Internship Students’ Workplace Communication Skills: Workplace Practices and University Preparation

By Ena Bhattacharyya, Shahrina Md Nordin and Rohani Salleh.

Published by The Learner Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

A graduate’s ability to communicate effectively can greatly affect their career development in the future workplace. Communication lecturers need to be equipped with the knowledge of the communicative needs of their technical students’ future working environment. With such awareness and knowledge, lecturers are able to make learning more relevant and meaningful and ease the transition of undergraduates from an academic setting to the workplace environment. Questionnaires were given to a set of final year technical students who had just returned from their 8-month industrial internship training at various organizations. The study identified essential oral internal and external workplace communication activities of the organization. Feedback was also obtained from the students’ with regard to the university practices and preparation required for workplace communication. The findings of this research will also provide an insight into the adequacy of university preparation for effective communication in an environment far different from the university setting. Thus, guiding these students in accordance with workplace requirements will not only bring about relevant and meaningful learning, but also result in effective participation in the said discourse community. The paper will also discuss the pedagogical implications of its findings.

Keywords: Communication Skills, Internal and External Communication Activities, Industrial Internship, Technical Students, Discourse Community

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 16, Issue 11, pp.439-452. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.287MB).

Ena Bhattacharyya

Lecturer, Language & Communication, Management & Humanities, Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS, Tronoh, Perak Darul Ridzuan, Malaysia

Ena Bhattacharyya, is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Management and Humanities, Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS (UTP), Malaysia. She is currently pursuing her PhD studies with the Faculty of Language and Lingusitics, University Malaya, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. She holds a Masters in English As A Second Language (MESL) from University Malaya and obtained her Bachelor of Arts (Education) Honors, from Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia. She teaches Professional Communication Skills and Thinking Skills. Her research interests include communication skills, workplace communication, technical oral presentation, public speaking and thinking skills.

Dr. Shahrina Md Nordin

Senior Lecturer, Management & Humantiies, Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS, Tronoh, Perak Darul Ridzuan, Malaysia

Dr. Shahrina Bt M Nordin, is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Management and Humanities, UTP, Malaysia. She completed her Phd. studies in University Sains Malaysia, Malaysia. She started her career as a lecturer at Institut Teknologi Perindustrian, Johor Bahru and was then recruited as Assistant Lecturer, at Multimedia University, Melaka. She has a Masters degree in TESL from University Teknologi Malaysia, Johor and obtained her first degree, in English Language and Literature, from International Islamic University Malaysia.

Rohani Salleh

Senior Lecturer, Management & Humanities, Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS, Tronoh, Perak Darul Ridzuan, Malaysia

Dr. Rohani Bt Salleh, is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Management and Humanities, UTP. She received her Ph.D in HRM from Leeds University, UK and her M.A (HRM) from Hull University, UK. Prior to joining UTP, she was an administrator for a private learning institution in Perak. She has served in a public university in Penang as a lecturer in the School of Management and taught at Open University on part-time basis. Her research papers have been presented in local and international conferences and research interests include human resource management, cross-cultural management and organizational behavior.

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