Author Archives: Helen Khan

About Helen Khan

As an experienced English language trainer, teacher, writer and editor/proofreader, I can provide services and training that will bring you into the forefront of your industry. As someone who worked in the Canadian education system for over 25 years, I bring my knowledge and expertise into assisting students make the right choices for their studying in Canada experience.

A Word in Time Saves Nine

AREC Editing ServicesGood communication is essential to business for many reasons; one of them being that it saves valuable time.

What do I mean by good communication?  There are three components to communicating your message well; correct grammar, suitable and well placed vocabulary, proper organisation and sufficient content.  If your documents and messages have this, your business will upturn.

Good Communication will:

Save time – A well delivered message means that what was intended to be said has been delivered and relayed correctly, thus reducing confusion whereby the message must be either resent or translated by someone in the organisation as to what should have been communicated.

Reduce Errors – if the document, such as a how-to manual is not correctly worded, then errors in production can occur

Increase Productivity – Whatever the document used to communicate information; if it is grammatically correct and appropriate, if well-placed vocabulary has been used, then production is up.  Your employees understand what they need to do and clients understand the high quality of the product or service you are providing.

If English is not your strong suit, then you will want to solicit the services of a good editing firm to provide you with their expertise in editing your documents and letters.  Alberta Rose Education Centre has editing services that will cover all your editing needs.

Stuck on Maths??

study mathI meet so many students who want to study abroad but don’t study Maths because they don’t like it or it is just hard to do.  So they avoid that senior Maths class.  I even meet Business streamed students who take Accounting, Economics, Business Studies but no Maths; and then they want to study abroad.

They have really undermined their chances of being accepted to a university or college in Canada or internationally.

My advice is to take that Maths class, even if you don’t get an A-star grade.  Maybe you need to settle for a B, but it can get you into the desired program.

The University of Alberta in Canada recognises that Maths is not everyone’s strongest subject, so they have provided the Decima Robinson Support Centre for Mathematical and Statistical Sciences.  They provide homework help to struggling Maths students.  The student needs to work; they provide the tools and resources for the students to find the answers.  But the right answer is the name of the game; right?  And also how you arrived at the right answer is equally important.

Up to six Teaching Assistants are available to help and students can just drop in.

Business, economics and science students will have to study Maths courses in their first year and even subsequent years, but they do not need to fear failure in Math because help is available to any student who wants to learn and get good grades.

The University of Alberta cares about its students where they provide a nurturing environment for learners.

Register Now! University of Alberta Virtual Fair

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UAlberta International Virtual Fair
Register now for the UAlberta International Virtual Fair – a free event!


The University of Alberta
is one of the world’s top 100 universities, located in Edmonton, Alberta, in Western Canada.  We offer more than 200 undergraduate and 500 graduate programs – which one is right for you?Join us online on Tuesday January 19, 2016 for the University of Alberta International Virtual Fair from 7:00am – 2:00pm MSTRegistration is free.

You will be able to chat online with UAlberta representatives and see live presentations about topics such as:

  • Life in Canada
  • Academic programs
  • How to apply
  • Housing
  • Social events and campus life
  • Immigration basics
  • Scholarships
  • and more!
Don’t miss out!  This is a great chance to explore and get an inside look at the University of Alberta!

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University of Alberta International
142 Telus Centre
Edmonton, Alberta
T5J-4P6
welcome@international.ualberta.ca

Canada’s Education Systems are Top-Notch

If you are considering studying abroad, you really must give consideration to Canada.  It has some of the best education systems in the world; that is from primary to post-secondary.

Let’s look at the statistics:

PISA

PISA is the Programme for International Student Assessment, an international survey that evaluates the education systems of 70 countries.  They test the skills and knowledge of 15 year old students in mathematics and other core subjects.  In the latest survey, 2012, Canada ranked in 9th spot, with Asian countries taking the lead.  Canada outranked Australia, the UK and the USA.

PISA Studying in CanadaTesting high school students, of course, doesn’t necessarily conclude that our post-secondary institutions are better, but it certainly could be a strong indicator that all of Canada’s education systems, from primary to tertiary are high performers.  Graduating students from a top-notch system would enter university expecting the same calibre of education and teaching that they received at the secondary level.  Graduating students from these tertiary institutions are the teaching staff in our secondary systems.  Therefore, the PISA results reflect favourably on all our systems.

The Conference Board of Canada

The Conference Board of Canada measures Canada’s education performance against 15 peer countries.  In this survey Japan and Finland outrank Canada, putting Canada in 3rd place.  This survey also places the education systems in Alberta, BC and Ontario as the top 3 in Canada.

