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Purdue University

Communication for Engineering Leaders

Purdue University via edX


The goal of this course is to upskill talented engineers’ communication abilities. Engineers at all stages of their careers will find helpful guidance and dedicated space for practicing skills necessary for more effective communication with teammates, clients, and employees and/or pursuing the next level of leadership opportunities.

By the end of the course, students should have new adeptness at creating and delivering powerful presentations and documents on short deadlines, applying laser focus to their intended audiences, resolving conflicts, and leading others effectively. We will also make plans for both leveraging our identities as aspects of our communication strengths and training the next crop of leaders at our companies.

Required materials:

  • Communicate with Mastery (Schramm & Peterson, ISNB: 1119550092)
  • HBR's 10 Must Reads 2020: The Definitive Management Ideas of the Year from Havard Business Review (ISBN: 1633698122)
  • Connect First (Katzman; ISBN: 1260457834)


Week One: Adopting a Communication Mindset

Know your audience. Know your purpose. Know your key points. Then turn them into a strategy.

Week Two: Verbal Communication

Body language. Spoken language. Reducing anxiety. Giving and receiving constructive criticism.

Week Three: Workplace Communication

The roles of respect, loyalty, and emotional intelligence in effective communication.

Week Four: Written Communication

How to write with impact – and edit effectively.

Week Five: Workplace Atmosphere

How communication resolves conflict and fights fear.

Week Six: Communication Styles and Considerations

Why your style matters. What different styles mean for leadership, communication, and collaboration strategies.

Week Seven: Workplace Leadership

How communication (and good questions!) affects your leadership impact.

Week Eight: Communication Leadership

Scaling your leadership with a legacy plan.

Taught by

Brooke Parks

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