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Series Overview

In this four-part workshop series, multilingual instructors will have the opportunity to develop and practice intercultural communication skills for teaching and learning in the American classroom.


Specifically, these workshops address cultural expectations and situations in the American classroom, language features of the American classroom, how to solve communication breakdowns, and how to use presentation tools strategically in instructional settings. These workshops are a collaborative effort between the OSU English Department, Graduate College, and English Language and Intercultural Center (ELIC).


Attendance at all four workshops qualifies as a Level 2 instructional activity in the OSU Graduate College’s 360° Critical Skills for Career Success professional development program. Attendees of 1-3 workshops qualify for a Level 1 activity in instruction or communication.


Workshop 1

Cultural expectations and instructional situations in the American classroom

In this first workshop, we’ll explore the instructional situations that are common in the American academic setting (e.g. office hours, lectures, discussions, etc). We’ll also describe and practice some of the different cultural and language expectations in these various instructional situations. This first workshop will feature experienced multilingual instructors who will be available to facilitate discussions and answer questions you may have about their experience in the American classroom.

Workshop 2

Linguistic features of the American classroom

The second workshop in this series focuses on common pronunciation difficulties (e.g. pronouncing ‘very’ as ‘wary’) and strategies to practice these pronunciation skills. Although these are important skills, research shows that these “lower-level” features have less of an impact on student understanding than “discourse-level” features like speech rate, pauses, and intonation. Thus, this workshop will also address common challenges with English intonation and strategies for addressing these challenges.

Workshop 3

Solving communication breakdowns

In any communicative interaction, regardless of language background, communication breakdowns are bound to happen. In this workshop, we’ll explore some common situations in the American classroom that can lead to communication breakdown and describe and practice some cultural and linguistic strategies to mitigate these breakdowns.

Workshop 4

Organizational and presentation strategies for academic presentations

In this final workshop in the series, we’ll explore and practice organizational and presentation strategies to support your language use in the classroom. Specifically, we’ll discuss ways that presentation tools like PowerPoint or LaTeX can be used to help your students follow your instruction more successfully and alleviate potential communication breakdowns.


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