ESOL (English To the Speakers of Other Languages)


A. Mission Statement


The English to Speakers of Other Languages program at Georgia Christian University is designed to provide students with the communication skills, both business and academic, vital to life in the United States.  This program provides a complete course of instruction in the linguistic as well as pragmatic aspects of the English language, thereby enabling students to acclimate to and participate in communities ranging from local to international as well as from university to professional.

B. Program Overview

As a quarter system, are four 8-week terms in each academic year, August to May, in addition to two 4-week summer intensive terms.  All new and transfer students are tested upon arrival to ensure placement in the appropriate level.  ESOL classes meet five days per week, Monday through Friday, for a total of 18 hours of classroom instruction.  Both morning and evening classes are available year round.  Coursework consists of grammar, writing, listening, and speaking activities utilizing various forms of media and reality applicable to life in the United States.  Classes range in size from 4 to 12 students.  Class sizes are kept to a minimum in order to maximize the learning experience.

C. Courses Offered

Integrated Skills (IS)

This course focuses on the development of listening and speaking skills via authentic listening texts. A variety of themes, topics, and genres are studied. Students discuss the themes and topics to develop their ability to understand and use all aspects of oral language required in a North American setting. (Fall and Spring Quarters only)

Fundamentals of Grammar (FG)

This course is devoted explicitly to English grammar. Students develop their comprehension of, and ability to use, common areas of grammar. All grammatical structures are studied in authentic contexts, focusing on students’ understanding of the variations in grammar that occur in different registers. (Fall and Spring Quarters only)

 Learning Via Media (LM)

This course focuses on developing learner autonomy when interacting with various forms of media. These media include, but are not limited to, newspapers, magazines, films, television, the internet, and other printed sources of information. Students develop skills in understanding the characteristics of different media and how to extract the information they need from them. (Fall and Spring Quarters only)

Real World Exposure (RW)

This course attends to oral communication in the diverse settings students find themselves outside of class. Students learn about Atlanta, Georgia, United States and American culture while developing their communication skills in authentic contexts. At all levels, students improve their oral intelligibility as well as their ability to use the English they already know in real-world situations. (Fall and Spring Quarters only)

Summer Cure-alls (SC)

This is a study of landmarks and tourist attractions in Atlanta, Georgia and the southeast United States via interaction with authentic texts. Students collaborate on projects centered on situations which commonly occur when planning or taking a vacation culminating in a day or weekend class trip. (Summer Intensive only)

Community Involvement (CI)

This course focuses on social activism in the metro Atlanta, Georgia area. Students gain knowledge of community issues and concerns via an exploration of what problems plague Atlanta, how these problems are currently being addressed, and what students can do to help resolve the problems thus becoming active citizens. The primary texts for the course will be authentic materials garnered through active student-teacher research collaboration. (Summer Intensive only)

TOEFL Preparatory (TP)

This course is designed specifically for students in need of advanced preparation for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Coursework includes vocabulary, reading comprehension, listening comprehension, composition and speaking exercises designed to emulate TOEFL type questions and situations. Students gain vital test taking skills specific to the current and prospective versions of TOEFL.

D. ESOL Faculty & Staff

Georgia Christian University faculty and staff are all administrative and educational professionals with solid reputations in their respective fields.  In addition to having worked in the United States, all ESOL instructors have acquired extensive intercultural and pedagogical skills via vast overseas experience.  Moreover, the majority of which hold advanced degrees in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, Linguistics, or Education.  GCU’s commitment to quality and self-evaluation is evident not only in our teachers’ excellence, but also in our staff’s as evinced by our dedication to professional development locally and nationally.

E. Placement and Orientation

Upon registration, new and transfer students are administered placement tests consisting of objective, listening/speaking, and written aspects to determine their individual levels. In addition to a placement assessment, students are given a brief orientation to Georgia Christian University outlining our policies and procedures prior to the beginning of each quarter. Our faculty and staff are always available to assist students with questions and concerns they have.

F. Admission Requirements

Following documents and fees should be submitted to be eligible for admission at GCU;

  1. Completed GCU application form
  2. $100 application fee
  3. Official transcripts from the last school attended (high school, college/university, or language institute)
  4. The person responsible for tuition payment must:

a)    sign the affidavit of support located in the application packet

b)    provide a bank verification of sufficient funds for one academic year of study (approximately $14,000 USD)

  1. Proof of immunization against measles, mumps, and rubella (must be completed by the first week of class)
  2. A student who is a citizen of a country other than the United States must obtain an F-1 student visa prior to course enrollment. The F-1 student visa may be obtained from the American consulate in your home country with the I-20 form issued by GCU. Once you have submitted items 1-4, the I-20 will be issued to you within 15 business days. It is recommended to apply to Georgia Christian University’s ESOL program at least 60 days prior to the start of the desired session of study.
  3. The application may be faxed with supporting documents, but the original documents must be mailed or presented upon arrival.