Fatima Isabel de Almeida Reszczynski
Originally from Lisbon, Portugal, I migrated to the UK in 2003 and have been living in Leeds ever since.
Before I came I had been studying towards a degree in General and Romanic Linguistics at the University of Lisbon but “life got tough”, so I withdrew and worked full-time for a few years.
In 2004 I was offered the opportunity to go back into higher education and studied joint honours English and Linguistics at the University of Leeds. I graduated in 2008 and although I went on to study other courses at other institutions I decided to return to the University of Leeds to gain a Masters qualification in language teaching.
Why I chose Leeds
From my previous experience at the University I knew that only Leeds could offer me the individualised and differentiated support that I needed to complete such a cognitively demanding and yet exceptionally straightforward degree.
I can now firmly say that I have made the right choice by choosing Leeds and the School of Education. The MA TESOL Studies course ran pretty smoothly and the academic team was super supportive, very organised and really, really good overall.
My passion for teaching
I have always been passionate about languages and when I was introduced to English at the age of ten, I fell in love with it immediately.
As the years went by, the more I learned about the subject, the more fascinated I became. Likewise, I developed a passion for teaching very early in my life.
I believe that teachers have one of the most dynamic and interesting careers, inspiring, encouraging and moulding tomorrow’s generation and by competing the MA TESOL Studies course at the University of Leeds I have gained the skills and knowledge to pursue the English Language Teaching path.
My experience on the course
I thought the course was very well structured and the guidance and support we had from the academic staff along the way made all the coursework manageable. I enjoyed every aspect of the course.
I particularly liked the ‘Investigating Language for TESOL’ module which made me draw on my linguistic background to describe and analyse the English language. I was also very keen on the idea that the final piece of work demanded by the course is a portfolio of learning in which I can display the knowledge and skills I have gained while completing the course.
The MA TESOL Studies is a great course provided by well established teachers and researchers at one of the best Universities in the UK. For anyone thinking about applying, I’d say…go for it!
The learning environment
The learning facilities in the School and at the University in general are very good. I have been able to use the facilities for both personal reasons and research needs whenever I needed to.
Even while studying at other institutions I always preferred to use the University’s libraries for research and private study and in the future I will continue to make use of the learning facilities provided by the University.
Student support in the School is excellent. I remember being very apprehensive on the induction day. However, by the end of the day there was a great sense of solidarity between staff and students and that feeling of support, friendship and unity carried on during the academic year and still remains today.
Outside of study
There are several activities available for students to take part in outside of their studies. Many students from the School engage in clubs and societies. The School itself provides opportunities for students to do other activities outside of studies, by for example, organising trips and parties.
As a mature student, a mother and a part-time language teacher I have very little spare time for anything other than studying at the moment. However, whenever I can, I enjoy reading a good book. Lately I have been leisurely re-reading the novels in my BA reading list, re-encountering some of the greatest characters in the world of literature, such as Oliver Twist, Jane Eyre and so on.
Although I love Lisbon, I have never felt more at home as when in Leeds. Leeds is a beautiful, safe and inviting city. It is multicultural, vibrant and dynamic and I love it!
I have been self-employed for a few months now and have already secured a teaching position at a private adult education centre teaching ESOL with Citizenship.
The plan is to carry on supporting learners for whom English is a second or foreign language and helping them gain the skills they need for further education and employment in the UK. In the future I would like to open and manage my own private adult learning institution.