|English as a Second Language Program|
UWest’s English as a Second Language (ESL) Programs provides students with direct language instruction and support necessary to improve English proficiency for personal, professional, and academic purposes. Courses are offered across levels and skill areas to develop fluency through a comprehensive curriculum grounded in the language domains of speaking, listening, grammar, reading, conversation, pronunciation, and writing.
UWest offers a number of programs to meet the academic, general and professional English language learners. In addition, ESL students who complete their program will receive a Certificate of Completion that states the level, date and number of hours completed in the program. Below are descriptions of our English programs. For full description and details, visit individual web pages.
English for Academic Purposes (EAP) is integrated into the ESL curriculum to improve English skills necessary for collegiate success across core subject areas. Emphasis is placed on the following language domains: writing, reading, grammar, vocabulary, listening comprehension, fluency development, and oral intelligibility. Academic skills addressed include test- and note-taking skills, academic vocabulary usage, critical reading and writing, comprehending academic lectures, research and library skills, and formal composition forms and development, including research papers.
English for Specific Purposes provides working professionals and busy students with specific language instruction and support through a series of scheduled six-week modules with courses conveniently scheduled on evenings and weekends. The curriculum is designed to help students improve their English proficiency for personal, professional, and academic purposes.
Throughout the year, UWest offers special programs for people of all ages. The Program in American Cultural Exchange is offered in conjunction with the Department of Continuing Education. The program is designed for groups and combines English teaching with exciting cultural activities and excursions. In class, students are encouraged to speak out as they learn about the United States, its cultures, and customs. Outside of class, students practice what they have learned when they visit nearby cultural centers and popular attractions such as the Getty Center, Disneyland, Hollywood, and the many other exciting sights southern California has to offer.
UWest’s ESL faculty hold advanced degrees in such fields as English, TESOL, linguistics, and cultural studies. Many also teach courses in general education and English, giving them insight into the academic needs of students who plan to pursue a degree at UWest or another American university. For instructor biographies, please visit ESL Faculty page.
To advance through each level in the program, students must
With the English chair’s approval, students may seek to advance more than one level by retaking the English Placement Test (EPT) at the end of the semester. However, it should be noted that students may be moved to a lower level based on the results of the retest.
The ESL program is an intensive language learning program. To succeed, students must attend classes regularly and participate actively. Ninety percent (90%) attendance is required to receive a passing grade in any course.
Students who miss more than 10 hours of any ESL course during one semester without the instructor’s approval may be dropped from the course. F-1 students who are dropped from a course fall below full-time status (defined as 20 hours per week for language training) which can lead to termination of the student’s I-20. The international student advisor can answer questions regarding F-1 policies.
Full-time students enrolled in the ESL Certificate program will receive a certificate each semester upon the successful completion of all courses with an average grade of B- or better. A grade of F in any class will not allow a student to progress or to receive a certificate. Each certificate acknowledges completion of one semester of ESL courses at the specified level. ESL courses are neither degree-applicable nor do they count as academic credit.