Course syllabus

FSP046 English for Engineers (7.5 credits)
Study period 1 and 2, autumn 2023

English for Engineers is an optional English language course offered by the Department of Communication and Learning in Science and open to Chalmers students from any discipline.

To take the course, a grammar diagnostic test (in EngOnline) must be taken prior to the start of the course, and a score of at least 60% attained (if you get lower, or just above, contact the course manager to discuss if this is a course you could manage). To sign in at EngOnline, a Chalmers ID is needed to log in, and use this step-by-step guide.

Schedule note: This course runs over both study periods 1 and 2, which means that this 7.5 credit course runs between 28 August 2023 and 14 January 2024, with sessions occurring almost every Thursday afternoon, on campus. Note though that if all assignments are completed on time, results can already be provided before Christmas.

  • Also: Because this is an optional course, this course can clash with other courses in study period 1 and 2. However, contact the course manager for any issues - sometimes there is a workaround.

An outline of each week’s activities and assignments can be found below under "Schedule". The Canvas Calendar function is also useful for keeping track of these.

Contact details

Ideally, please use your Canvas Inbox as the main channel of communication for personal questions. For course questions that all students can benefit from knowing the answer to, please use the discussion forum. For general course updates or information, the teacher will communicate via Announcements.

Course purpose

The aim of the course is to enable students to reach an academic level of proficiency in English. This means developing students' ability in English for academic studies at the Master's level as well as in professional life.

Learning objectives

The successful student is able to use English effectively and appropriately in advanced academic studies as well as in professional settings. This includes the following:

  • write and revise a variety of texts, both academic and professional.
  • select and structure information in paragraphs, sections, and chapters, keeping the audience in mind.
  • adapt and present information for different oral communication contexts and different audiences.
  • analyse sentences from a grammatical viewpoint and revise for effective communication.
  • give and receive constructive criticism on written and oral work
  • process reading material to use in academic texts.
  • use references appropriately and correctly.

Study plan

Course design

The teachers and course participants meet once a week. These meetings usually consist of some lecture input, class discussion, and other relevant activities. These can include a focus on the different genres covered in the different assignments in the course, input related to general English proficiency in the academic setting, and some peer response on each other's work. The course aims to use the time in class for active learning. In other words, more reading-type activities are expected to happen outside of class time.

Teaching and assignments

  • Teaching: shared between the two teachers.
  • Assessment: shared equally between the two teachers. Assessment details for each assignment is available on the submission pages. For course grading, see the section below "Examination Form".
  • Process-oriented approach: all writing assignments go through at least one draft and one round of peer response (Peer Reviewing: A Brief Guide).
  • Deadlinesit is important that you keep to the deadlines. If you have any issues with meeting the deadlines, please speak to or email the teachers. 
  • Revisionsshould assignment requirements not be met, revisions will be requested. Further details under each assignment.
  • Participation: active participation in the course and attendance in the meetings are expected. Please speak to or email the teachers if you have schedule issues.

Working with Canvas

For some of you, working in Canvas, the learning management platform in Sweden, might be new, and therefore, I recommend taking a look at the following pages for tips and guidelines:

It is important to be aware that every teacher may utilise the Canvas learning platform differently. The links above provide good guidelines in general. But there may be some deviations. For example, on FSP046, there are just two modules: Course Information and Sessions. To help you navigate this course's Canvas setup, we have created a guide: Navigating FSP046's Canvas pages


The course has a teaching slot on Thursdays 13.15-17.00. Some weeks, the sessions will be a bit shorter. TimeEdit only gives you an indication of the date, time, and room. For more details, see the schedule overview below, which indicates which sessions are compulsory.

The schedule overview

There is also a page for each session accessible via Modules. Your 'Calendar' area in Canvas should also keep you organised (you'll see assignments and meetings there as long as the course FSP046 is selected). Anything in the Calendar should also appear in your to-do list on the Canvas home page. 

Please note that even though we may not always be in class until 17.00, we strongly recommend that you utilise the time of the session slot not in use each week to do some of the reading/watching of the material that you are expected to do (either what you didn't have time for the previous time or what is coming next) or even start/work on an assignment.

