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In Common: The SLC blog

SLC Blog: In Common. A stylized image of a diverse group of students in a lecture hall

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

Facing White Privilege

Published June 15, 2020 by Julia Lane
thank you to Henry V. Robertson Jr. from Alert Bay, from the Nuxalk Nation in Bella Coola whose art is featured here

In this blog post, SLC EAL Coordinator Dr. Timothy Mossman shares some writing that he did during his doctoral studies in a class (EDUC 925 - Critical Literacies in Multilingual Contexts) led by Dr. Dolores van der Wey. 

The SFU Library recently issued the following statement about anti-Black racism and white supremacy: https://www.lib.sfu.ca/help/academic-integrity/solidarity-black-lives-matter 

We in the Student Learning Commons recognize that race-based violence is not new, nor simply an issue for us to pay attention to during "flashpoint moments" like the one we are currently experiencing. With this post, Tim shares part of his journey learning to see his own privilege. 

We share this post as encouragement for others as we take on this troubling, difficult, and necessary work. 

Trigger warning: this post includes references to residential school trauma and to homelessness. 

Come OUT! and Write with us…

Published June 4, 2020 by Julia Lane
Sharpen your pencils and your writing skills with write OUT -- a joint SLC/OOC writing initiative.

SLC Graduate Writing Facilitator Kate E. invites folks to join her for the Write OUT program -- a joint initiative of the Student Learning Commons and Out On Campus. 

Summer WriteOUT! sessions will include tips and tricks for:

  • Time Management (June 8th)
  • Writing Logically and Cohesively (June 15th)
  • Offering and Receiving Feedback (June 22nd)
  • Writing for Different Audiences (June 29th)
  • Making your Writing Interesting (July 6th)
  • Writing in English as an Additional Language (July 13th)
  • Respecting Writing in Different Disciplines (July 20th)
  • Descriptive and Creative Writing (July 26th)

All sessions are 11-1pm on Mondays. 

Welcome to the summer semester! A few housekeeping reminders...

Published June 2, 2020 by Julia Lane
It's that time of year again... check out our friendly housekeeping items to get started on the right foot!

By Daniel Chang

PhD candidate and SLC Writing Consultant Daniel Chang welcomes you to the summer 2020 semester and offers some important reminders for how to get the most out of this term.

Become part of the SLC team (virtual interviews available!)

Published April 14, 2020 by Julia Lane
Apply now to join the Fall 2020 cohort of EAL and Writing and Learning Peers at the SLC!

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 as part of posting #5254. The posting will be available until April 20, 2020.

A trauma-informed approach to difficult course material: Part 2

Published March 31, 2020 by Julia Lane
Taking a trauma-informed approach includes being intentional about your own learning journey - picking up what you want to take and releasing that which does not serve you.

SLC EAL Peer Ashley K. returns with more information about using a trauma-informed approach to learning. She shares more information about a trauma-informed workshop co-facilitated by Jennifer-Lee Koble and Jennifer Dehoney. She also offers 8 important self-care tips. 

To read the interview she conducted with Dr. Elise Chenier, click here

If you are in need of support, please reach out. A particularly good resource for immediate support is My SSP. 

A trauma-informed approach to difficult course material: Part 1

Published March 17, 2020 by Julia Lane
Red dress displays like the one photographed here have become powerful symbols of the genocide of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls across Canada

How do we take care of ourselves when we are introduced to difficult material in class? This is a question that SLC EAL Peer Ashley K. asked herself as she embarked on . her learning journey in HIST 436, which focuses on a close reading of Reclaiming Power and Place: The Final Report of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls

As part of her work to answer this question, she sat down to interview the course's instructor, Dr. Elise Chenier. This two-part blog series begins with a transcript of that interview. Here is a powerful idea that emerged from their discussion, 

"my main goals is not just know the breadth and depth of the problem intellectually, but to know it in their bodies. In my opinion, when you know it in your body, then it changes you, but to know it intellectually, you can still hold that at a distance and you don't necessarily see why you should change anything about the way you do anything" (Dr. Elise Chenier). 

In part two of this series, Ashley K. shares some self-care tips that she learned through a workshop offered by Jennifer-Lee Koble and Jennifer Dehoney during the class. 

Take care of yourselves. If you are in need of support, please reach out. A particularly good resource for accessing immediate support is My SSP

How they raised Their GPAs

Published February 7, 2020 by Julia Lane
Panelists at the inaugural "How I Raised My GPA" event. From left, Rayhaan Khan, Anastasia Kosteckyj, Shay Hayashi, Olan Sun, Jennifer Chou, and Ehsan Tehran.

SLC Learning Services Coordinator Ruth Silverman shares notes from the recent session "How I Raised My GPA." The event was wildly popular and invited current students to listen to their peers' stories about raising their GPAs. Stay tuned for the next iteration of this event, coming soon! 

The SLC Multilingual Students’ Story Hub: A place to share your stories

Published January 21, 2020 by Julia Lane
The SLC Multilingual Story Hub is a place to share your language learning stories

By Dr. Timothy Mossman, SLC EAL Services Coordinator 

In this post, Dr. Timothy Mossman introduces and invites submissions to the new Multilingual Students' Story Hub. The Story Hub is a forum for multilingual students to share their stories about events or critical incidents that occurred while learning or using English. 

Happy Holidays from the SLC

Published December 20, 2019 by Julia Lane
We wish you a happy... break from classes

Wishing you all safe and happy holidays. See you in the new decade (2020)!

Speaking between two cultures: An interview

Published November 26, 2019 by Julia Lane
Conversation Partners in conversation about language, learning, and SFU.

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. 

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