Curriculum

CORE CLASSES
IEP Core Classes meet 18 hours per week. General English is taught at the lower proficiency levels to give students a strong foundation. At higher proficiency levels, Academic English classes are offered to give students the language and skills necessary for university study.
Students are tested upon entry to the program for placement into the appropriate level of classes. Students move up in the levels of the program as they master the skills in each level.

Core Courses per Area
The courses taught for General English (Levels 1 and 2) and Academic English (Levels 3, 4, and 5) are provided below. In Fall semester and Spring semester, classes meet Monday through Thursday. In Summer semester, some classes meet on Friday morning also. For an example of a weekly class schedule for each level, see the sample course schedule.

Level 1 (Advanced Beginner) and Level 2 (Low Intermediate):
Vocabulary Building
Integrated Skills: Grammar, Listening and Speaking
Reading
Writing

Note: Our Level 1 is called "advanced" beginner because we assume literacy skills, basic familiarity with the English alphabet, and some prior exposure to English of some sort, whether in a school course, a community class, or through living in an English-speaking country. In other words, although our Level 1 does indeed teach basic English, incoming students should note that it does not start at absolutelyzero.

Level 3 (Intermediate) and Level 4 (High Intermediate):
Grammar: Using English Accurately 
Academic Speaking and Listening Skills 
Academic Reading 
Academic Writing 

Level 5 (Advanced):
Grammar in Use 
Oral Communication
Academic Reading 
Academic Writing 
Course Content
The first levels of the IEP develop the basic grammatical knowledge, vocabulary, and language skills needed to be fluent and accurate in English. Students practice English through a variety of relevant and interesting activities related to everyday life.Students in the higher levels focus on academic English skills that are helpful upon entering undergraduate or graduate degree programs in the United States. To improve academic reading and listening skills, students analyze and practice with academic texts and lectures. Writing lessons focus on academic essay writing, research, and critical thinking and analysis. Finally, through group work and presentations, students improve oral communication abilities, specifically preparing them for participating in academic classroom settings.

By the end of the IEP experience, students should be ready to participate in an academic program in the United States and should feel comfortable using their English for both everyday life and professional work needs.



LANGUAGE ENRICHMENT ACTIVITIES
A variety of enrichment activities are offered each afternoon at the IEP. One is required for new students, one is an optional session-long commitment, and two are optional on a weekly basis.

Mondays: Common Hour (required)
Common Hour provides new IEP students with extra listening and speaking practice. Through creative group assignments, visiting with guest speakers, or going on mini-field trips, new IEP students stretch their oral communication abilities outside of class.

Wednesdays: Language Partners (optional session-long commitment)
Language Partners is a conversation program in which IEP students are paired with an English-speaking student for friendship and language practice.

Tuesdays and Thursdays: Language Lab
A computer lab with English language-learning software is reserved during these hours especially for IEP students.

ELECTIVE COURSES
IEP Students have a variety of elective courses available to them for afternoon or evening extracurricular study. Courses offered change each session. IEP students do have to pay an extra fee for these courses, but they are offered at a deeply discounted rate.
They include the following:
  • TOEFL® Preparation
  • Business Writing
  • Business Listening and Speaking Skills
  • Pronuncation and Accent Training
  • Research Writing Strategies