Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

School of Education

Zhijie Wang

MA TESOL Studies | 2016 - 2017

Photo of Zhijie Wang

Please tell us a bit about yourself, where you are from, your background etc?

My name is WangZhijie, Wang is from my father’s surname, Zhi is from my mother’s surname, Jie means combination to both of my father’s surname and my mother’s surname. I have been brought up in Shanghai, where I graduated with a BA Business and Translation English. I also did an exchange at Newcastle-upon-Tyne when I was in university. That is the first time I lived away from home, but it was a really memorable experience.

What made you want to apply to your course and to Leeds?

My parents influenced my decision to study my course as my father wants me to be an English teacher in the future. Schools in Shanghai requires teachers to have a degree of undergraduate and above so I wanted to upgrade my degree to help when looking for jobs. It was quite an impulse for me to follow my parents’ idea and my university teachers’ suggestion.

What is it that makes you passionate about your area of study?

My aspiration and motivation has really grown as I’ve absorbed knowledge from reading and tried to express myself as clearly as possible in the vibrant discussions we have in teaching sessions. I now want to incorporate the knowledge and some of the excellent teaching styles from my tutors into my future language teaching. The UK context to knowledge and teaching have allowed me to become more critical, so I can be the conductor of my own orchestra, by being reflective and evaluative about what I learn and think to implement in the Shanghai context.

What do you think of your course so far – what aspects of the course have you enjoyed the most or are looking forward to the most?

I enjoy many of the passionate discussions in classes and teaching activities. As a zero teaching experience graduate, micro-teaching brings out my nerves, as well as my passion when I prepare for it with my course mates. I’ve learnt and approved a lot since the first micro-teaching where I was quite nervous. Together we have learnt, chatted and used role-play, and supported each other by giving feedback during the preparation. The second time, we all did better and got positive feedback. I’ve also learnt to be the captain of my own ship, which is different from the university I attended in Shanghai.  I’ve learnt to complete pre-reading and decide how to write an assignment. To be honest, this change has been challenging but has given me a chance to cultivate my ability to be consistent.

What would you say about the learning facilities in the School and at the University in general?

Most of the time, I choose to self-study in accommodation which is only 10 minutes walking distance from campus. I've also studied in the libraries with course mates for assignments and micro-teaching. During preparation of micro-teaching I found the bookable study rooms in the library to be quite convenient for us to discuss (however, we did also chat a lot!)

How do you find the student support?

I found the student support staff in the Ziff Building to be knowledgeable and they’ve helped me a lot. 

What other activities are available for students to take part in outside of their studies, and which ones have you tried out yourself? (e.g. Clubs & Societies/activities in the School).

I sometimes go to Global Café to have a chat with students from other countries, most of the people I’ve met are from Japan, and so we will have a lot to talk about. That is a good place to improve my oral English.

What do you think about Leeds as a city?

It is not that big compared to other cities in China like Beijing, Shanghai or Guangzhou but it provides students what they need.

What would you say to anyone thinking of applying to your course?

Consider why you want to come to Leeds and study in MA TESOL and related majors.

What do you plan to do once you’ve finished your course? What are you career aspirations?

I will definitely go back to Shanghai because I miss my family, my girlfriend and my friends. Then, I will choose to teach in public high school or maybe I will go to a private institution to enhance my practical teaching experience there.

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