ABET has proposed new changes to the EAC's Criteria 3 that will take effect in 2018. Among many changes and rearrangements is the introduction of the term 'engineering judgment' as one of the competencies students must develop to prepare them for professional engineering. However, engineering judgment is not defined in the criteria, and while it is a ubiquitous concept in the philosophy of engineering and engineering education, there is little empirical investigation into what counts as engineering judgment in practice. Furthermore, there is even less conceptual or empirical investigations into communication's role in the practice of engineering judgment. Ethnographic data reveal engineering judgment may be fruitfully understood by educators preparing today's engineers working in teams and multidisciplinary, sociotechnical environments as not a cognitive and individual ability to apply technical knowledge, but instead a capacity of participants to rhetorically establish common cause to interrogate and reflect on technical data and situations.