Student exchange programs are a great opportunity to travel, explore another culture and traditions, experience life in a different country and, most importantly, learn a foreign language. This is not the full list of the advantages of being an exchange student. However, there are also disadvantages which you can turn into strengths.
Whenever you feel homesick, you can become much more self-confident and independent by immersing yourself in a new culture. In fact, enduring a cultural shock is a good way of making new friends and mastering a new educational programme.
It is extremely important to overcome the language barrier to be able to achieve better learning outcomes and socialize with your peers. Naturally, your spoken language skills will be more advanced than the writing ones, but it is essential to improve the latter. Of course, you can easily buy an essay from professional custom writers, but what will you do if your girlfriend asks you to write her a romantic letter?
You are probably a little confused now, so let’s check out the below tips:
Read everything you can in English. Whenever you’re in the street, you should read every shop sign you see. Every time you have a quick snack, you should read what it says on the package. If you like reading, you should read books, magazines, newspapers, and social media feed in English. In so doing you’ll get your brain to memorize new words and idioms and expand your vocabulary. However, you need to make sure that you know the meaning of every word you learn to avoid misunderstanding. For the best results, put down all of them in a notebook or a note-taking app. Just write down the word and its meaning, so you will never forget it. Also, it is a good idea to choose interesting topics and books. Remember – reading should not make you sleepy!
- Make your grammar perfect. When you converse with native speakers, they may never recognize your mistakes because you can ‘mask’ them by using a lot of slang and changing pronunciation. But on the paper, it is all crystal clear, and you can not hide your poor grammar. Therefore, you should start by learning the basic rules, thus establishing a foundation upon which you can improve your language skills in the future.
Except for learning the rules, you should also do exercises to practice your writing skills. It’s only when you have mastered the beginner level, that you can move on to the intermediate one. One more important thing is to learn synonymous and antonyms, as well as idioms and metaphors. By translating poems and songs, you will also be able to pick up some new words and find out their meaning.
- Improve your handwriting skills. To become a good writer, you need to forget about your smartphone, tablet, and computer. All these gadgets usually have different spell checkers but when you write longhand you use only the vocabulary and grammar you know, thus improving your skills.
It’s also a good idea to keep a personal diary, write letters to friends or take short notes and make shopping lists. Don’t write anything intimate so you can have another person proofread it for you. Just choose some interesting topics and write about them.
- Explore different writing styles. At least once in their lives, each person has written an email, resume, cover letter or blog post. Students surely know what a thesis or essay is and how to write it. Therefore, when choosing a writing style, you should keep in mind the types of papers you’ll be dealing with.
There are special rules for each style of writing. Start by practicing something easy and gradually advance to more complex things. Also, it is important to proofread every text by yourself or ask someone to do it for you. The more styles you learn, the more you improve your writing skills.
- Correct mistakes. Reading and writing are important, but you should also be able to understand your mistakes. If you have a teacher, you need to make sure they give you enough writing tasks, correct them and provide you with a clear explanation of your mistakes.
If you learn the language by yourself, you should still find someone (maybe your friend or colleague) who could help you improve your skills. Even if you proofread things by yourself, you’re likely to overlook some serious errors. Also, it is a good idea to use editing applications – but you need to make sure they function properly.
Start by expanding your vocabulary before moving on to learning Grammar rules, practicing handwriting skills, learning writing styles and proofreading texts. Sounds easy, ha? But we assure you – it all works very effectively! So, if you want to improve your English language skills, you should write down all these tips and follow them on a daily basis.