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Upcoming workshops: Student Learning Commons

The Student Learning Commons offers a suite of workshops under the following categories; Learning, Writing, and English as an Additional Language (EAL).

Workshops range from 60 to 90 minutes and provide valuable information in engaging formats.

Each semester we present a slightly different collection of workshops.

You can also search by date in our workshops calendarco-curricular record approved badge

Attendance at any Student Learning Commons workshop is eligible for inclusion on your Co-Curricular Record

SFU values diversity and is committed to inclusion. If you require any disability related accommodations in order to fully access and participate in this workshop/event, please contact us directly at library-workshops@sfu.ca. Please contact us as soon as possible as some accommodations will require lead time to arrange (i.e. CART, ASL).

Writing

How to Argue Academically

Effective argumentation is a core requirement of many writing assignments across the disciplines. Yet students are often unsure how to write a clear and compelling academic argument. It isn’t the same as arguing with your partner or your parents! In this 50-minute session, learn the particular rules governing academic argument as well as tips for developing and defending a solid argument in your written assignments.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, January 22, 2020 - 12:30pm to 1:20pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Saturday, January 25, 2020 - 10:30am to 11:20am Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Belzberg Library, SLC (Student Learning Commons), Rm 1002
Thursday, January 30, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:20pm Surrey, Fraser Library, SUR 3695 (Student Learning Commons, inside Fraser Library)

Don't Plagiarize! Ethical Source Integration

You know you are supposed to avoid plagiarism. And you also know that you need to use evidence in your paper to support your arguments. You just aren't entirely sure how to accomplish both things. This is the workshop for you! 

Come learn how to ethically summarize, quote, and paraphrase from your sources. Sure, this workshop will help you to avoid plagiarism, but more importantly, it will also help you to deepen your understanding of your source materials, and demonstrate that understanding in your own writing. 

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, February 5, 2020 - 12:30pm to 1:20pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 10:30am to 11:20am Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Belzberg Library, SLC (Student Learning Commons), Rm 1002

Structuring Ideas Through Grammar

Learn how to improve the clarity, logic, and flow of your writing.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, February 6, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 2290

Reading in the Arts and Social Sciences

Chances are, you are doing a lot of reading for your courses. But, did you know that there are different strategies for reading and that different academic tasks call for different kinds of reading? In this 50-minute workshop, we will introduce the 4 levels of reading and discuss the reading strategies that are most efficient and effective for working on research papers, critical analyses, and various kinds of tests.

This workshop will help you start your Reading Break off right, with tips to support you to become a more efficient reader and a more confident writer. 

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 12:30pm to 1:20pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 3008

Academic Style: Making Appropriate Stylistic Choices

Learn how to improve your stylistic choices of verbs, nouns, and other parts of speech as you write your assignments.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 1520

De-Cluttering Your Prose

"Too wordy. Redundant. Be concise." If you've ever received these kinds of comments on your papers--or if you just want to take your style to the next level--this workshop is for you! Learn techniques you can use right away to help you pare your prose and write with greater clarity, succinctness, and power. 

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:20pm Surrey, Fraser Library, SUR 3695 (Student Learning Commons, inside Fraser Library)
Saturday, February 29, 2020 - 10:30am to 11:20am Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Belzberg Library, SLC (Student Learning Commons), Rm 1002
Wednesday, March 4, 2020 - 12:30pm to 1:20pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200

Creating a Research Space

Are you writing the Introduction to thesis, a research paper, or paper for a publication? If so, register for this workshop to learn the Create-a-Research-Space (CARS) model for writing introductions. The workshop focuses on language strategies for reviewing previous research, indicating a gap in previous studies, and outlining the purposes of your research.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, February 27, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 1520

Hot Tips for Revising

Congratulations--you've drafted your paper! What's next? This workshop overviews a technique of revising higher-order concerns, then looking at the finer details of your piece. You'll also learn more about common errors that can trip up even strong writers. 

