I came to Carleton University as an international student from Ukraine, where I studied teaching English as a foreign language and graduated with Master’s degree in Foreign Language Philology in 2013.

Since I have always been passionate about language teaching and had taught English for several years prior to coming to Canada, I decided to complete the courses required for TESL Ontario certification as part of my MA course of study. In June 2015 I completed my Master’s degree in ALDS. My research investigated the role of explicit instruction of formulaic expressions for developing and improving second language (L2) pragmatic competence. When I was in my second year, I started to receive part-time job offers from several language schools in Ottawa, where I did my TESL practicum and later volunteered as an ESL teacher. I am currently working as an ESL instructor at Graybridge Malkam, where I teach LINC (Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada) classes to newcomers to Canada as well as group and individual ESL courses for government employees at Health Canada

At the same time, I was extremely fortunate to be offered a research assistantship position by Dr. Janna Fox, who had been working on a longitudinal project on diagnostic assessment of academic writing skills of first year engineering students. I have been working with Dr. Fox since then and it has been a unique and valuable professional experience. I am extremely grateful to Professor Janna for giving such a great opportunity to me. As a result of my language assessment experience gained during my RA, I was hired as a linguistic scholar (writing instructor) by the Elsie MacGill Learning Centre that provides academic support for all 1st year engineering students. I want to emphasize that without gaining theoretical knowledge as well as practical experience during my MA program, I would not have been able to work as a language teacher with confidence.

I am currently a first-year PhD student at SLaLS, where I continue working with my MA thesis supervisor, a great teacher and mentor, Dr. David Wood. My present research interests lie in explicit teaching formulaic language and second language pragmatics, as well as in teaching formulaic expressions for enhancing grammatical competence.

One of the best things about the MA program in ALDS at Carleton is the great amount of support and guidance that all professors of our department are always willing to provide. Not only they help their students to succeed academically, but also share information on possible job opportunities where they can apply their professional skills and knowledge.

I strongly and without hesitation recommend this program to any Canadian or international students who are interested in pursuing graduate studies in the field of Applied Linguistics and Discourse Studies. This program will open doors to various opportunities for those who want to explore the power of language in use.

(Last updated: 2 September, 2015)