ALC2010 : Professional Communication Skills

Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


The module has the overall aim of preparing students for competent professional/cross-cultural communication in their future careers. It should also equip them with skills that will enable them to function with more confidence and competence during the rest of their degree programme. More specific module aims include:

To develop in students an understanding of the role of language and ‘culture’ in effective professional communication.

To provide an introduction to the theory behind professional communication in cross-cultural contexts informed by recent research.

To develop in students an understanding of how these theoretical frameworks can be applied to real-life, real-time cross-cultural professional interaction.

To provide the opportunity to practice a range of professional communication skills including oral and written presentation, teamwork in diverse groups, project management, and negotiation.

To develop students’ general cross-cultural understanding, awareness and communicative effectiveness.

To develop students’ critical thinking and research skills.

To develop in students an understanding of current thought on best professional practice in professional communication skills in cross-cultural contexts.

Outline Of Syllabus

Syllabus content includes recent research literature, case studies, skills and practice.

Week 1: Introduction to a conceptual model of skilled interpersonal communication
Week 2: Communicating without words: skilled non-verbal behaviour
Week 3: Working with others: the skill of participating and leading small groups and introduction of presentations.
Week 4: Working things out together: the skill of negotiation
Week 5: Finding out about others and showing understanding: the skills of questioning and reflecting
Week 6: Paying attention to others and getting your message across: the skill of listening and explaining
Week 7: Student group presentations
Week 8: Telling others about yourself: the skill of self-disclosure
Week 9: Standing up for yourself: the skill of assertiveness
Week 10: Using your influence: the skill of persuasion
Week 11: Opening and closing interactions
Week 12: Reading week and optional assignment Q&A

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture112:0022:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion401:0040:00Independent reading and research for student essays
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesWorkshops141:0014:00Provides students with an opportunity to practice a range of professional communication skills
Guided Independent StudyStudent-led group activity201:0020:00Students work independently on research projects in groups, inc. an associated oral presentation
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1041:00104:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

Lectures are delivered to introduce and discuss key knowledge areas. Student-lead projects and workshops provide opportunities to practise skills. Private study provides the opportunity to enable wider reading and critical evaluation of relevant studies, and to participate in presentation preparation.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Written exercise1M30GROUP PRESENTATION (Group research project and oral presentation to be delivered in week 6 or 7 of the module).
Essay1A702500 - 3000 words, hand in after the end of the module.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The student group project and essay assessments complement one another:

1. The student group project assesses students’ ability to effectively work in cross-cultural teams, to research a topic of relevance to the module content, and to prepare and deliver a professional oral presentation.

2. The individual essay assesses students’ ability to independently engage with theory and research on a chosen topic, and to produce a well-written and professionally presented essay.

Reading Lists