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, February 27, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:20pm Surrey, Fraser Library, SUR 3695 (Student Learning Commons, inside Fraser Library)
Saturday, March 14, 2020 - 10:30am to 11:20am Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Belzberg Library, SLC (Student Learning Commons), Rm 1002
Wednesday, March 18, 2020 - 12:30pm to 1:20pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200

Positioning Yourself as a Writer

Your stance or perspective is important in academic writing because it allows you to show your reader not only what you know, but what you think. In this workshop, you will learn language strategies for qualifying or moderating a claim and indicating your stance towards your claims.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, March 5, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 1520

My Plurilingual Identity: A Creative Writing Workshop

In this creative writing workshop, participants will draw a picture of themselves that represents their whole self (body) and then label it with all of the languages/dialects and cultures they know (and are learning or would like to learn about). Then, using the picture as a prop, participants will write a short narrative about their linguistic/cultural identities.  Participants will also be introduced to the Multilingual Student Story Hub on the Student Learning Commons blog, In Common, and be encouraged to publish their stories on the blog.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, March 12, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 2245

View a list of all undergraduate writing workshops offered by the SLC.

Learning

Improve Your Concentration & Reading Effectiveness

Do you drift off while reading and don’t retain much? Or do you get distracted easily in lectures? You are spending valuable time on these activities so you might as well increase your effectiveness by adopting strategies described in this workshop. 

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, January 20, 2020 - 10:30am to 11:20am Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Belzberg Library, SLC (Student Learning Commons), Rm 1002

How I Raised my GPA

Trying to raise your GPA?  Need some inspiration?  Come to this event and listen to other students, some of whom were On Academic Probation or Required to Withdraw, tell their stories of how they successfully raised their grades.  There will be time for questions, including the opportunity for individual discussion after the panel presentation, with refreshments provided.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, January 29, 2020 - 5:30pm to 7:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 3008

How to Succeed on Exams

Are midterms coming up? Or are you disappointed in midterm results and want to improve on your finals? This workshop will teach you which study strategies are shown by research to be the most effective, as well as how to manage your time when writing exams and deal with common types of questions: multiple choice, problem solving, essay and short answer.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, February 10, 2020 - 1:30pm to 2:20pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7301
Monday, February 10, 2020 - 1:30pm to 2:20pm Surrey, Fraser Library, SUR 3695 (Student Learning Commons, inside Fraser Library)

Reading for Writing, Presentation, or Discussion

To prepare for a paper, presentation or class discussion, you need to strike a good balance between using your sources with academic integrity, and expressing your own perspective based on those sources. Reading strategies, therefore, need to be very different that when you are reading to prepare for a test.  Come to this workshop to learn how to read effectively with this purpose in mind.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Monday, February 10, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:20pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7301

Reading in the Arts and Social Sciences

Chances are, you are doing a lot of reading for your courses. But, did you know that there are different strategies for reading and that different academic tasks call for different kinds of reading? In this 50-minute workshop, we will introduce the 4 levels of reading and discuss the reading strategies that are most efficient and effective for working on research papers, critical analyses, and various kinds of tests.

This workshop will help you start your Reading Break off right, with tips to support you to become a more efficient reader and a more confident writer. 

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 12:30pm to 1:20pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 3008

Successful Exam Writing

Focusing on the period immediately before and during exams, this workshop will touch on preparation and then discuss time management during exams, as well as common types of questions:  multiple choice, problem solving, essay and short answer.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, March 26, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:20pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7301
Thursday, March 26, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:20pm Surrey, Fraser Library, SUR 3695 (Student Learning Commons, inside Fraser Library)

View a list of all undergraduate learning workshops offered by the SLC.

English as an Additional Language (EAL)

Academic Grammar and Writing for Multilingual Learners (EAL)

Academic Grammar and Writing for Multilingual Learners is a seminar-style workshop series offered by the Student Learning Commons (SLC) and has been carefully designed to help you succeed as a multilingual learner of English. 

The workshop combines grammar for academic purposes, critical thinking, and academic writing for university. The content focuses on developing an appropriate academic voice to help you express yourself appropriately in academic writing as a member of the SFU academic community.  Students will complete several reading, writing, and grammar tasks, all of which will be used to provide personalized feedback.

Open to undergraduate students only.

