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K-State Today

April 19, 2018

Conversation Days with international students

Submitted by Stacey Lhuillier

In an effort to expand knowledge of diversity and volunteer efforts, College of Business Administration students in the Business Foundations class have volunteered to assist English Language Program students with developing skills in conversational English and better prepare them for the traditional classroom.

The English Language Program indicated that conversational English can differ greatly from English taught in the classroom. Business students participate in a "round robin" grouping to discuss a variety of topics to allow these students to learn better approaches to both listening and speaking English. In addition to improving their English skills, English Language Program students also benefit from learning many of the English slang terms that may be difficult to master. 

The benefit for the business students is to understand the challenges of English Language Program students and gain great exposure to a diverse world. Every business student has expressed how insightful this activity has been in teaching the differences in the cultures, the similarities these students have to domestic students and the opportunity to befriend someone from other nations.

Many of English Language Program students are eager to be a part of the K-State family and make the connections to other students. Yet, language barriers and cultural differences can often make initiating these connections difficult. Many Conversation Days activities have created a perfect opportunity to help initiate this process and narrowing the gap between our international and domestic students as part of the family environment we create.

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