SPEAC Program Course Description

During this four week program, all students will take four 2-week courses--three on oral communication and one on U.S. academic culture. These courses are designed to be highly interactive, introduce key strategies, and connect students with resources they can use after the program ends.

Improving Pronunciation

Pronunciation includes individual sounds as well as pausing, intonation and stress. By the end of this course, you will increase your awareness of and control over the aspects of spoken English that most affect intelligibility, gain confidence that you’ll be understood by listeners, and have strategies for handling cases of miscommunication.Students working on a collaborative project during their SPEAC course

U.S. Academic Culture

How does academic culture in the United States differ from that in other countries? What are typical student-faculty interactions, peer-peer interactions, and classroom dynamics? What resources are available on typical U.S. campuses to support student learning and student life? This course will familiarize you with aspects of U.S. academic culture and available resources at Cornell.  

Designing and Delivering Effective Presentations

Being comfortable presenting is an essential part of graduate studies and professional practice. This course will provide you with strategies for preparing and delivering presentations that are clear, compelling, persuasive, concise, and visually effective, as well as give you opportunities to practice delivering presentations in front of a supportive audience.

Taking Part in Discussions

Participating in discussions is essential for becoming a part of your academic or workplace community, as discussions are used to share and create knowledge and challenge ideas. By the end of this course, you will learn strategies for entering, responding to, leading, and guiding discussions, as well as asking questions. You will leave this course with more confidence to assert your voice.  

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