ITA Practice Opportunities

To improve their English oral communication skills, international TAs are advised to engage in various activities, including interacting with native English speakers and practicing their English with computer-assisted language learning software.

As teaching implies staying in touch with professional educators and working on self-improvement as an instructor, international graduate students are encouraged to attend ITA Orientations and consult other teaching resources at ISU. 

Click the links below to find more detailed information on ITAs' pratice opportunities in oral English.

ITA Orientation

We annually have a 2-hour orientation session at the beginning of the Fall semester to help new ITAs understand the American university classroom culture and learn effective communication strategies as a teaching assistant.  Detailed topics included in the orientation are:

  • What undergraduate classes at ISU are like,
  • Undergraduate characteristics and their expectations of their professors and TAs,
  • Strategies for effective communication in English for international graduate students, and
  • Video examples of TAs teaching recitation classes.

Pronunciation Practice

Pronunciation Lab

Location:  1114 Pearson


  • Monday-Friday, 8am-5pm (Fall/Spring Hours)
  • Monday-Friday, 8am-4pm (Summer/Winter Break Hours)

Reservation:  Reserve a time slot

Pronunciation Laptop

Location:  1137 Pearson (Show Map)

Reservation:  Reserve a check-out laptop

Note:  Due to encryption, check-out laptops should be logged into with an ISU NetID first on campus for the activation of a user account on the computer. Students may use a pronunciation laptop off-campus once they have logged into it on campus.


English pronunciation software:

Additional English learning software:

  • Idioms in English
  • Writing in English

Conversation Opportunities

Coffee, Tea & English

Coffee, Tea, and English is a weekly event where international students can have a chance to practice their English with native speakers in a casual setting. It is offered on Friday afternoons from 4:30 to 6:00 in the Lobby Cafe of the Gerdin Business Building. The event is co-sponsored by Bridges International, CRU, & International Students and Scholars Office. For more information contact G.P. Foote (Phone: 515-292-7549; 
Bridges International serves the international community of ISU and Ames. (;

Coffee, Tea, & English

English Together: Daily English Conversations

English Together is an English conversation group that brings together students, faculty, and staff from across ISU to form connections and build community while offering an opportunity for international students and scholars to improve their English.

English Together is a great way to welcome and form connections with international students and scholars. Through this connection you will learn about various cultures and perspectives and help others to improve their English. It's a fun and rewarding experience!

Beginning Monday, September 14th, English Together will meet twice dailyMonday through Friday9-10 AMand 5-6 PM in the Memorial Union Pine Room.

Sign Up to Participate (Optional)

If you have any questions, please contact:

Rebecca Severin-
Kathryn Lundgren-


VoiceTown is a multifaceted program that provides individuals with personal coaching to help them improve their English language skills. The lessons are tailored to address individual language difficulties, also focusing on career or discipline specific vocabulary. For more information, contact Dr. Nina Rasmusson at