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

Writing a Professional Email: 101

Published by Julia Lane

Former SLC English as Additional Language Peer Bessie W. returns with tips and tricks for writing a professional email. Just in time to help you reach out to your professor or TA to get clarification on those first assignments... 

Lost in Translation: Apna dhyaan rakhna in English

Published by Julia Lane

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 second post comes from former Writing and Learning Peer Educator and frequent blog contributor, Deeya B., and highlights her mother tongue, Hindi. 

Lost in Translation: Kerekere in English

Published by Julia Lane

The In Common Blog team is excited to launch this "Lost in Translation" series. In these 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. 

The idea for this series comes from Daniel C. suggestion to include more multilingual content on the blog. 

Our first post comes from English as Additional Language Peer Educator and frequent blog contributor, Ashley K., and highlights an Indigenous language spoken by her family, iTaukei. 

Flowery Language: Does it really make your writing more beautiful?

Published by Julia Lane

Former Writing and Learning Peer Deeya B. returns with another post to help you do well in your writing courses this semester. 

In this post, Deeya debunks myths about "flowery language' and the value of such language in academic writing. 

As Deeya explains, flowery language occurs when elaborate words are substituted for simple ones and longer sentences are used to try to convey multiple ideas. However, flowery language often backfires and makes students sound less confident in their understanding of a subject.

In this post, Deeya will explain more about what flowery language is, why students choose to use it, and why it often has the reverse of the intended outcome. 

How to get your writing done this semester...

Published by Julia Lane

Imagine this: you’re typing away ferociously with the little time left for you to hand in your term paper. It’s due tonight, and although you had three weeks to write it, there were other more important assignments on your plate. It’s not that you didn’t know you had to write this paper too, but you were pretty confident you knew what you wanted to say and could put all of your ideas into words in one afternoon. It is now the afternoon of your paper’s due date. You’re scrambling, fumbling over the keyboard, ideas circling in your head but all of them sounding like a thought vomit on paper. You’re tired, overwhelmed and unable to comprehend your own words. You rush to the SLC for a drop-in session, praying that your peer educator can work a miracle and save your grade...

In this post, Writing and Learning Peer Deeya B. shares pro tips to help you get your writing done this semester and get the most out of the Student Learning Commons. 

It isn't a miracle, a magic spell, or a silver bullet, but if you follow these steps, you may find that your writing process this semester is that much easier (or, at the very least, slightly less painful). 

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

Got Assignments? Get the Assignment Calculator!

Published by Julia Lane

It's that time of semester when assignment deadlines can start to feel like they are piling up on you. And, it can be especially hard to get down to work when the sun is shining! 

Let the assignment calculator help you to break down your assignments into manageable steps. That's just good project management! 

The common comma: Part 2

image of a comma
Published by Julia Lane

Welcome back to the wonderful world of commas!

SLC Writing Coordinator Amanda Goldrick-Jones, PhD, helps us understand the "unwanted comma," or when NOT to use commas in our writing. 

Missed Part 1? Check it out here

The common comma: Part 1

Published by Julia Lane

Perhaps you are starting to gear up for term paper writing? If so, you might be wondering when you are REALLY supposed to be using commas...

SLC Writing Coordinator Amanda Goldrick-Jones, PhD, returns to help us understand that common piece of punctuation, the comma... and maybe, just maybe, how to save our relationships?