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This textbook was originally written in the Croatian language by Petar Jandrić. Due to growing number of international students at the Polytechnic of Zagreb, it has been translated into English by Lamia Egartner. Author has not intervened in the language and style of the translation. Judging from wide popularity of the textbook at higher education institutions in Croatia, we do hope that this translation might grab attention of an international audience.

We must warn the international readers that this translation is far from complete. All textual materials within the textbook have been fully translated. However, it is impossible to analyse subtleties of live communication through subtitling or dubbing, so video material has remained only in Croatian. Furthermore, the textbook contains many layers: more often than not, it is a mere starting point for further exploration of weblinks and external sources. For some external sources, the interpretor has managed to find direct English translations. Where such translations were not available, we decided to leave Croatian originals. Theoretically, it would be possible to find conceptual equivalents in English for each and every source in Croatian – but that would mean writing two different versions of the textbook and bring serious consequences to our classroom. We are convinced that international audience will find more than enough material in the English language. Where this material is not offered within the textbook, we would like to encourage readers to do independant web searches. Last but not least, author of the textbook will be more than happy to answer any inquiries and / or provide further advice – feel free to contact him anytime with your suggestions and questions.

The goal of the textbook is to raise the students’ awareness and understanding of the basics of communication process, and to enable them to acquire the techniques and skills required for successful communication with individuals, in groups and with the audience. The textbook promotes humanistic values such as co-responsibility, the right to be included, accepted and respected, the freedom of expression, and the tolerance of differences.

Practical classes in Communication skills include thirteen chapters, each of them containing three units. The first unit contains the goals of practical classes, description of the required preparation, modes of carrying out the classes and, if necessary, some important notes. The second unit contains video recordings of live practical classes; in order to be more easily followed, they are divided into shorter recordings presenting introduction, work of every single student. discussion, and conclusion. The third unit gives the theoretical background of the practical class. Each unit ends with bibliography. Structure of the chapter is linear, while practical classes are given in sequence from the introduction to the last lecture in a semester.

However, this textbook provides much more than just the linear review of the contents. The relevant information on the textbook is contained in the menu above, while the menu on the left includes a number of links to the general information such as recommended bibliography and short suggestions for more successful search for information, but also more specific information for the students of the Zagreb Polytechnics, such as the instructions for writing a seminar paper and the thorough list of the student’s obligations. Apart from its own contents, the textbook includes a number of carefully selected links to external contents such as electronic books, textbooks, professional and scientific journals… Thus it can serve as a good starting point for writing final exam or graduate thesis.

To start with, I invite you to read instructions how to use the textbook,to study basic information on the subject, to read the introduction briefly describing why the students of science and technology study communication skills and – the most importantly – to get to know our students and teachers!

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