The required workbook is Grammar for Academic Purposes by Steve Marshall. Students have the option of purchasing the online version ($23.95) or the book ($36.00 at the bookstore).

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, January 14, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Tuesday, January 21, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Tuesday, January 28, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Tuesday, February 4, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Tuesday, February 25, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Tuesday, March 3, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Tuesday, March 10, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Tuesday, March 17, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Tuesday, March 24, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm
Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200

Let's Talk!

Let's Talk! is a weekly workshop that gives students for whom English is an additional language an opportunity outside of class to improve their English conversation skills, learn strategies for academic success, and have fun meeting people.

Participants will develop their conversation and listening skills through a variety of topics, such as stereotypes, slang and idioms, social media, Canadian and global culture, presentation skills, pronunciation, and story-telling.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Tuesday, January 21, 2020 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Tuesday, January 28, 2020 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Tuesday, February 4, 2020 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Tuesday, February 11, 2020 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Tuesday, February 25, 2020 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Tuesday, March 3, 2020 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Tuesday, March 10, 2020 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Tuesday, March 17, 2020 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Tuesday, March 24, 2020 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200

The Plurilingual Café

The Plurilingual Café is a weekly workshop facilitated by volunteer peer educators. The goals are to recognize and celebrate the rich plurality of EAL students' everyday language practices and interactions. Tasks are designed to support student learning by fostering intercultural awareness among the participants, offering opportunities to learn more about each other’s languages and cultures, and by creating spaces for the use of languages other than English as tools for learning.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Wednesday, January 22, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Wednesday, January 29, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Wednesday, February 5, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Wednesday, February 12, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Wednesday, February 26, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Wednesday, March 4, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Wednesday, March 11, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Wednesday, March 18, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200
Wednesday, March 25, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:30pm Burnaby, Bennett Library, Rm 7200

Pronunciation Power: Message Units and Primary Stress

Learn how to putting primary stress on new information in content words can improve the clarity of your spoken English.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, January 23, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 2245

Fireside Chats

Warm up by the fire pits in Convocation Mall and enjoy some toasted marshmallows, practice your English, meet new people, and celebrate Friday!  Registration required.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Friday, January 31, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:20pm Burnaby, Convocation Mall Fire Pits (right outside the Bennett Library main entrance)
Friday, February 28, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:20pm Burnaby, Convocation Mall Fire Pits (right outside the Bennett Library main entrance)
Friday, March 27, 2020 - 2:30pm to 3:20pm Burnaby, Convocation Mall Fire Pits (right outside the Bennett Library main entrance)

Structuring Ideas Through Grammar

Learn how to improve the clarity, logic, and flow of your writing.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, February 6, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 2290

Academic Style: Making Appropriate Stylistic Choices

Learn how to improve your stylistic choices of verbs, nouns, and other parts of speech as you write your assignments.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, February 13, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 1520

Creating a Research Space

Are you writing the Introduction to thesis, a research paper, or paper for a publication? If so, register for this workshop to learn the Create-a-Research-Space (CARS) model for writing introductions. The workshop focuses on language strategies for reviewing previous research, indicating a gap in previous studies, and outlining the purposes of your research.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, February 27, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 1520

Positioning Yourself as a Writer

Your stance or perspective is important in academic writing because it allows you to show your reader not only what you know, but what you think. In this workshop, you will learn language strategies for qualifying or moderating a claim and indicating your stance towards your claims.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, March 5, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 1520

My Plurilingual Identity: A Creative Writing Workshop

In this creative writing workshop, participants will draw a picture of themselves that represents their whole self (body) and then label it with all of the languages/dialects and cultures they know (and are learning or would like to learn about). Then, using the picture as a prop, participants will write a short narrative about their linguistic/cultural identities.  Participants will also be introduced to the Multilingual Student Story Hub on the Student Learning Commons blog, In Common, and be encouraged to publish their stories on the blog.

Upcoming Workshops

Dates Location
Thursday, March 12, 2020 - 1:30pm to 3:20pm Vancouver, Harbour Centre, Rm 2245

View a list of all undergraduate EAL workshops offered by the SLC.