Thursday, September 23, 2010

Welcome to EAP 1

It's a new semester at the University of Calgary, and I am teaching a wonderful new group of students in the English for Academic Purposes (EAP) Program in the Faculty of Education. The program is very intense. There is a lot of homework, but the good news is that I do believe that people who go through the program come out on the other side with the English they need to be successful in their studies.

My students this semester are a really great mix of people, and I think a lot of new friendships are going to be made in the class that are going to last a lifetime. I'm very excited to start this new blogging project with them, and I can't wait to read what they have to say about life, the universe and everything! As for myself, I've been blogging for almost six years now. It is still my favourite writing project, and I love blogging with my students. I hope they are going to enjoy it as much as I do.

By the way, this blog post is 198 words. That's about how much my students have to write every week!

Happy Blogging!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Link to my PhD Thesis

I’m finished! I had my Doctoral Thesis Oral Defence on August 24, 2010, and I survived! In fact, I even passed with no revisions necessary. In the end, it was actually a great experience. My doctoral committee consisted of my supervisor, Dr. Hetty Roessingh, the Chair for English as an Additional Language (EAL) at the University of Calgary, Dr. Thomas Ricento, the former Dean of the Faculty of Education at the University of Calgary, Dr. Bruce Clark, Dr. Tania Smith from the Department of Communication and Culture at the U of C, and Dr. Leila Ranta from the Faculty of Education at the University of Alberta. They asked some pretty hard hitting questions, and at first I was quite nervous, but I soon warmed up to the topic. After all, I had been living and breathing the study of vocabulary in terms of lexical breadth and depth for four years! After passing my oral examination, we all went to the Grad Lounge for my free bottle of champagne. I think I was in a bit of shock after the exam. It hadn’t really hit me yet that I was finished. However, when I got home and realised that I didn’t need to lock myself in my office (which is in the garage) and work on my thesis for three or four hours, I just started to cry. I don’t know if they were tears of relief or happiness or angst, but I think I sat on my couch and wept for almost two hours. I have to be honest. It was so hard writing that thesis and teaching full time. However, now it’s over and after all is said and done, it was all worth it. Here is the link to my thesis: