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“The courses are demanding, but the rewards are worth it”

Paraskevi Karastopoli works as a teacher of Swedish and English and is currently finishing the course work in English C. During spring 2022, she will be writing her bachelor’s thesis. She went back to studying English because she wanted a deeper knowledge of the language to provide a better learning experience to her students.

Paraskevi lives in a small town away from major cities, which makes travelling for studies difficult, and that is the reason she chose to apply for her first online course at LTU to start with. That is, however, not the only reason for her continued studies at LTU.

– While studying at LTU, I realised that the courses were also very high quality. That was the reason why a couple of years later I chose to continue my studies here. In fact, this was the only English C course I applied to. I didn’t even bother to check which other universities offer the course. The courses at LTU put great emphasis on theoretical approaches that you are then expected to apply and discuss. I am fascinated by the depth we can reach in our discussions.

She also notes that universities offering online courses usually have well-equipped libraries with much of the literature available for downloading and reading on your laptop. For Paraskevi, studying online has been a good alternative as it is both time- and cost-efficient. But it’s also a lonely activity, so she suggests finding a study partner or joining a study group as other students can provide a lot of valuable help and feedback.

Which aspect of English studies have interested you the most?
– That’s a tough question. I think I’ve oscillated from linguistics to literature and back again. There are aspects of language that have to do with how we assign meaning to our utterances that surprise me. I am sometimes amazed by how language works. Linguistics can be a fascinating field. There are things we have discussed in linguistics that I find myself applying to news items I read or to movies I watch.

What advice would you give to someone who was about to start their studies in English at LTU?
– The courses are demanding, but the rewards are worth it. Start early and get a good overview of what is expected and what are your deadlines. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Everyone is here to help you and they want to see you succeed.