Tutor profile: Dominic F.
Subject: Study Skills
How do I give weight to an argument or a point I am trying to make in an essay?
You could consider Point, Counter-point and Refutation. After stating the idea you are trying to argue in an essay and explaining it in context to the question, adding a Counter-point and Refutation helps to persuade your reader by showing you are well read on your topic, you have considered the opposite to your argument and you are able to disprove the opposite viewpoint to your argument. Counter-point raises the opposite argument to your point and Refutation uses logic and personal viewpoint to try to disprove it. Example: "A Government's promotion of tourism can help the local economic development, so that more people understand the culture of the country and promote the friendly exchanges between countries." (Point) "There are some academics who claim though that this promotes destruction of the local environment and erodes sensitive areas of cultural heritage." (Counter-point) "However, in recent years governments have taken steps to protect these areas by using various environmental protection measures to help popular tourist sites..." (Refutation)
Subject: English as a Second Language
I've heard to watch out for 'False -friends' in language learning. What are these?
These are common mistakes that are made by language learners when two words that sound or look similar between two languages are mistakenly given the same meaning. For example: Embarazada (Spanish) and Embarrassed (English) Many students learning either language (Spanish or English), will hear or see these words and think they mean the same or have similar meanings. However 'Embarazada' means Pregnant in Spanish and doesn't have the same meaning as 'Embarrassed'. Spanish learners expecting to say 'I am pregnant', might say 'I am embarrassed' by accident instead. This can be even more tricky for English speakers learning Spanish (especially Male learners) when wanting to say 'I am very embarrassed' instead say 'I am very pregnant' (Estoy muy embarazada!).
I have a good ability in general subject learning, however I find learning foreign languages difficult. Why is this?
Most learners find subject or 'content' learning easier than form based learning. Learning to use a language effectively needs a proper understanding of form, that is the basis of learning a language, so that a student can use any vocabulary and phraseology correctly. There are different techniques to address this area of language learning. One popular foreign language learning approach is Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL). This uses a common subject (such as Science, Geography etc...) and this is taught in the target language being learnt. The content learnt in this subject helps to introduce and consolidate language and grammar patterns. The understanding of the contents helps stimulate language learning and vice versa. Many students currently learn uses this learning approach and have found it beneficial, especially in high school/post 16 study.
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