This course teaches students whose native language is not English how to read with good comprehension and to write clearly and persuasively in English.  The course consists of 20 hours of lecture, divided up into 10 meetings that last 2 hours each.

This course  is especially designed to meet the language needs of students who are preparing to enroll at an American university.  Its major aim is to raise the writing skill level of these students, ensuring that they will do well on the academic writing assignments that they encounter in their university classes.

Homework for the course will include writing exercises that students do following each meeting.  In between one lecture and the next, each student’s writing assignment will be read by a Tutors.University tutor, who will then meet with the student one-to-one, using Skype or another two-way communication platform, to review that assignment.  The student and the tutor will also discuss course content and review the progress that the student is making.

Course Syllabus

  1. Introduction to reading and writing academic English
    History of the English language
    The many aims of writing, ranging from diaries to story-telling, journalism, and scientific communication
    Varieties of academic writing: brief course assignments, longer essays, theses, dissertations
    Writing for publication
    Introduction to grammar and the writing process
  2. Grammar and accuracy in writing – Part 1
    Correct use of eight parts of speech: nouns, determiners, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions, and conjunctions.
    Sentence construction
    Punctuation and transitions
    Vocabulary
  3. Preparation: Gathering and organizing information
    Working individually and in groups
    Effective use of GoogleDocs and other communication media
    Initial discussion and brainstorming
    Choosing a thesis
    Reading sources and critical thinking
    Evaluation of Internet sources
    Originality and plagiarism
  4. Grammar and accuracy in writing – Part 2
    Word choice and phrase choice
    Irregular verbs and other features of the English language
    Idioms
  5. The spoken and the written word  (presentation by Adam Elder)
    Mastering the challenges of pronunciation, inflection, intonation, and diction.
    Dramatic illustrations of the relationships between written and spoken English
  6. The writing process – Part 1
    Developing your thesis
    Description, analysis, interpretation, and explanation
    Working with an outline
  7. The writing process – Part 2
    Logical order, paraphrasing, summarizing
    Quotations and references
    Writing a draft: opening, body paragraphs, conclusion
    Additional drafts and proof reading
  8. Persuasive writing
    Arguments, logic, observation, counter-arguments, fallacies
    Evidence: examples, statistics, and generalization
    Correlation and cause and effect
  9. Style
    Consideration of the intended audience
    The use of visual information, as in a PowerPoint presentation
    Rhetorical devices
  10. Review of the course

We  at Tutors.University aim to make learning English an exciting and rewarding  adventure. 

Our English language course, which combines lectures with one-to-one meetings with a tutor, is designed to raise your writing ability step-by-step. 

This is an effective way to improve your reading skill too, because reading well and writing well go forward hand in hand.