Table of Contents
ISRN Education
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 617137, 10 pages
Research Article

Perceptions and Practices: A Survey of Professional Engineers and Architects

1English Department, Radford University Radford, VA 24141, USA
2Language and Culture Institute, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA 24061, USA
3Department of Math and Statistics, Radford University, Radford, VA 24141, USA

Received 7 December 2011; Accepted 10 January 2012

Academic Editors: T. A. Betts and L. Roecker

Copyright © 2012 Don Cunningham and Jill Stewart. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This descriptive cross-sectional research study examines perceptions of time spent by architects and professional engineers on reading, writing, and evaluating various information products, as well as their perspectives of specific quality characteristics and the relative significance in meeting work goals. Professional engineers and architects were surveyed at seminars held at eight locations in seven states. Descriptive statistics were then used to investigate perceptions and relationships. Findings indicate architects and professional engineers spend the most amount of time reading correspondence and the least amount of time reading management reports. Respondents considered correspondence to be the most important reading activity. Participants also spend the most amount of time writing correspondence, closely followed by nearly equal time spent writing and editing technical reports and proposals. Finally, participants rated organization, comprehensiveness, and accuracy as the most important aspects while indicating mechanical issues such as grammar and spelling as the least important aspects of technical documents.