We are aware that this course can sometimes clash with other courses, so it is important to check session and assignment dates and times carefully. There are quite a few sessions that involve compulsory attendance due to assignments happening during class: those are highlighted in orange in the schedule above. Any issues with attending these, please email the course manager sooner rather than later to see if a workaround is possible.

  • Before the first session (31 Aug), there are a few small tasks to do: take a look at "To do before class" on the first session page.

Course literature

  • Course literature consists of session material and other recommended materials. You should find what you need by looking under the section Course literature/materials in the module Course Information. This includes links to resources outside of Canvas and a link to the page called "Master list of materials", where all session material has been divided up into logical topic categories to make searching for specific course content more easily.
  • Some other study support resources

Changes made since the last occasion

  • The CV assignment has been removed and instead an optional CV workshop has been created towards the end of study period 1. This is a consequence of trying to improve student workload and providing a better placement of the task in the schedule.
  • Some sessions have been extended by an hour since some content was squeezed too tightly into a short space of time.

Examination form

Final grade

One final grade is given at the end of this 7.5 credit course, on a 3 to 5 Chalmers scale, with 5 being the highest mark. The final grade is based on:

(1) the grade from Part A (study period 1),

(2) the final oral presentation in Part B (study period 2), and

(3) the written proposal in Part B.

Each of these parts is worth one-third of the final grade. In order to receive the final grade, all assignments, including those that do not receive U-3-4-5 grades, which are instead just pass/fail, must be completed. Some tasks may require revision before a task is complete. Please note that these pass/fail tasks are compulsory because they are vital to the process-oriented approach that we use.

Criteria for assignments can be found under the submission page for each one.

Note on AI help: You should not use text generated from ChatGPT (or tools like it) for your work for this course. This course is about writing and presenting to help you improve your English writing and presentation skills in different contexts. Through carrying out the tasks on this course, in other words, through the process of writing, the intention is that your own thought, understanding and execution of these skills can develop. Not only that. Of course, directly submitting work (in whole or in part) that was produced by anyone other than yourself or your team members (on project team assignments) is considered a violation of Chalmers Academic Integrity Policy.  

PART A (study period 1)

The first part of the course focuses more on academic writing with some focus on general English language skills including written proficiency and some grammar. Subject-specific writing is the focus of the lectures, using a step-by-step process of structuring and editing texts with peer response as well as feedback from your teachers, to help you develop some useful writing strategies. You will also engage in in-class discussions. To make your writing and presenting training not only effective but individualised and team-oriented, we often work in small groups in sessions.

Writing skill concepts form the basis of most in-class input as well as prepare students for follow-up workshops and seminars. The oral proficiency training includes individual presentations and group discussions.

Grammar support is provided through our web-based tool EngOnline, which you are encouraged to use for self-study. There are some lectures that touch upon typical problem areas of some specific grammar categories. Most grammar training though happens through feedback and revision of writing assignments during both study periods.

The assessment during the first part of the course comprises

  • all pass/fail assignments (summary, source list, topic presentation)
  • a literature review assignment (which has been through the writing process – drafts and peer response), assessed as U (fail)*, 3, 4 or 5                               

PART B (study period 2)

Part B focuses a little more on professional English, including proposal writing, emailing, and further oral practice in the form of a meeting. 

The assessment during the second part of the course comprises

  • all pass/fail assignments (proposal idea meeting, email)
  • an oral presentation assignment, assessed as U (fail)**, 3, 4 or 5
  • a written proposal assignment (which has been through the writing process – drafts and peer response), assessed as U (fail)*, 3, 4 or 5

Note that both part A (study period 1) and part B (study period 2) must be completed to earn the final course grade.

*A grade of U will trigger a mandatory revision, uploaded through Canvas (the same portal as the initial submission). The highest grade for a revision is a 3. Note that more than one revision of a text may be required before a passing grade is achieved. 

**A grade of U will trigger a mandatory revision, to be scheduled with the instructor. The highest grade for a revision is a 3. Note that more than one revision of a presentation may be required before a passing grade is achieved.


Remember, Session 1 is on 31 August. And before we meet, there are a few small tasks to do: take a look at the "To do before class" column on the first session page.

Course summary:

Date Details Due