TESOL has been hit by the recent cuts at the University of South Wales, and I won’t see it cut.
TESOL has been an important part of my education at University, and possibly one of the only reasons why I’ve stayed. I’ve thought about dropping out, because of other things getting in the way, but the exciting lessons and the chance to always learn something new in TESOL has helped me understand that I want to become a teacher.
More so, I want to become a language teacher.
TESOL has helped me do this by showing me what grammar actually is, and not just understanding how to use the language correctly, but to label it, to identify language chunks, and so much more.
For example, it has taught me how to identify the difference between the tenses, past simple, continuous, perfect, and perfect continuous, or present simple, continuous, perfect, and perfect continuous, or, future simple (will, and going to), continuous, perfect, and perfect continuous.
It has helped me understand the difference between nouns, noun phrases, countable, and uncountable nouns, gerunds, pronouns and where and when to use them.
It has helped me understand adverbs, adjectives, how and where to use them, the comparative and superlative forms. It has helped me understand how to write in reported speech and the rules behind it. It has helped me understand conjunctions, articles, and so much more.
It has helped me understand how to use the phonemic chart, the differences between hard consonant sounds, and soft consonant sounds and to think of the synonyms of every word I use.
It has helped me understand how assimilation works, and that the way we communicate language isn’t necessarily right or wrong, but rather multiple choice. The fact that language is something fluid, and forever changing, as opposed to something that is outdated and not needing to be refreshed, or modified.
It has helped me identify problems with non-native speakers, in the sense of typically common problems that different language users will find difficulties with.
TESOL has helped me understand how to work with mixed skills groups, and multi-cultural groups, and to identify the importance of building confidence in a classroom, over repetitive study. Fluency being key in this.
I think that it is important to note that TESOL will contribute toward making me a more confident person, and a more understanding person. It helps me understand the use of intonation in speech, the variations in dialects, and to teach a simple way of explaining rules/uses of language to friends and non-native speakers.
Whether that’s down to the subject, or down to my teachers, Rhian and Mike, is difficult to discern but both my tutors and TESOL as a subject have been invaluable to me.