Improve your Writing Skillsadmin2019-04-04T22:02:57+00:00
EASY WAY TO IMPROVE YOUR WRITING SKILLS
Check your answers below.
1. Easy Question:
A resume (CV) in one country looks different than in another country.
a) True b) False
2. Easy Question:
Which one of these communication is more modern?
a) business letter b) email
3. More Difficult:
Which of theses are workplace communication documents?
a) email b) memo c) notice d) agenda e) report f) all of the above
4. More Difficult:
You can find samples of a letter to your child’s school teacher online.
a) True b) False
When writing in Canada, you have to follow Canadian/North American format and etiquette for
a) letters b) emails c) both a and b
If you translate a written message (e.g. an email) that is polite in one country into English, it will be considered polite in Canada.
a) Always b) Sometimes c) Never
Check your answers below.
Easy Way to Improve your Writing Skills in Canada
Be careful not to translate from your first language – emails and other documents have different format/structure, and may follow different etiquette rules which results in the use of different vocabulary. Remember: how we write is heavily influenced by the culture of the country. Try, if possible, to find Canadian/North American examples when looking for samples. If you want to improve your writing skills, the first question you need to ask yourself is: “WHAT do I need to write in my life in Canada?”
Here are some things that you might need to write:
workplace notices, memos, agendas
letters to your child’s school teacher
resume and cover letter
Writing Emails and Business Letters
Before, people used to write more business letters. Nowadays, most people write emails and shorter messages that are similar to emails (for example on LinkedIn). Very few jobs require you to know how to write a business letter so don’t waste your time learning it. If you ever have to write one, it’s best to find some examples and copy, substituting some information. Emails, however, is a form of everyday communication and you will need to know how to write Canadian style emails. To learn the basics of email structure and etiquette in Canada, click HERE.
Writing an Essay
If you are going to college or university in Canada, you need to learn how to write an essay. There are many books that you can get, for example from the library, that will teach you how to write an essay in English. The key is reading a lot of examples. The most important thing to understand is that English essays follow a set structure. Become the master of the structure and you will be able to write a perfect essay every time. For more specific tips on essay writing, click HERE.
Writing a Resume and a Cover Letter
If you need a resume and a cover letter, it’s a good idea to seek help from numerous organizations that have special people (Job Developers or Counselors) who can help you – for free! – to create a professionally looking resume. It’s a good idea to find some Canadian resume samples but be careful to look for something current (in Google type 2018). Notice the amount of white space, the absence of the picture or any other personal, non-work related information, and other things that make a Canadian resume different from the style followed in your first country.
Writing a Letter to your Child’s School Teacher
Letters and emails have structure. You need to include the date, the child’s full name, and the reason you’re writing (if it’s an email, the date will be added automatically). Start your letter with a greeting “Dear Mr./Mrs. Johnson,” and finish it with a closing of appropriate level of formality “Sincerely,/Regards,/Thank you,” and signing your name. There are two things to keep in mind when you’re writing a letter in Canada: the purpose of it should be very clear from the first paragraph, and it needs to be polite by Canadian standards. It’s better to find samples of letters online and copy them substituting your own information.
Writing Workplace Notices, Memos, Agendas and Reports
You need to get samples of these to understand the format/structure used at your Canadian workplace. If you find yourself in a situation where your manager tells you to write a report and doesn’t explain how, do your best (search online, ask co-workers) and then present it to your manager for corrections and suggestions for improvement.
The golden rule to writing anything is to first read a lot of examples. As you’re reading an article in a Canadian magazine, notice the structure. It should be clear and easy to read. Follow the format – how thoughts are organized – and you can easily write an article people will enjoy reading.
Think of a book as a really big article. Again, the same rule applies: you need to determine the structure of your creation and then follow it.
Writing Greeting Cards
You don’t have to write anything in a greeting card that already has text – adding your name and date is sufficient. However, if you do want to wish a person something, English follows certain formulas: “Hope you…”, “Wishing you…”, “May this… bring…”, etc. You can discover these and more by reading the greeting cards with printed text.
How to Proofread
To show that you respect the reader, you need to proofread your emails and other written work. The good news is that proofreading is a skill that can be learned and improved. With time, proofreading becomes a habit and you won’t even think twice about it. If you want to become good at it, start by clicking HERE.