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The Student Learning Commons blog is your online writing and learning community

Asian Heritage Month Book Recommendations

Hands of diverse skin colours
Published by Hermine Chan

May is Asian Heritage Month, and our SLC resident avid readers, Writing Peers Kitty C. and Jaden T., and Writing Coordinator Hermine, bring us some recommendations by authors of Asian descent in English and in translation. Enjoy!  

Lost In Translation: Gaa jau, everyone!

Published by Hermine Chan

In these Lost in Translation posts you can expect to read about common words and phrases that result in interesting (and sometimes funny) translations when we try to explain them in English. 

Contributions to this series come from across the SLC and we also welcome submissions from the wider university community. 

Our third post features Cantonese, one of the most difficult languages to learn for non-native speakers, but it is one of the dialects that sounds the closest to ancient Chinese. 

Speaking between two cultures: An interview

Published by Julia Lane

The SLC Conversation Partners Program pairs EAL students with volunteer peers. Conversation partners then meet on a weekly basis throughout the semester.

In this blog post, SLC Peer Bessie W. interviews two of her conversation partners to hear their unique perspectives on the program and their experiences at SFU. 

Reflecting on English as Additional Language Peer Educator Training

Published by Julia Lane

Guest blogger and English as Additional Language Peer Educator, Ashley K. writes this week about her experiences with EAL Peer training. In particular, she reflects on a lecture presented by Dr. Ena Lee, Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Education. Dr. Lee's talk focused on the "commonsense discourses" of English language learning, and how these "commonsense" ideas are often actually wrong. 

Ashley connects this talk with her experiences doing a "Pluriligual Identity" exercise and reflecting on her own connections with language learning, identity, and culture. 

 

Summer time, exam time

Published by Julia Lane

When Ella Fitzgerald sings "summer time, and the living is easy", she clearly isn't singing about students who are preparing for summertime exams! But, with the summer exam period one week away, the SLC team is here to offer you some helpful tips and tricks. They may not make your exams feel easy, but hopefully they will make your whole exam experience a bit easier

The parts of speech: The last 4

Published by Julia Lane

Welcome to second installment of our Grammar Camp series on the Parts of Speech. 

If you didn't catch it or want to review, check out last week's post, which covered nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and verbs.

This week's post covers adverbs, prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections

Thanks for Dr. Amanda Goldrick-Jones, SLC Writing Coordinator, for developing and sharing this content. 

The parts of speech: The first 4

Published by Julia Lane

In this Grammar Camp post, Dr. Amanda Goldrick-Jones, SLC Writing Coordinator, provides an overview of 4 basic parts of speech. There are 8 basic parts of speech, so stay tuned for next week's post about the last 4, and for two self-test quizzes for you to test out your newly acquired grammar know-how!

You can also jump to Part 2

Reading Guide

Published by Julia Lane

Get your summer semester off on the right foot by learning how to read smarter, not harder (or longer)!

Graduate Writing Facilitator Jennesia Pedri has generously shared with us a Reading Guide that she created to support her own reading during her comprehensive exams for her doctoral studies in the School of Communications. As Jennesia explains, the guide aims to help you read more efficiently and effectively. It also aims to make itself obsolete: eventually you won’t need it because you’ll begin to automatically ask yourself these kinds of questions as you read.

Join the Student Learning Commons Team!

Published by Julia Lane

The Student Learning Commons is scouting out new talent for our Writing and Learning Peer and English as Additional Language Peer programs. 

Both positions will allow you to develop transferable skills in the areas of client service, interpersonal skills, giving effective feedback, and cross-cultural communication, and will give you access to a professional reference as well as a private study/social space in the library.

We hope you will join our team! Apply now through http://myinvolvement.sfu.ca

Self-explanation for studying

Published by Julia Lane

I'm sure I don't have to mention that it is exam time! In this blog post, Donya Samadi --  PhD student in Educational Psychology and former Graduate Facilitator with the SLC -- shares how the concept of self-explanation can be applied to studying. 

Self-explanation, Donya explains, may be beneficial because information previously learned is recalled and integrated with new information to generate a self-explanation. In this way, self-explanation is a connection and elaboration to prior knowledge. When engaged in self-explanations, learners can develop new meaningful associations, and further understand the content they are studying.