Universitas

Another source, Universitas, looks specifically at higher education and ranks the US first, followed by Sweden and then Canada in their 2014 results.

Each of these surveys measure with different criteria; therefore, which country offers the best education system is difficult to determine conclusively.  But it can be said that Canada’s education system, from primary to tertiary is top-notch, and Canada must be seriously considered when students are considering a study abroad destination.  We also have the highest college graduation rates; which mean Canadian students will complete their studies, indicating satisfaction with their programs and the opportunities when they graduate.

The University of Alberta, Canada at the Movenpick Hotel, Karachi, November 21 & 22, 2015

UofA BSSaDon’t miss out on visiting the University of Alberta at the 39th Asian Student Education Fair to be held November 21 & 22, 2015 at the Movenpick Hotel in Karachi.  This will be the only time this year that you will be able to speak to their representative and get pertinent information and brochures about studying at the University of Alberta.

This research intensive university is listed in the top 100 worldwide and ranks in the top 5 in Canada.  It has 18 faculties and offers over 200 undergraduate programs, 367 Master’s programs and 180 PhD programs.  A degree from the University of Alberta is recognised worldwide and gives you the edge on a successful and promising future.

Canada is the ideal place to study as it offers international students high-quality education systems, great work programs, fantastic scenery and modern cosmopolitan cities.  Canada is a peaceful country.

So don’t miss out on visiting the booth for the University of Alberta at the 39th Asian Student Education Fair on November 21 & 22 at the Movenpick Hotel, Karachi.

4 Main Factors to Consider when Choosing a University/College

study in canada questionAs an international student, it can be very challenging to find the right university or college to study at in Canada.  Going through a consultant doesn’t always help because they may have limited exposure to Canada and its universities and colleges.  So here are some factors to consider when choosing where you want to student in Canada.

The University – This is the most crucial aspect of choosing a destination.  To help you decide you should look at these aspects of the institution:

  • World and National Rankings – World ranking associations are Times Higher Education and QS World University Rankings.  QS also gives rankings by country.  For example the University of Alberta is ranked number 4 according to the QS index.  Also a country’s national newspapers may help you find information on national rankings.
  • Teaching Excellence – How qualified are the professors and even if qualified, can they teach?  These are important questions.  According to MacLean’s magazine, a well-recognised paper in Canada, Alberta has two of the best teaching universities in Canada.  Additionally, the University of Alberta has many professors who hold Excellence Teaching Awards.
  • Academics – In addition to ranking and teaching excellence the program and curriculum are equally important.  You must attend an accredited institution, especially if you want to have your degree recognised and also obtain a study permit to study in Canada.  Accreditation is granted to universities and colleges whose curriculum and etc. meets national standards.

Finances – Factors to consider here are:

  • Scholarships for international students – Some Canadian universities give good scholarships to international students.
  • Permission to Work – The Canadian government allows international students to work up to 20 hours per week while they are a student and this can be done both on and off campus.
  • Cost – not only does tuition cost come in here, but the cost of living.  The same cost of living doesn’t apply to all provinces, so when you are planning on studying in Canada, you will want to look at which province/city has an affordable cost of living.

Support Services – look for a university or college that has great support services such as:

  • International Centre – where workshops, cultural and recreational activities and helpful staff abound.  International students studying in Canada need this kind of support.
  • Health Services – what kind of health plans and on-campus services are provided?
  • Career Placement Services – many campuses offer both international and national students assistance in resume writing, interview workshops and job postings.  Also when choosing a university or college to study at in Canada, find out if it offers internships and co-operative work programs to their students.
  • Security – what kind of security is provided?  For example the University of Alberta has 24 hour security at their student residences.

Location – location is so important for several reasons such as climate, social life, cultural or religious relevance, cost of living and job opportunities once you graduate or even while a student.  For example, 88% of Georgian College’s graduates find employment after studying in Canada.

If you would like to know more about studying in Canada and about their fine education system, you might want to consider the services of Alberta Rose Education Centre, a Pakistan based company to help you find the right undergraduate program.  They also provide editing services and other consultancy services for prospective graduate students.

Study Options beyond MBBS

studying medicine in canadaOne of the most frequently asked questions I get when I tour high schools in Pakistan are those related to studying in our MBBS (MD) program in Canada.

The University of Alberta, along with some other Canadian universities, does not offer the MD program to international students.  The Medical Doctor program at the university is a quota program and there are enough Canadian and permanent residents to fill that quota.

But, as nice as an MD designation might be, there are so many other options to consider studying when exploring what medical options there are to study in Canada.

