Below are some online and print resources that can help you with your writing skills.
These books will help you with general concerns for writing in engineering:
- Engineering Communication: From Principles to Practice (written by R. Irish & P. E. Weiss, published by Oxford University Press, 2009). This book provides the most complete and useful information to improve your writing. It is meant as a course book and it requires a lot of reading, but it is very helpful.
- A Guide to Writing as an Engineer (written by D. Beer and D. McMurrey, published by John Wiley & Sons, 2005)
- Scientists Must Write: A Guide to Better Writing for Scientists, Engineers, and Students (written by R. Barrass, published by Routledge, 2002)
- Engineering Your Report: From Start to Finish (written by L. A. Krishnan, R. Jong, S. S. Kathpalia, T. M. Kim, published by Prentice Hall/Pearson, 2003). This book was written especially for second language speakers of English but could be useful for anyone.
The American Society of Civil Engineers has some useful writing-related resources:
- Guidelines for handling references: http://ascelibrary.org/doi/abs/10.1061/9780784478998.ch17
- ASCE’s writing style recommendations for their publications:http://ascelibrary.org/doi/pdf/10.1061/9780784478998.ch11
- Professional Communications: A Handbook for Civil Engineers (written by H. Silyn-Roberts, published by ASCE Press, 2005). Chapter 17 contains grammar and style information.
If you need information on standard written English grammar and mechanics, consult these resources:
- Purdue’s Online Writing Lab (OWL) - http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/section/1/ - Check the Mechanics, Punctuation, and Grammar sections
- Information and exercises especially for English as a second language students at OWL:http://owl.english.purdue.edu/owl/resource/678/01/
- A writing handbook by any major publishing house (for example, the Prentice Hall Reference Guide to Grammar and Usage published by Prentice Hall or The Essentials of English: A Writer’s Handbook published by Longman). Be forewarned that such handbooks are fine for the mechanics of writing, such as punctuation, but they are not written to address the specific concerns of civil engineers.