Global Resources in ESP: A New Book on Professional Communication in Healthcare

Hello, ESPers worldwide!

If you are engaged in English for medical purposes (EMP), then the following publication should be of interest to you.

Candlin, S., & Roger, P. (2013). Communication and professional relationships in healthcare practice. Sheffield, England: Equinox.

According to a flyer from the publisher of the book: “Communication and Professional Relationships in Healthcare Practice focuses on the crucial role that spoken interactions play in shaping relationships in contemporary healthcare practice…”

“…The authors apply theoretical concepts of communication to the workplace of healthcare, drawing upon scenarios based in the settings of clinical experience. The book presents a range of interactions (including consultations, team meetings, dialogues, and casual conversations) between health professionals, their colleagues and their clients or patients in a variety of settings. Drawing on the latest research in applied linguistics and professional communication, the authors introduce readers to a number of approaches that can be used to analyse these interactions. Using these techniques, readers will discover exactly how central themes of healthcare practice (including trust, empathy, expertise, and breaking bad news) are constructed through the communicative choices that participants make in these interactions.

Designed specifically for medical, nursing and allied health practitioners with an interest in communication, this book makes the techniques of discourse analysis accessible and provides ample opportunities for individual practitioners to apply this knowledge to their own professional contexts.”

In an e-mail that I received from Sally Candlin, she described the book as follows:

“To me the utility of the book is that the theory is embedded in professional practice – just as professional practice informs theory. So we want to emphasise its practical application and usefulness for healthcare practitioners. What we found in our learning and teaching is that the theoretical communication concepts we addressed were applicable to all professionals regardless of their discipline. It resonated with doctors, psychologists, IT consultants, audiologists, speech pathologists, ELT teachers, etc. They all could apply their new-found learning to their professional practices.”

The book was recently promoted by Professor Tim McNamara at the COMET (Communication, Medicine & Ethics) Conference in Melbourne, Australia.

As an ESPer, I think it is very important that we continue to grow in knowledge about professional communication because such knowledge enhances our program designs as well as our teaching.  EMPers and professional communication scholars are very fortunate to have this resource!

All the best,

About Kevin Knight

Kevin Knight
Kevin Knight (PhD in Linguistics, MBA, MPIA) is an associate professor in the Department of International Communication (International Business Career major) and has also been working in the Career Education Center of Kanda University of International Studies in Chiba, Japan. In the TESOL ESP Interest Section (ESPIS), he has served as chair and English in occupational settings (EOS) representative, and he is currently the ESPIS community manager. He was also a member of the Governance Review Task Force (GRTF) appointed by the board of directors. In addition, he has been a TESOL blogger in the area of English for Specific Purposes (ESP). He has more than 30 years of professional experience working for private, public, and academic sector institutions including Sony and the Japan Patent Office. His doctoral research on leadership communication (i.e., discourse) as a basis for leadership development was under the supervision of Emeritus Professor Christopher Candlin and Dr. Alan Jones.
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