English as a Second Language (ESL) Course for Arts, Sciences, and Engineering Graduate Students

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Week 9

This week we will be wrapping up our work on focus words/intonation. Getting this aspect of pronunciation right is one of the most important things you can do to improve your pronunciation.

We'll also be looking at "selling" ourselves to potential North American employers. One of the pragmatic (meaning in this context: cultural) questions we need to answer is: in a job interview setting what constitutes answering the question in a favorable way and what constiutes inappropriate bragging? Many internationals have difficult describing their abilities in a positive (yet truthful) light, so we will take a look at some verbal strategies and wordage to use.

We'll also explore the language needed to describe our professions in lay person's terms. Many internationals are baffled when they have to explain their jobs in simple, non-industry terms without the use of jargon. Yet, giving clear explanations without confusing terminology is a skill needed for both teaching and the workplace. Almost every industry professional - ranging from doctors to engineers - has to share expertise with industry outsiders such as patients or clients. Furthermore, for many positions, the hiring decision makers may not all be from your industry. It is good to think of jargon-free ways to explain how you can solve problems/be valuable to an industry or company.

November 3, 2014 - No homework due before this class.

November 5, 2014 - No homework due before this class.