Southern Illinois University‘s Center for English as a Second Language (CESL) launched in 1966, placing it well ahead many similar institutions across the world. After nearly 50 years of development, the CESL offers highly refined curriculum designed to integrate incoming international students into the American higher-education system, equipping them with the English language proficiency and academic skills they require to excel.
Outstanding English language tuition at CESL
As part of its mission to prepare non-native English speakers for success in the American higher education system, CESL combines innovative teaching techniques, challenging curriculum and high-tech language acquisition technology to great effect. Students are encouraged to develop the language skills they need to thrive in an academic setting- and that’s only one dimension of the education on offer at Southern Illinois University. Students are also taught about US culture – an incredibly important aspect of the ‘study broad experience’ for incoming international students.
One of CESL’s core offerings, the Intensive English Program, is an eight-week session offered four time per year. During this course, students spend between 18 and 26 hours per week engaged in classroom study, tutoring and lab instruction. In addition to this, the Graduate Student English (GSE) intended specifically for postgraduate students.
The English courses offered through CESL are broken into six levels, ranging from beginner to advanced. Upon arrival at SIU, students are required to take the TOEFL to determine which level is best-suited to their level of ability. Further to this, CESL also offers a foundational ‘zero-level’ program available on a needs-specific basis for ambitious students with no previous background in English.
In the course of any program offered by CESL, students are exposed to a range of materials. In the process, all those enrolled cover the four core skills of any language – speaking, listening, reading and writing. Coursework also extends to include areas such as TOEFL preparation, public speaking, understanding culture through media, poetry reading and communication strategies.
Unique student experience at CESL
Based on the Carbondale campus, CESL students enjoy access to the same facilities as fully enrolled university students. They’re encouraged to further their studies by working with a private tutor in the Skills Center, signing up with the Conversation Partners program or working independently in one of the CESL language labs. By the time they’ve completed an eight-week course, students are more than prepared for the full university experience.
The campus is extremely beautiful, with an on-site forest and even a lake! Additionally, Carbondale has been named the state of Illinois’ ‘best small city’ for its breadth of facilities, access to major cities including Chicago and its relatively low cost of living.