International Students


ESL for International Degree Students

Any non-native English speaker admitted to the university may take ESL courses. Special students and exchange students may be allowed to take ESL courses when space is available.

Undergraduate Students

Most new and transfer undergraduate students must take the ESL Assessment Test (ESLAT) and enroll in the recommended ESL courses until they have completed English 118. English 118 fulfills the Comm A communication requirement for undergraduates.

After a student has taken an ESL course, instructors re-evaluate the student's English language proficiency and recommend further ESL courses as needed. It is not necessary to take all the courses in the ESL sequence of 114, 115, 116, 117 and 118. Students may move from 115 directly to 117, for example.

Most ESL courses are 3-credit courses.  Undergraduates receive 3 degree credits for English 118 and 3 more credits for any other ESL course for a maximum of 6 degree credits.

Transfer students who have taken ESL at another school may be eligible to receive three transfer credits after completing English 118. The Office of International Undergraduate Admissions determines whether or not such a course can be transferred.

Graduate Students

Graduate students with a TOEFL score below 93 on the iBt or below 580 on the paper-based TOEFL must take the ESL Assessment Test (ESLAT) upon arrival. Some departments require the ESLAT regardless of TOEFL score.

Graduate students should enroll in the recommended ESL course in their first semester based on the recommendation determined by their ESLAT test.  Taking the recommended course will fulfill the ESL requirement for most students.

Students may wish to work further on their English. People who want to enroll in English 344, 345, 349 or 350 may do so without taking the ESLAT. See Course Descriptions for Academic Classes to find out if one of these classes meets your needs.

ESL courses do not count toward the degree for graduate students.