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Learn English

Main Academic English Program

Learn the English language skills and academic skills needed to study successfully at U.S. universities and colleges.

The Intensive American Language Center (IALC) at Washington State University is an accredited, academic preparation Intensive English Program.

IALC Mission

  • Provide high-quality intensive English language instruction in a supportive, respectful atmosphere to help students meet their academic, professional, and personal goals
  • Prepare students academically and culturally to successfully navigate university life
  • Support the internationalization of Washington State University and the local community

The main program offers five, eight-week sessions per year and  six levels of language instruction, from beginning to high advanced.

  1. Beginner
  2. Low Intermediate
  3. Intermediate
  4. High Intermediate
  5. Advanced – Undergraduate study preparation (meets WSU language proficiency requirement for undergraduate admission)
  6. High Advanced – Graduate study preparation (meets WSU language proficiency requirement for graduate study)

Classes begin at 9 a.m. and end around 3 p.m. You are expected to attend class and participate. There are 15 students or less in each class. Students come from all over the world. We only speak English in class.

Your classes and teachers’ offices are all located in the same building. You will receive individual attention and instruction from our teachers. Residence halls, apartments, and restaurants are a 5-10 minute walk from our building. We regularly offer social and cultural activities to prepare you for life in the United States and at Washington State University. You are welcome here.

Curriculum

Instruction focuses on building the speaking, listening, and writing skills that are essential to academic success. A variety of elective courses are available in each program.

The IALC’s main program consists of 21 hours of instruction per week. This means each student will take 18 core hours at each level and choose a three-credit mandatory elective.

Levels 1-3

  • Reading/Composition
  • Grammar
  • Listening/Speaking
  • Electives: Playing with Grammar, Pronunciation and Conversation, Idioms and Slang, English and Film

Levels 4-6

  • Reading/Composition
  • Grammar
  • Research Writing
  • Academic Listening and Discussion
  • Listening/Speaking
  • Electives: IELTS Prep, TOEFL Prep, Business Writing, Math Vocabulary, Enginnering Vocabulary, English and Film

We offer many field trips and events to help you fully experience life in the United States.

A Path to WSU Admission

Completion of Levels 5 and 6 may be used instead of TOEFL scores for admission to WSU.

  • Advanced (Level 5)  meets the language proficiency requirement to enter WSU as an undergraduate.
  • High advanced (Level 6) meets the language proficiency requirement for entry to WSU’s Graduate School.

Community College Admission

If you plan to attend a community college after your English language study, please contact us.

The IALC has agreements with numerous Washington State community colleges. These agreements allow students who pass Level 4 at the IALC to attend those community colleges without taking the TOEFL.

Student Computer Labs

The WSU Tri-Cities IALC offers several computer labs equipped with personal computer workstations and plenty of study space.

Students are welcome to use the lab’s computers for virtually any purpose. The labs provide ideal places to write papers for classes, communicate with friends and family at home, listen to music, or watch videos.

Language Support Program

If your English ability is preventing you from being successful in your classes or your research at WSU, the Language Support Program can help.

International students at WSU who want additional language support (and who are not on appointment in their department) can take courses at the IALC and still maintain their full-time status.

Language Support Program students must be enrolled full time at WSU, but you can enroll in language support courses at the IALC for up to 50 percent of your required load. For more information or to apply, please e-mail the IALC.