Identifying Challenges in Writing Across Borders Workshop Series

"2 people walking in Chernoff Hall"With the continuous internationalization of the student population on campus, Queen’s University is becoming increasingly diverse. However, many international students, especially the ones who speak English as an additional language, are facing unique challenges in academic writing. While English language proficiency is often deemed as the primary reason for their challenges, there are, in fact, cultural factors involved in the students’ writing practices.

This workshop series is designed to help educators explore cultural influence in academic writing, critical thinking, and academic integrity which are topics international students identified as the most challenging in their studies. Within each session, participants will reflect on critical questions with regard to respective topic, identify teaching strategies to help students overcome associated challenges, and attend a panel Q&A component for further questions, resources, and conversations.

Academic Writing

Facilitated by Yunyi Chen, Centre for Teaching and Learning
Panelists: Alyssa Foerstner and Lydia Skulstad, Student Academic Success Services (SASS); and Molalign Adugna (PhD Candidate) School of Rehabilitation Therapy

Wednesday, September 22, 2021; 10:30am – 12:00pm

Bringing widely different cultural, educational, and linguistic backgrounds into Queen’s University, international students across disciplines are encountered with conundrums in academic writing. Contrary to the belief that English language proficiency plays a sole role in impacting international students’ writing activates, this workshop is intended to look into why it seems problematic for international students to write academically in English through a cultural perspective.  

Academic Writing Registration Form

Critical Thinking

Facilitated by Yunyi Chen, Centre for Teaching and Learning
Panelists: Johanna Amos and Lydia Skulstad, Student Academic Success Services (SASS); and Yiyi He (PhD Candidate) Cultural Studies
Wednesday, October 6, 2021; 2:00 – 3:30pm

Critical thinking is highly valued at Queen’s University. In many disciplines, it is considered the basics for academic writing. Coming from diverse cultural, educational, and linguistic backgrounds, international students often experience obstacles practicing critical thinking in written assignments, thus are regarded as unable to think critically. Contrary to this stereotype, this workshop explores why international students tend to project seemingly weaker critical thinking in English academic writing through a cultural perspective.

Critical Thinking Registration Form

Academic Integrity

Facilitated by Yunyi Chen, Centre for Teaching and Learning
Panelists: Ian Garner, Student Academic Success Services (SASS); Matt Rahimian, Office of the Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic); Student Panelist: TBA
Thursday, October 21, 2021; 10:30am – 12:00pm

While Queen’s University is becoming more culturally diverse, this trend has given rise to concerns about academic integrity as students from diverse cultural, educational, and linguistic backgrounds seem to be at high risk of committing plagiarism. Contrary to the portrait that depicts international students as persistent plagiarizers, this workshop intends to delve into why plagiarism seems to pose a problem for international students in English academic writing through a cultural perspective.

Academic Integrity Registration Form