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Language learning  // Browsing posts in Language learning

CRAP! How to use CRAP for designing presentation slides and other graphics. CRAP is wonderful!

CRAP is great stuff! You should use it in liberal amounts whenever you design a poster, a Power Point slide, and other visual products that can benefit from a well-done application of CRAP. CRAP! Contrast–Repetition–Alignment–Proximity: it all adds up to CRAP. If you have no idea how to use crap, read on! C–ontrast: use dark […]


Note-taking on standardized tests (TOEFL, etc.)

Many tests, such as TOEFL, allow you to take notes during the Reading and Listening sections. Remember this, test-takers: notes in these exams are for now, not later! What do I mean by “for now?” In school, you should take good notes so that you can review the material much later in the semester. Not […]


Main idea questions in standardized tests

For all of you test-takers out there–TOEFL, ITP, TOEIC & the rest–a quick tip based on my extensive experience and training as a teacher of standardized test skills: the Main Idea tends to show up early in Listening & Reading. You’ll generally see the Main Idea fairly early in Reading. It may show up anywhere […]


Short-term intensive Mandarin training in Taipei

Thoughts on short-term intensive Mandarin training in Taipei, Taiwan + MTC and Han Institute and suggestions for both short-and long-term housing–from Daniel Steve (Dan) Villarreal (Chinese name 萬丹青), Ph.D. in Foreign Language Education UT-Austin & BA in Modern Languages, The Citadel, 11A5SLA The comments about the 3 language schools are from personal experience. I’m a bit […]


Standardized tests in language usually test the 4 standard language skills

Standardized tests in language usually test the 4 standard language skills (listening, speaking, reading, and writing). You can attack the 2 productive skills (speaking, writing) the same basic way: 1.) decide your answer and brainstorm your supporting reasons and details; 2.) make an outline with your reasons and details—Introduction, Main Body, Conclusion—write transition words/phrases to […]


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