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“ My name is Manal Abdul Latif.

I'm Palestinian but was born and lived in Syria.
I have a passion for languages so I studied English Language & Literature. I graduated in 2012 and was doing my MA in linguistic studies. I passed my first year, but couldn't go for a thesis because of the situation in Syria. Before I graduated, I used to spent most of my time studying and reading English novels, watching TV and listening to English music in order to get a good command of the language. After graduation, I got a post at Al Baath University and started to work as a graduate teaching assistant at the Faculty of arts and humanities/ department of English. I taught different subjects such as phonetics& phonology, linguistics, composition and American literature. While doing my MA, the study conditions were really terrible. We didn't have enough resources in order to write our research paper and we used to depend heavily on electronic versions, most of which were not available. In addition to that, we suffered from long power outages and I sometimes had to study in the candle light to finish my assignments. Besides, there was a lot of shelling and shooting around us and sometimes I couldn't attend the lectures because of that. That's why I guess Dutch students have better study conditions and better teaching methodologies with regard to all the technologies they have access to. In the future I think I’m going to continue my studies and perhaps go for a PhD. I'm also dreaming about mastering the Dutch language so as to become a successful translator of Arabic, English and Dutch. ”