Uni-category

My first month at University

It’s been a month now since I started English Language and Literature at University and so this will be my first post about how it’s been for me, what I like (and dislike) the most so far and my favourite moment during class.
Ready…
Set…GO!!

The start of my new adventure
Even though being a student is nothing really new for me, I still feel like I started this whole new adventure a month ago. Although I went through the whole first-year-thing once before, I felt nervous when I went and met my new tutors and classmates. But ,even though I was nervous as hell and wanted to run straight back home the minute I set foot in that building, I’ve had a great time so far. My new tutors are all amazing people (though some are a little strange) and my classes are awesome!
In short: My year is divided into 4 blocks but 2 semesters, after 7 weeks I can expect 2 or more midterms. Now, in my first semester, I’m introduced to Middle English, Literature, Phonetics and the English Language. Okay, I mean let’s face it; I’m still Dutch and my accent still sucks :’) So in this case the English language means Language Acquisition (or in this case: accent building/losing my Dutch accent).

My courses/classes
Middle English/Philology
In this course I’ll learn more about medieval society and the Language back then.
A month ago I started reading Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales and though it was hard at first, I now start to enjoy his writing. Yes, it’s a little difficult because it’s not really like Modern Day English but it’s fun. By reading Chaucer’s work you’ll get an inside look in the medieval society of England in the 14th century, that is if you know where to look.
To be honest I think Chaucer had a great sense of humour!
Yes, the man has been dead for quite some time now and I can’t go back and ask him questions about what he exactly meant with a certain phrase, but when I look at the details (plus pay attending to the extra reading and what the tutors talk about during a lecture) there’s a whole other layer underneath the simple tale of a group of people going on a pilgrimage.
So, as you may have guessed, this is my favourite course of the first semester 🙂

Linguistics/Phonetics
Ever tried to read something written in phonemic transcription? No? Well I can’t blame you. This is really tough stuff, or at least it is for me. In short:
– there are a lot of different/weird symbols for normal letters from the alphabet.
– apparently you will be able to learn every language (to a certain point) when you understand all these symbols.
– It’s a pain in the ass.
There, I’ve said it. Phonetics is a pain.
Some people are simply blessed with a natural feeling for this thing and I’m not. You can probably guess that I don’t really love this course and would like to hide away until it ends but, hey, shit happens and I can deal with this. I’m a strong and independent woman, I can handle this!

Literature
There are two separate classes within this course. One being 1A and the other 1B. 1A is mostly an introduction to literary studies. So everything there’s to know about literature, basically. I don’t yet know what to think about this part of the course but I think it’s all right so far.
1B is about the classical and biblical legacies in literature and so there’s a lot of reading to do! Currently I’m reading Ovid for this class and next week I’ll start reading the King James’ revised version of the Bible.

and then there’s Language Acquisition  also known as: How to lose your Dutch accent part 1. This is basically where I sit in a chair, speak things in a microphone, listen those things back and try to improve my accent. Hurray! So nothing really special there I suppose.

Then finally, my favourite moment so far:
Being in a lecture when suddenly the fire-alarm starts screaming and that was the start of a lovely coffee break.

This was it for today folks! Thank you for your visit and see you next week with a new update!

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