The Future of the Engineering Profession


Among various recent trends in the engineering pro≠fession computerization is the most widespread. The trend in modern engineering offices is also towards com≠puterization. Computers are increasingly used for solv≠ing complex problems as well as for generating, storing and handling the enormous volume of data modern en≠gineers must work with.

Scientific methods of engineering are applied in sev≠eral fields not connected directly to manufacture and construction. Modern engineering is characterized by the broad application of what is known as systems engineer≠ing principles.

Engineers in industry work not only with machines but also with people, to determine how machines can be operated most efficiently by workers. A small change in the location of the controls of a machine or of its position with relation to other machines or equipment, or a change in the muscular movements of the operator, often results in greatly increased production. This type of engineering work is called time-study engineering.

A related field of engineering, human-factors engineering, also known as ergonomics, received wide atten≠tion in the late 1970s and 1980s when the safety of nu≠clear reactors was questioned following serious accidents that were caused by operator errors, design failures, and malfunctioning equipment.

Human-factors engineering seeks to establish crite≠ria for the efficient, human-centred design of, among other things, the large, complicated control panels that monitor and govern nuclear reactor operations.


Exercise 6. Read and translate the following active words and word combinations.

Various recent trends; modern engineering offices; solv≠ing complex problems; enormous volume of data; scientific methods of engineering; systems engineer≠ing principles; greatly increased production; time-study engineering; human-factors engineering; serious accidents; malfunctioning equipment; human-centred design; complicated control panels; nuclear reactor operations.


Exercise 7. Translate into English.

Ўироко распространенное направление; производство и строительство; обработка и хранение данных; безопасность эксплуатации €дерных реакторов; огромное количество информации; современные инженеры; в разных област€х; мышечные движени€; оценка человеческого фактора; отказ из-за ошибки проектировани€; следить и регулировать; панели управлени€.


Exercise 8. Use appropriate expressions from the last exercises to answer the following questions.

1) What is the most widespread trend in the engineering profession?

2) What are computers used for in modern engineering?

3) What approaches are used in modern engineering?

4) What is УergonomicsФ?

5) What does human-factors engineering deal with?


Exercise 9. Look at these pairs of examples and decide where there is an УimportantФ change in meaning.

1) a) I remember shutting down the computer before I left the room.

b) Please, remember to buy a new disk.

2) a) They stopped to look at the machine operation.

b) They stopped looking at the machine operation.

3) a) I like studying the English language,

b) I like to study physics in the evenings.

4) a) It has started to rain.

b) It has started raining.

5) a) He needs to work harder.

b) This machine tool needs repairing.

Exercise 10. Put the verbs in brackets in the right tense form.

1) The engineers (go) away five minutes ago. 2) He usually (finish) his work in time. 3) They (work) abroad next year. 4) The representatives of that company (come) last week. 5) As a rule it (take) him an hour to shape a workpiece. 6) Machine tools usually (work) materials mechanically. 7) When he (work) there he (design) of more than 100 military aircrafts. 8) What you (do) in the morning tomorrow? 9) Time-study engineer (visit) our repair shop regularly last month. 10) Modern machines (be) often under numerical control. 11) I (wait) for you until you (read) an article.


Exercise 11. Read the passage below and complete it with the verbs from the list below. Put the verbs into the correct tense form.


Be (2), to be related to, try, involve, become


Computer engineering Е now the most rapidly grow≠ing field. The electronics of computers ЕЕ engineers in design and manufacture of memory systems, of cen≠tral processing units, and of peripheral devices. The field of computer science Е closely Е.. .. computer engi≠neering; however, the task of making computers more Ђintelligentї (artificial intelligence). Micro≠miniaturization Е.one of the current trends in computer engineering. During many years engineers Е. to place greater and greater numbers of circuit elements onto smaller and smaller chips. Another trend Е towards increasing the speed of computer operations through the use of parallel processors and superconducting materials.

Exercise 12. Translate the sentences into English using active vocabulary of the lesson.

1) —реди разных современных направлений в инженерии компьютеризаци€ занимает не самое последнее место.

2) Ќевозможно представить современную промышленность без компьютеров, которые помогают хранить и обрабатывать всю необходимую информацию.

3) Ќаучные методы работы примен€ютс€ в разных сферах производства.

4) »нженер следит за тем, чтобы станок работал более эффективно, что способствует значительному повышению производительности труда.

5) ќшибки оператора, недочеты в проектировании, неисправность оборудовани€ привели к тому, что были нарушены правила безопасности эксплуатации €дерных реакторов.


Exercise 13. Speak on.

Engineering profession has the future, doesnТt it?


Unit 4