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Voices of Minnesota’s multilingual writers

In the brief videos on this page, multilingual writers at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities share their insights about learning to write American academic English.

This project was inspired by Wayne Robertson's Writing Across Borders video (go to the Oregon State University Writing Center for more information).

Circe Saint Louis is an undergraduate student from Haiti working towards a degree in finance. He describes his own writing process and emphasizes the importance of both receiving and responding to feedback on one’s writing.

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Juan Fernandez is an undergraduate student from Peru working towards a degree in biology. Juan focuses on specific writing strategies and his own writing process, offering valuable advice for multilingual writers who find the writing process in a second language to be frustrating and time-consuming. Also, check out Juan's tutorial on Google It Up! A Tutorial on Selecting Just the Right Phrase.

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Ka Po “Josey” Chow is a graduate student from Hong Kong working towards her M.Ed. in second languages and cultures education. She compares English and Chinese academic writing and suggests several reading and writing strategies for improving one’s writing.

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Qianhui Gong is an undergraduate student from China working towards a psychology degree. She presents strategies and specific examples from her own writing process that may prove valuable to other multilingual writers.

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Raamesh Deshpande is a graduate student from India working towards his PhD in computer science. His unique experiences in this technical field have provided him with interesting strategies and insights into the writing process.

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Romaric Zongo is a graduate student from Burkina Faso working towards his PhD in learning technologies. He discusses the challenges he faced as an adult learning English, and he shares his ideas about getting feedback from friends and family and utilizing technology to improve one’s writing.

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Andrew Cohen has been a professor in the Program in Second Language Studies for over 20 years. Drawing on his vast experience teaching and learning languages, Andrew shares perspectives on helping writers learn expectations of academic English.

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Eric Nelson is a Senior Teaching Specialist with the Minnesota English Language Program and has taught English as a Second Language at the University of Minnesota for over 30 years. Using examples from his own teaching, he discusses what readers expect from academic writing and how reading itself helps one become a better writer.

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Kit Hansen is a Non-Native Speaker Specialist in the Department of Writing Studies. Drawing upon her experiences abroad, Kit addresses the challenges that multilingual writers face, including plagiarism and writing process.

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Sachiko Terui is a Teaching Specialist from Japan in the Department of Asian Languages and Literatures. She describes her own struggles with writing and how writing her undergraduate thesis—on how Non-Native English Speakers often pretend to understand Native English Speakers—helped her become more comfortable with seeking feedback on her writing.

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Sheryl Holt is the English Composition Coordinator for Non-Native Speakers of English in the First-Year Writing Program and has taught English as a Second Language for more than 30 years. In this interview, she addresses the anxieties students have about writing and recommends resources for using the library and learning more about plagiarism.

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These videos were developed by the Center for Writing with generous support from the CLA Student Technology Fee Committee.