Level 2 students: welcome back!

by Jeanette Sakel

This is our beginning of term newsletter for our level 2 students studying English Language and Linguistics OR English and English Language at UWE Bristol!

The first year is over, you’ve got a good grounding in the field, and can go on to study some interesting topics! In particular, you will have some freedom in choosing what exactly you want to focus on (e.g. in language, skills and enterprise, where the assessment in TB1 comprises a portfolio of different tasks). This is the second year of our new curriculum, and we’ve got lots of exciting ideas and events planned for you. We worked very hard (since about this time last year!) to prepare for this new level – please let us know what you think (we think it’s going to be amazing, but if you spot something that could be improved, please let us know!).

So, like for the level 3s: some points I want to highlight (some are the same):

– APT (= Academic Personal Tutors): you will continue to each have a personal tutor, who will act as your point of call. Most personal tutors will probably already have sent you an email – if not you’ll hear from them soon. If you are unsure of who your personal tutor is, please get in touch (with Jeanette) to check. As before, you are encouraged to indicate on MyUWE who your personal tutor is (there is a link on there – let me know if you have trouble finding it). Try to meet up with your personal tutor a few times each term – as this year really starts to matter! The marks this year start to count towards your degree classification. Your APT can help you with making the most of different types of assessment, and together you can devise a strategy to do well overall. Of course, we’re there for any other issues that may arise (writing references, preparation for careers, etc.).

– Careers office: you will hear from them in TB1 already, and they’ll encourage you to check out the careers office, down near the entrance to the library/Core 24. They have specific CV checking services, which are highly recommended. Also, they can help you get a job, graduate internship or similar. It’s worth signing up to Info Hub and checking out the services that careers have on offer.

– Engage and ‘drop in sessions’ are appearing on your timetables. Yet, these are not weekly events. Rather, the timetable slots are deliberately kept free so that we can arrange events such as APT meetings, meeting employers, special events and the like. Do no worry about this, until you receive an email about specific events planned during this slot.

– The blog: please follow the blog, so that any news will be announced straight to your inbox. Just click the + sign at the bottom right of the screen. If you have anything interesting to share (a summer job in which you needed your linguistic knowledge, a news story you think others may be interested in, etc.), just write an entry for the blog and send it to Jeanette or Craig, so that we can upload it!

– Changing seminar groups: if you want to change seminar groups (there is limited availability), you can still do so for the first two weeks of TB1. (I think the deadline is noon on the Friday of week 2 of TB1). You have to follow the link on MyUWE (to CETTS, central timetabling). After the two weeks, and in case your preferred group is already full, you can only change groups if it’s agreed with the lecturer. We usually only do it in very specific cases (e.g. issues with childcare at that time or an unreasonable commute)

– Feedback: We are very keen to hear your feedback, and there are a lot of ways to do so: Student reps (each module will elect one, and you can see who it is and get their contact details on Blackboard – there’s a special folder for student reps in the left-hand menu). You can also contact me (Jeanette) as the Programme Manager, or your APT tutor. You can chat to any member of staff.

– How we have acted on your feedback: Whenever we get feedback from you, we take it very seriously and find ways to make amends where possible. Timetables is a typical ‘problem’. Again, this year, we worked from the very beginning to get reasonable timetables. They weren’t bad, actually, but a few issues (e.g. Analysing culture lecture and workshop 9-10 and 5-6, when the workshop was going to be a very practical event). We have worked with timetabling to develop new ways of teaching this – the lecturers in question will let you know. While there may be the odd 5-6 workshop, you will get other materials to work with, and we will make stronger use of PAL

– PAL: you are very much encouraged to attend PAL sessions. This year we have got five new PAL leaders: Sandee Sond, Lizzy Wood, Styliana Economou, Victoria Mercer and Zoe Egan. Apart from helping with issues that have come up in modules, they can give you perspectives on the level 3 modules they are studying at the moment – and so much more!

– Getting involved: there are lots of ways to get involved (if you aren’t already), such as LingSoc, coming to BCL (Bristol Centre for Linguistics) seminars (which will be advertised here on the blog), chatting to your lecturers (greatly encouraged) and APT tutors, coming to events and event running events! If you have any ideas for Programme events, just run them past me (Jeanette), or get LingSoc involved!

– Videos: we’ve been recording a number of videos, and will be doing some more during the term. These are to help you with issues we know are complicated (e.g. complex clauses). If you find any specific issues you struggle with, let us know and we can make a video on just those issues!

Looking forward to seeing you all again! I’ll be teaching the English Language and Linguistics students for just one lecture (Language Acquisition) during TB1, and then again full time in TB2 (Language and the Mind). I’m here for all students, though – and if you are studying English and English Language and want to have a chat, why not pop in to 3E2 (my well-hidden office!). 🙂



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