For example, at the University of Alberta, you will want to consider the following:

  • Biomedical Engineering – This is a program offered jointly between the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry and the Faculty of Engineering.  There is a promising future in Biomedical Engineering.
  • Medical Laboratory Sciences – Offered through the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, this four year bachelor’s degree is often used as the pre-med degree for the MD program.  Medical laboratory scientists are in high demand in Canada in hospitals, clinics, research labs, etc.
  • Biomedical Sciences – Offered through the Faculty of Science, it is often used as the prerequisite bachelor’s degree to an MD program.  A degree in biomedical sciences can also lead to graduate studies in any number of Faculty of Medicine departments; such as Genetics, Oncology, etc.
  • Nanotechnology – This is the up-and-coming technology of the future and is used in computing, medicine, engineering and many more disciplines.  The University of Alberta houses the National Institute of Nanotechnology where research includes the medical field.  You will not want to sit out on this today’s technology.
  • Pharmacy – Pharmacists in Canada are in big demand and receive a handsome salary.  But Pharmacy goes beyond the drug store and reaches into research and development of new and improved drugs for curing all kinds of diseases.
  • Nursing – Canada needs RN’s who want to pursue a very rewarding career in this much needed medical profession.
  • Radiation Therapy – By taking a bachelor’s degree in Radiation Therapy in the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry, you will be providing a very necessary treatment to cancer patients.
  • Medical Research at the Graduate Level – Take your bachelor’s degree either in Pakistan or Canada, get a GPA of 3.5 or more and apply for a Master’s degree in one of the many departments in the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry.  Graduate Admissions Committees do prefer students who have studied at in Canada at the undergraduate level.

Broaden your scope to discover all that awaits you in the field of medicine.  Don’t limit yourself, but imagine what you would like to do in this field and it may well await you at the University of Alberta.

Physio Therapy Students in Joan Loomis classroom

Teaching Excellence Important Factor When Choosing a University

When you are looking at which international university or college to study at, Canada should come up on your radar screen.  Although many factors go into choosing a university, factors such as financial costs, standard of living, programs offered and the quality of education offered at the institution where you want to study at must be considered.  A Canadian education has much to offer the international student:

PISA Ranking – According to the 2009 PISA report, among OECD countries, Canada stands 6th well above the UK and the USA.  Although this survey was conducted with 15-year old students, it is still an indicator of the calibre of education and teaching that takes place in Canada’s post-secondary education.

Conference Board of Canada in their report, puts Canada in third place just below Japan and Finland with Australia next and the UK and the USA trailing far behind.  The top provinces in this report are BC, Ontario and Alberta.  Inclusion in the survey looked at three criteria, standard of living, population size and geographic size so this report was limited to 15 peer countries.

QS Rankings – Although many of the top spots went to US and UK universities, Canada didn’t lag far behind.  Canada’s fewer may be a factor, but nevertheless, 23 universities in the QS list were among the top 200 where quality of subject taught was measured.  Twenty-nine subjects were surveyed and for the Canadian universities, the leaders in all 29 subjects were the University of Alberta and McGill University.

The UN consistently ranks Canada as one of the best places in the world to live.  It is also one of the best places to study in because it’s universities rank among the top 100 in the world, i.e.:  The University of Alberta currently holds 84th position according to QS rankings.  Our universities are noted for innovation and world-class collaborative research and development.  The Canadian government also offers post-graduate work incentives to attract international students to its shores.

Canada is indeed the place to study in.

Pakistan Makes the List of Top Sending Countries to Canada.

Students who want to study in Canada are getting visas as is indicated by the 2013 statistics compiled by Statistics Canada.  Out of 50 countries, Pakistan stands number 12 in the list.  The statistics show China and India leading the pack of international students studying in Canada, but one does have to take into consideration their 1.3 billion and 1.2 billion populations when analysing the data.

studying in canada visasA better way to look at the 12 countries is to consider the percentage of students who study in Canada based on a country’s population.  This will give a more realistic picture of how many students receive visas to study in Canada.

studying in canada percentageBased on percentage per population, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, South Korea and France hold top spots for students studying in Canada.  This is in contrast to just looking at numbers which places China, India, South Korea and France in the top four sending countries.

Reasons for some countries having more international students studying in Canada vary from unilateral agreements (Mexico), university exchanges (France), government sponsorship (Saudi Arabia) and etc.  If we compare countries with similar populations such as Japan, Brazil, Nigeria and Pakistan, we see that the variation in student populations in Canada is not significantly different.

Unfortunately, statistics on the number of student visa applications as opposed to student visa applications granted are not available, but what is available is sufficient to encourage Pakistani students that Canada doesn’t reject your study permit application if you meet their basic requirements.