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Chennai, India
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Just wondering about the effects this can have. Looking at the languages section here in the forum, i think teaching people engineering in their native language can have a greater impact. Here in India, engineering is taught in english and I see this as some kind of a limitation on articulation skills developed in students. So I'm looking to know how it is when students are taught in their native languages? The chinese have been a good example..but any personal experiences here among the members?
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Well I am english so I don't really think that counts.

It depends what you mean by engineering. The main part of engineering is universal in any language and that is the engineering principles, the numbers and the calculations.

Unfortunately (or fortunately for me), engineering is universally english (occasionally german) and that's just how it seems to be.
If you mean in terms of code and things like that then I do not see an easy solution. You could teach the code in a different language but that would only hinder people's progress later on if what they have learnt is not in the same language as what people use.

I am interested to know what you mean by engineering. Do you mean the subject, as in teachers speak english and it is completely taught in english or do you mean that principles are taught in english?

Mowcius
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Phoenix, Arizona USA
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No experience here, as I am the typical American tourist (actually, one thing that has held me back from overseas trips, aside from money, has been that I don't know a foreign language well enough for where I would want to visit, and I don't want to -be- the "typical American tourist").

With that said, though, I think the idea of teaching in a native language engineering and other skills is likely the best way to do things, but that you would need to have a good grounding in English (and how to express those same concepts in English) as well, simply because it (English) is the "lingua franca" of the world (for just about everything, it seems - not just scientific or engineering pursuits).

Which kinds puts lie to my first statement - since English is the "lingua franca" of the world (much like latin used to be), and doesn't seem to be dying out any time soon (though speculating on what might replace it could be an interesting discussion), why should I worry about a foreign language in order to travel? My own personal though on this, though not germane to this discussion, is that I don't want to appear rude and ignorant; our American society constantly crows about how foreign visitors and immigrants should "speak english", but rarely do people from here care about the opposite (doing as the romans do, and all that, I suppose). I am in the camp that says if I am travelling to a foreign country, it would be hypocritical of me to expect everyone to speak english.

I wonder if that puts me in a minority of Americans, in some fashion...?

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North Yorkshire, UK
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I am in the camp that says if I am travelling to a foreign country, it would be hypocritical of me to expect everyone to speak english.

I wonder if that puts me in a minority of Americans, in some fashion...?
Possibly. I agree but I am from the real english england ;D hehe

I do think that if you are going to another country you should speak their native language as foreigners do when they come here.
People with other languages do seem to accept that a lot more than native english speakers but I also so think that this is slightly because the language of maths and engineering is mainly english and this is at the basis of almost everything.

Lets not get this onto a talk about languages or immigrants though.

Mowcius
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Even in the US, where engineering is taught in English to people who speak only English and have probably never spoken any other language (oh, they "learned" a foreign language in school, but they can't really speak it), Engineers are infamous for "poor articulation skills."

But I can't imagine being taught in a non-native language; it was bad enough having teachers who were trying to teach in their non-native language...
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Lets not get this onto a talk about languages or immigrants though.

Wasn't trying to - as you (and others here) know, though, I have a tendancy to go off on tangents...

 smiley
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Engineering terms should comply with international standards, imo.
This means.. english, metric and other applicable standards (the date format for instance, day - month - year, or year - month - day).

This means a lot of annoyance when US stuff comes into sight, which basically only complies to the english part mentioned above. The thing that makes me wonder is.. I have never spoken to an american engineer that didn't feel the same way in regards to those international standards.. metric in particular (though they didn't seem to care about the date notation =P )


Also, I'd rather speak to tourists who just speak english to me.. as opposed to trying to utter broken words of dutch that make little sense smiley-razz
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