Course code Valo2060

Credit points 2

Professional English for Civil Engineering

Total Hours in Course80

Number of hours for seminars and practical classes32

Independent study hours48

Date of course confirmation17.03.2021

Responsible UnitLanguage Centre

Course developer

author lect.

Irina Orlova

Mg. philol.

Course abstract

The study course is aimed at the of development of students’ foreign language (English) knowledge and skills necessary for comprehending, interpreting and evaluating professional information, explaining and comparing processes, participating in discussions, giving presentations in professional and academic environments as well as for communication with foreign students, specialists and academic staff. The focus is on the terminology related to building and civil engineering. The English language proficiency level corresponds at least level B2 according to the Common European Framework of Reference for foreign languages.

Learning outcomes and their assessment

Knowledge and understanding field terminology.
Students know terms from the field of:
- building materials, working materials, (Test No. 1),
- building construction, systems, finishing works, design development and design drawings (Test No. 2).
students are able to define terms, select professional information, explain procedures in relation to building and construction engineering, think critically, participate in discussions applying professional terminology and communication skills: in written form - writing descriptions of procedures, business letters; orally - in discussions, dialogues, giving a presentation.
Competence of professional and academic English language in order to apply it creatively in spoken and written communication for student mobility, professional and academic activities in international environment.

Course Content(Calendar)

1. Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technologies. Faculty of Environment and Civil Engineering. Curriculum vitae and cover letter writing. 2h
2. Construction engineering. Types of buildings. Construction projects. Job interview. 2h
3. Architecture. Architectural styles. Building elements. 2h
4. Building site. Building machinery and equipment. 2h
5. Structural mechanics and geometry basics. Technical description. 2h
6. Interior and works. Tools. Instructions. 2h
7. Materials. Classification and basic characteristics. Materials technology. 2h
8. Metals: ferrous and non-ferrous. Compounds and alloys. Non-metals. 2h
9. Steel and steel structures. Corrosion. 2h
10. Masonry work. Stone and brickwork. 2h
11. Concrete types. Mixtures, aggregates, batching. Describing technological process. 2h
12. Reinforced concrete. Reinforcement. Recycling concrete. Inquiry letter writing. 2h
13. Polymers. Natural and synthetic polymers. Thermoplastics and thermosets. 2h
14. Minerals, ceramics and glass. Metallic and non-metallic minerals. Types of glass. 2h
15. Timberwork. Tree species. Softwood and hardwood. Timber production. 2h

16. Materials working. Machini

Requirements for awarding credit points

Assessment: Formal test with a grade.
It is made up of cumulative assessment.
Successfully written 2 tests, the glossary of terms for each topic, timely completed home works, completed individual work (reading of professional texts, presentation on a selected topic, the glossary of terms). Tests and home works are with a positive evaluation. The number of the missed classes do not exceed 20%.

Description of the organization and tasks of students’ independent work

Individual work:
1. Reading of the independently chosen professional texts (the amount: 10 000 characters);
2. Prepared PPoint presentation and oral presentation (5-10 minutes) in front of the class;
3. Submitted glossary of terms

Criteria for Evaluating Learning Outcomes

The cumulative assessment is composed of the grades in two tests and a presentation of the individual work. The grade in tests is successful if at least 70% of the answers are correct. All home works should receive a successful grade.

Compulsory reading

1.Bonamy D. Technical English 2 (Pre-inter). ISBN 13: 9781405845540 ISBN 10: 1405845546 Pearson Education Ltd, 2008. 124 p.
2. Ibbotson M. Cambridge English for Engineering. ISBN-10: 0521715180. Cambridge ; New York : Cambridge University Press, 2008. 112 p.
3. Ibbotson M. Professional English in Use. Engineering. ISBN-10: 0521734886 | ISBN-13: 978-0521734882, Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2009. 144 p.
4. Caruzzo P., Flash on English for Construction. ISBN
8853614501 (ISBN13: 9788853614506). ELI, 2012, 148lpp.

Further reading

1. Evans V. et al. Career Paths. Construction – Buildings. ISBN: 978-1-4715-6252-5. Express Publishing, 2011. 140 lpp.
2. Graham P. Building Ecology: first principles for a sustainable built environment. ISBN-10: 0632064137 | ISBN-13: 978-0632064137. Oxford: Blackwell Science, 2003. 290 lpp.
3. Badger I., Pedley S. Everyday Business Writing. ISBN: 0582539722, Harlow : Longman, 2003. 95 lpp.
4. Love T. W. Construction manual: concrete and form work. ISBN 10: 0910460035 / ISBN 13: 9780910460033. Craftsman Book Company, 2005. 158 p.

Periodicals and other sources

1. Building Design and Construction. ISSN 0007-3407
2. Latvijas būvniecība : ceļvedis būvniecības nozares virzītājiem. Rīga: Lilita. ISSN 1691-4058.
3. Civil Engineering. Publisher: American Society of Civil Engineers. ISSN 0885-7024 [skatīts 10.03.2021.]. Pieejams EBSCO MasterFILE Premier:


The course is designed for civil engineering students and is included in the compulsory programme.