Use proper English to get a job – UL boss

Anne Sheridan

Reporter:

Anne Sheridan

IN AN era of mass communication online, the University of Limerick is calling on people to get back to basics and use better English to boosts their chances of finding a job.

IN AN era of mass communication online, the University of Limerick is calling on people to get back to basics and use better English to boosts their chances of finding a job.

With billions of tweets and text messages sent every day, the president of UL has emphasised the importance of being “able to write clearly and appropriately in a variety of different contexts.”

“In this age of texting and instant messaging, now more than ever, students seeking employment need to be able to write clearly and appropriately in a variety of different contexts.

“It is vital that students have the ability to express themselves in a professional manner,” said UL president, professor Don Barry. UL is home to the first Regional Writing Centre in the state, which supports students to gain vital research, writing and communication skills.

This year UL hosted the European Association for the Teaching of Academic Writing (EATAW) in Ireland, bringing teachers, scholars and academics interested in the development of academic writing in higher education together to raise awareness of the issue.

Over 280 delegates from around the world attended the three day conference.

Lawrence Cleary, research officer with the Regional Writing Centre, said employers have long been highlighting writing skills as a key issue with Irish graduates.

“The establishment of the first writing centre in the Irish state here at UL had made a significant impact on the skills of our graduates,” said Mr Cleary.

Lisa Breford, peer tutor, said for those just starting university, the transition into academic writing can be a real challenge. “The instructions for writing assignments are not always clear, and this formal kind of writing is not natural for most students.”