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  1. #1
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    Default [Proofread please] Letters to universities

    It's not like this is the first time sending letters to universities / colleges. However, I never had to worry about the forms before because I usually dealt with professors in fine art / animation department, and they didn't mind crude English as long as they could make sense out of it.

    Now that I'm switching path and decided to get into linguistic , I'd have to pay extra attention to every word / format / punctuation / grammar, if I don't want to make a fool of myself.

    And just so that you know, OAC is grade 13, exclusive in Canada, and now obsolete.

    Here it goes:

    Dear (Mr / Ms. whoever, since their names are usually shown on their universities' websites)

    I would like to inquire a few things about your linguistic program. My name is HKB, turning 22 this year, plans to major linguistic and possibly teach English overseas upon graduation. I am somewhat at a loss right now because I recently made the switch from fine art stream. And for that reason I've never done OAC English in high school. I did my grade 12 English but that was before OAC disappeared and the curriculum changed. I did graduate from a one-year post-secondary art program, which included a college-level English course, but the grade wasn't very impressive because, even back then my priority was improving my drawing skills and English wasn't much of my interest.

    English isn't my first language, and it only recently came into realization that good language skill is more than essential. And I thought your linguistic program would be a good place to start. And here's where my questions come in.

    - Do you still require OAC or grade 12U English credit, or will I get by with my college English credit?
    - Will TOEFL score be considered? I have a fair score of 283.
    - I posess a decent level of English for an ESL student, but I'd like to further polish my English. I suppose many of your regular linguistic courses will help, but does the university offer any extra ESL / English courses?
    - Is there anything you'll consider in place of high school English credits? maybe a nationally-certified English exam of some sort?
    - How much is the tuition? (I'm a Canadian citizen)
    - Do linguistic departments in different univerisities specialize in different languages? Korean is my first language, and I'm currently studying Japanses on my own. I may decide to become an interpreter in those languages (from / to English, of course). Would certain universites focus on certain langauges?

    If OAC / grade 12U English is a must, I plan to take those courses at an adult school and apply next year. I'm in a predicament where, others in my age are graduating from their post-secondary institutions and I haven't even gotten into one yet, all because of my recent switch of path from fine art stream. If you'd be kind enough to spare a few minuites and provide suggestions / feedbacks I would be very grateful.

    Yours truly,

    HKB
    On top of correcting grammar / punctuation / word usage, if you think I could've used better form / format, could you give me some examples? much appreciated!!
    Last edited by HaraKiriBlade; 10-Jun-2005 at 05:43.

  2. #2
    HaraKiriBlade's Avatar
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    Default Re: [Proofread please] Letters to universities

    No answer... hmm...

    Maybe this isn't the kind of question I should post here? I've had rare occasions where my questions went unanswered.
    It's not like I'm asking you to do my homework. I can just send this letter as is, it's not like my sentences are incomprehensible.

    Trust me, whatever I post here is solely for my own English study. I don't go to school yet so I have no schoolwork.

    It's just that I want to get my English polished as fast as I can, and I feel very anxious about it. It's just hard on me to have questions lingering on my mind unanswered.

    Maybe I'm doing something wrong and not realizing it. Or the question's too long, too many and you're plain busy. Please let me know.

  3. #3
    Tdol is online now Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: [Proofread please] Letters to universities

    Time differences, etc, plus the volume of traffic can delay answers. If something doesn't get answered, just bump it back to the top of the list.

    My first comment is the first paragraph- I would change the tone. I wouldn't say things like 'I am at a loss'.

    I would like to inquire about your Linguistics program.

    (That's all I'd put in the first paragraph)

    Secondly, I think you're asking too many questions in the letter. It's a bit of overkill. I'd just ask what the requirements are for entrance in terms of grades, maybe mentioning yoyr TOEFL score and college English. Don't go on about being more interested in drawing- it's not selling yourself. Mention that you are a Korean speaker and are learning Japanese, and ask about interpretation. The best letters are short and to the point. Do details like your age matter? If not, cut it. I'd say that anything that can be cut should be cut. Get the basic details and then start going into the finer details. A very long letter may well not get read and some of the points may simply be missing in the reply.
    Last edited by Tdol; 14-Jun-2005 at 07:05.

  4. #4
    HaraKiriBlade's Avatar
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    Default Re: [Proofread please] Letters to universities

    As always, thank you Tdol.

    Oh and, how do I bump my question back to the top of the list, other than having to write a reply myself?

  5. #5
    Tdol is online now Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: [Proofread please] Letters to universities

    Just put a post in with the word 'bump'.

  6. #6
    Tdol is online now Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: [Proofread please] Letters to universities

    <bump>

  7. #7
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    Default Re: [Proofread please] Letters to universities

    If you need your written English proofread please check out:

    www.proofreadinginternational.com

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