hand, engages the mind integrate vision with the tactile expression of ideas via words, or in class, via sketches: it’s all about communicating what’s in our head so others can understand.

I found this article by a local business writer about writing by hand in this age of ubiquitous digital technology to reinforce my instructional philosophy. The author cites some research that also supports this belief.

(A)n MRI brain scan showed subjects in the handwriting group had activated their brain’s visual and motor systems, as well as their brain’s emotional centers. Chen not only called writing by hand a creative activity, but a visual-spacial process, which could explain why we remember written appointments better than those typed into a smartphone.

There’s also this from the “Reviving the Lost Art of Manliness

By scanning the brain, researchers have found that writing by hand improves memory, cognitive activity, and the expression of ideas.

Write on!


I don’t make this stuff up: Engineers Need to Know How to Write

Engineers Need to Know How to Write

“As a practicing engineer, you will need to write reports, proposals, scientific papers, and electronic messages. Writing is perhaps the most important way in which you will convey your ideas to managers, other engineers, and customers. Your communication skills will therefore determine how successful you are as an engineer, perhaps even more so than your technical expertise.”

Read the article here 


Document Control

Project Management: Document control

Engineers write (document) a LOT! In fact many companies require engineers to maintain good records using standards.

One of the major forces in today’s world of engineering and technology is Quality Management Systems which is itself driven by the demand for better product and process quality. Poor, missing or incomplete documentation costs businesses $$$$ and can actually cause harm/damage to users. In our class You will need to keep track of things in an organized and structured manner. Develop good writing and documentation  habits now and you will kick a** in college and your career.