Literacy is a social practice that happens as we engage in our daily business activities. Literacy is learnt as people get involved in different environments that associate them with various discourse communities. Every social activities and interactions teaches one how to think, talk, behave, and feel in a given environment. Some of the literacy practices that one can learn easily include eating appropriately, talking decently, and using proper manners. Chemical engineers operate in healthcare, manufacturing, design and construction, food processing, pharmaceuticals, petrochemicals, pulp and paper, specialty chemicals, and environmental health and safety industries, among others. In these industries, they rely on a diverse scope of knowledge to help them overcome technical troubles both economically and safely.
Chemical engineers apply their expertise in diverse area such as law, finance, education, medicine, and publishing, as well many other disciplines that require technical skills. It is with this regard that they need literacy in each of these environments. They also face similar challenges that other professionals go through such as the need for team work, communication, corporate accountability, and application of technical knowledge. Some of the literacy practices that are essential in chemical engineering include hard work, respect of fellow workers, honesty, accountability, and ability to work as a team. Since chemical engineers often work with other engineers from different fields, having a comprehension of their area of expertise and work will help in building up good and healthy relationship.
Given the varied fields of chemical engineering, one needs to have an international awareness. Chemical engineers often work in a global market that requires a deep understanding of the geographic, environmental, cultural, and economic factors that influences decision making. It is vital to note that any business decision an engineer makes will affect the entire business. Therefore, having a full understand of the business objectives and work ethics will help in becoming very effective and efficient as an engineer.