Each one of our five levels consists of both a listening and speaking class as well as a reading and writing class. Each level is designed to take one semester, based on your progress. You'll take an ESL placement test during orientation to determine your initial level placement.
Pre-Academic Listening and Speaking (ESLI 20)
This class develops basic listening and speaking skills with a focus on the acquisition of the alphabet, numbers, the sound system, phonics, and survival level grammar and vocabulary.
Pre-Academic Reading and Writing (ESLI 21)
This class develops basic reading and writing skills at the word and sentence level, with a focus on the acquisition of survival level grammar and vocabulary. Students are also introduced to Stout's online learning system (D2L).
Note: For the pre-academic Level, students who start in the middle of the semester (ex: beginning of second quarter) or who start anytime during the summer session, may need to repeat the pre-academic level the next semester.
Academic I Listening and Speaking (ESLI 30)
This class develops listening and speaking skills, and grammar and vocabulary, for everyday discourse, develops dictionary skills that allow students to continue their learning outside of class, and introduces students to some fundamental features of academic discourse, particularly deductive organization for producing and interpreting academic discourse.
Academic I Reading and Writing (ESLI 31)
This class develops fundamental reading and writing skills at the paragraph level for ESL students. Students develop vocabulary and grammar to engage with more complicated ideas. They are also introduced to some fundamental features of academic discourse, particularly basic patterns of deductive organization for producing and interpreting academic discourse, and how to skim and scan for information in charts and tables. Students are also introduced to the importance of reading and following written directions for class assignments.
Academic II Listening and Speaking (ESLI 40)
In this class, students continue to enhance everyday listening and speaking skills and expand everyday vocabulary. They are also introduced to more academic vocabulary and academic speaking situations, such as formal classroom presentations and small group and class discussions. Students continue to develop deductive organizational skills using a larger variety of patterns and higher level grammar.
Academic II Reading and Writing (ESLI 41)
Students continue to enhance their reading and writing skills at the paragraph and essay levels. They begin to develop vocabulary and grammar that allow them to engage with more academically appropriate topics. They incorporate more patterns of deductive organization into their writing, improve their support, and add basic cohesive devices typical of academic writing. In addition, they expand their everyday vocabulary, and are introduced to academic vocabulary. They also start learning strategies that can decrease their need for dictionaries and help them compensate for vocabulary gaps when they encounter unfamiliar words. And finally, they are introduced to effective strategies for organizing their notes and class materials to use them more efficiently.
Academic III Listening and Speaking (ESLI 50)
In this class, students begin to focus on developing their academic listening and speaking skills as they increase their knowledge and use of high-level grammar and vocabulary. They encounter a much larger volume of academic vocabulary and begin to use it more actively in both formal and informal situations. They also begin to conduct basic research to find academically appropriate information and organize it in outlines as they develop and deliver well-supported and deductively organized academic presentations. Students also learn strategies for active participation in class discussions that have a wider variety of purposes, such as brainstorming or debating controversial topics in a civil manner.
Academic III Reading and Writing (ESLI 51)
Students begin to focus on developing their academic reading and writing skills and learn to monitor and evaluate their own performance. They begin to develop vocabulary and grammar that allow them to engage more fully with academic topics, ideas and opinions. They encounter a much larger volume of academic vocabulary and begin to use it more actively. They begin to develop critical thinking skills; specifically, they are introduced to logical reasoning, particularly common fallacies, and learn how to identify and develop a sound academic argument. They learn how to critically interpret information presented in graphs. They also conduct research to find relevant, credible, and academically appropriate information for research papers. And finally, they learn how to communicate effectively via e-mail with professors and peers.
Academic IV Listening and Speaking (ESLI 60)
In this class, students refine and sharpen their academic listening and speaking skills, as well as their higher-level grammar and vocabulary. The class prepares them for success in their academic classes by providing them with tools to monitor and improve their performance in formal speaking situations. The class also introduces them to authentic academic-style listening materials and exposes them to a large quantity of listening practice through independent listening assignments. In addition, students conduct original, primary (surveys) and other research, which they integrate into their formal presentations, and prepares them to be discussion leaders in their academic classes.
Academic IV Reading and Writing
Students refine and sharpen their academic reading and writing skills. They develop vocabulary and grammar that allow them to read and write academic texts that are academically appropriate and at a deep level of detail and support. They dramatically increase their ability to manage the academic vocabulary that they will encounter in their academic classes, by learning to divide words into their constituent parts – academic level Greek and Latin roots and affixes - and analyze their meaning. The class prepares students for success in their academic classes by providing them with tools to review, evaluate and revise their own writing. The class also introduces students to authentic academic-style reading materials, including research articles and university textbooks. In addition, students conduct research to find relevant, credible and academically appropriate information that includes two sides of an argument and data presented in graph form. They learn to present their research in writing using all appropriate academic conventions.