Language Education

After beginning my English teaching career as an English Teaching Assistant with the Fulbright Program in Znojmo, Czech Republic, I have continued to teach in various contexts in New York City with CentroNYC, through Edusim’s ChatClass, and in the Czech Republic. My interest quickly grew in the areas of curriculum development, and EFL writing and the challenges it presents for international students. Some of my recommendations for EFL writing can be found on the blog of my previous company, ESL Write Away.

As a result, in 2017-2018, I completed the MSc. Applied Linguistics and Second Language Acquisition course at the University of Oxford, where my research focused on the challenges facing EFL students when writing personal statements for international education purposes in the US and UK. My full thesis, “Where to turn?: A case study of Czech student and local advisor experiences of writing personal statements for undergraduate Anglophone admissions,” can be accessed online on the Oxford Research Archive.

Most recently, I continue to work in the areas of English language teaching and EFL writing through the following positions:

Other Publications: Language Education

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World Education Services Webinar: The Secret to Writing a Great Personal Statement in English

Recorded November 2019

In this webinar, we discuss how to craft a strong personal statement that will impress admissions officers and scholarship review committees. This webinar is intended for international students applying to colleges and universities in North America, or anyone simply looking to improve their writing skills in English.

 

World Education Services: How to Write Personal Essays for U.S. Universities

March 2019

Every admissions officer really wants to hear your unique voice, story, and vision. So, while there is no wrong way to approach an essay topic (which might also be referred to as a “prompt,” or come in the form of a question), there are ways to make the writing process more manageable—and the end result more powerful.

Here are some essential tips that will help you prepare an excellent personal essays for colleges and universities in the United States.


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On Child, Language, Literature Studies: Understanding the problem of the anglophone personal statement in an EFL context: a case study of Czech student and local advisors’ experiences

The personal statement is a written genre that spans the gap between English as a foreign language (EFL) and English for academic purposes instruction as international applicants to American and British universities must express their backgrounds, qualifications, motivations for international study. This case study is extracted from a  larger Master’s dissertation and focuses on a  Czech student’s and local advisors’ experiences of writing and advising on personal statement writing. Through the lens of pragmatism, challenges that emerged between the participants’ experiences of the features of the genre and Czech students’ socio-educational backgrounds are evaluated as sources of this genre as problematic. The results are discussed with implications for EFL students and teachers in the Czech Republic, Anglophone EFL curriculum developers and universities, and pedagogical research.

 


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Compare Book Reviews: Teaching of national languages in the V4 countries

February 2019

As the years 2018 and 2019 mark two important anniversaries in the shared histories of the Visegrad 4 (V4) nations of the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland, and Slovakia, the varied shockwaves of these milestones are profound within their education systems. Both language and education are gateways to understanding a host of other sociocultural factors from self-representations of identity to cultural values (Bruner, 1996; Holliday, 2010). An examination of the V4 countries demonstrates the construction and maintenance of cultural narratives through national language education; however, the differences between the curricular approaches in each provide much to consider for comparison. Teaching of National Languages in the V4 Countries, edited by Marek Pieniążek and Stanislav Štěpáník, is a crucial preliminary monograph to inform the educational research community of how the long-standing, yet diverse effects of history on the national language and literature education programs in each country show consistency within the region as a whole.


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The Write Life: 5 Easy Ways to Fight Writer’s Block in Your Second Language

June 2016

Writer’s block afflicts all great writers.Suddenly the words just won’t come out and you’re stuck sitting in front of your notebook or computer screen full of frustration. There are plenty of great articles out there with general tips about how to beat writer’s block. Now think about writing not just in your first language, but your second (third or fourth).


European Association for International EducationEuropean Association for International Education: The ‘write’ to learn from each other: higher education in the Czech Republic

September 2014

Opportunities to study abroad are increasingly popular and possible and students choose these experiences with an eagerness for challenges and adventures. Yet when embarking into the world of international education, students may face clashes between cultures, languages, and learning styles. I learned this as an American-study-abroad-student in Prague, and again when I returned to the Czech Republic as an English Teaching Assistant (ETA) through the J.W. Fulbright U.S. Student Program.