If you need help, advice or assistance with non-academic issues while studying at AIS, please contact a member of the Student Services Marketing team.
Student Support Services
The person with overall responsibility for the pastoral care of AIS Students is Allen Hsieh, Director. If you need help, advice or assistance with non-academic issues while studying at AIS, please contact Allen or a member of the Student Services Marketing team.
Employment Support Services
The AIS Student Careers Centre at the St Helens Campus, are available to assist students with gaining employment during studies and after graduation by advising on resume preparation, interview techniques and suitable placements for work experience. As part of the job-seeking process, our staff will assist students and graduates to contact potential employers and set up interview arrangements.
Study Skills Advisor
Tamendi Pranish, our Study Skills Advisor, provides free, high-quality learning assistance to any AIS enrolled student. This assistance may be provided to individuals or groups and is designed to help students gain maximum benefit from their programme of study. The Study Skills Advisor has a range of expertise in academic reading, writing, listening and speaking strategies. The Study Skills Advisor can also work with you to improve general study skills, time management, assignment support and preparation for exams.
Individual appointments can be made with the Study Skills Advisor for a confidential chat.
The Study Skills Advisor is available anytime for drop-in assistance and support, and no appointment is necessary. Drop-ins run on a first-come, first-seen basis.
Tamendi is located in room A114 at the St Helens Campus.
Study Skills Advisor
MA TESOL (NZ), PGDipSLT (NZ), B. Ed (Language and Literature) (Fiji), DipTchg (Fiji), Cert TEFL (Sydney), Cert TESL
Phone: (09) 815 1717 ext 841
Study Skills Workshops
The Study Skills Advisor holds workshops on specific study skills and strategies throughout the semester. These are free to attend and no appointment is necessary. Requests for group specific workshops (such as assignment/examination support) are also available by appointment.
Need some tips on how to get the best out of your studies and improve your English? Read up on some of our study tips for speaker of other languages.
Study tips for International students
The advice given below is intended for non-native English language speakers.
General advice to help you study English
- The most important thing is goal setting. You need to set short-term goals (for example, I will learn five new words every day, I will read four books this month, etc.) and also long-term goals (think about your future).
- Take the time to plan your goals and organise your study time. Try and study at the same time every day so that you get into a routine.
- Always review your lecture notes as soon after a lecture as possible. This means elaborating your notes from textbooks and rewriting any material that is not clear.
- Give yourself about 50 minutes for each study period, then take a ten-minute break, maybe do some exercise or have a drink.
- Begin your work before dinner, when you are still fresh and the day's lectures have not yet faded from your memory.
- Tackle the most difficult work early, when you are fresh and motivated.
- Let your friends know your study timetable and tell them not to interrupt you.
- Review your plan from time to time. There could be changes in your set routines and adjustments may need to be made. If you've been too tough on yourself, you may have to relax a little. Some subjects may need more time than you thought, others less.
- If you use a train or bus, put your travelling time to good use by planning or rote learning material.
- Move into a Kiwi homestay.
- Go flatting with Kiwis or people who don't speak your language.
- Study with a friend - you can test each other on vocabulary. Practise speaking and listening and discuss things you don't understand.
- Make Kiwi friends.
- Go to Kiwi restaurants.
- Join the AIS student groups.
- Try to think in English, not your native tongue.
These reading tips will improve your English skills
- Go to the library every day after class and read.
- Read every day for half an hour.
- Surf the internet.
- Read the newspaper. Local newspapers are better than the big daily ones because the language is simpler. Sometimes it's good to read the whole article, but other times just read the headline and the first few paragraphs. Don't use your dictionary every time you find a new word - try and guess all the words you can, and then use the dictionary only for the really important words that you need in order to understand the main idea.
Some ideas to help increase your vocabulary
- Revise new words and recycle your vocabulary every day for half an hour.
- Build your vocabulary by reading books, newspapers and magazines, rather than just using your dictionary.
- Do crossword puzzles in your spare time.
- In your vocabulary book, don't translate English words into your language - write BOTH the words and the MEANINGS in simple English that you can understand. It may be helpful to group words into subjects (for example, car words - brake, traffic lights, give-way, hubcap, etc).
Speaking English and listening to English will help you improve
Use every opportunity you can to speak to people in English (for example, in shops, in bars or during other outings).
- Phone someone from your class each day and speak to them in English.
- Listen to the radio. Talkback radio is particularly useful because the people who ring up are ordinary New Zealanders. They repeat themselves a lot and they use common idioms. Also try taping the news on the radio and listen to it several times. The more times you listen, the more you'll hear and understand.
- Watch some television every day. If you've only been learning English for a short time, children's programmes, like Sesame Street which are on in the early mornings and early afternoons, are good. They repeat words a lot and have lots of pictures. If you've been learning English for longer, watch 'soaps' like Shortland Street. You can learn lots of New Zealand idioms from this programme. If there's an idiom you don't understand, write it down and ask your teacher or a friend. It's also good to watch the television news. It can be very difficult to understand, but if you have a DVD recorder, it's good to record it and watch it as many times as you need to. Teletext subtitles (if you have them) will help you learn the words that are used.
- Watch videos and go to the cinema.
- Go to a bible study group or to church (even if you don't believe in God, it's a great way to practise your English).
- Start a regular discussion or study group with other classmates.
- Listen to English songs. Listen again and again and try and write down all the words you hear.
- Visit classmates after school or at the weekend.
- Come to school early so you can talk with other students.
- Read a short paragraph out loud every day to practise your pronunciation.
- Get a part-time job in a New Zealand restaurant (check that your student visa allows for this first).
Tips to improve your written English
- Exchange email addresses with your classmates and email them regularly in English.
- Write a diary in English every day.
- Find a native English speaking pen pal to write to.