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Intercultural Communication Center Academic Culture and Communication
Intercultural Communication Center Academic Culture and Communication
Developing Linguistic and Cultural Readiness for CMU Graduate Programs
An intensive five-week summer program designed for nonnative English speakers entering Carnegie Mellon University graduate programs each fall.
Summer Program
Program Overview
Admission and Registration
Class Descriptions
Program Costs and Housing
Attendance and Certification
Outside Activities
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Warner Hall 308
5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh PA 15213-3890
Office: (412) 268-4979

  Class Descriptions:

 Academic Speaking

(approximately 7.5 hours/week)

Carnegie Mellon students are expected to take on tasks that require robust academic fluency. These tasks include expressing ideas orally in the classroom, collaborating with other students, and giving formal presentations. This class is designed to strengthen speaking and listening skills for the Carnegie Mellon classroom. The culture of the US classroom will also be examined to help students understand the behavior and language expected of them. Students will develop academic fluency in their fields as well as in less formal contexts.

Areas to be emphasized are:

  • making formal presentations
  • presenting ideas in class and in small groups
  • understanding lectures
  • asking and answering questions
  • participating in class discussions and in group projects

Academic Writing

(approximately 7.5 hours/week)

A student's ability to read and write well relies not only on linguistic skills but also on the ability to recognize and use the conventions of written academic English. This class is designed to help students develop the writing skills needed for academic work at Carnegie Mellon.

General areas to be emphasized are:

  • learning the expectations of the US style of writing
  • recognizing and using organizational patterns appropriate to academic writing
  • using transitions to make clear connections between ideas
  • practicing strategies for academic reading
  • understanding how general writing principles are applied in specific fields
  • citing sources and avoiding plagiarism

At the end of this course, students are required to compile a portfolio of their written work to the instructor. The portfolio will be used as part of the final evaluation of the course. Students will gain a clear understanding of their own strengths and weaknesses in reading and writing and develop a plan for improvement.

Language and Culture Practicum

(3 hours/week for 3 weeks)

The practicum sessions are designed to help students develop a practical understanding of US culture and to provide an opportunity to use their language skills in authentic classroom situations. We will also address issues of practical concern to students adapting to graduate student life at Carnegie Mellon.