Overview for Faculty
All international students, graduate and undergraduate, whose native language is not English take the CU ESL placement test a few days before classes start in their first semester here. The test consists of two parts, a timed writing sample and a grammar section. The latter has several short answer sections requiring sentence completion with various verb tenses, sequencing, writing of topic sentences, etc. The placement tests are scored by ESL faculty, and students are either exempt from ESL study at CU or placed into a course. Students, their advisors, and, for graduate students, department secretaries and the international graduate students advisor receive email notification of test results.
As can be seen from the course list below, there are two levels of writing courses. Undergraduates must complete the higher level (or be exempt) before taking writing-intensive courses. Graduate students are expected to be exempt, complete the upper level course, or complete the lower level course and then the upper one, depending on their placement test results. The full semester courses earn 3 credits, and the 8-week courses earn 1 credit.
In addition, graduate students who will be TAs are interviewed before classes start to check that they will be understood by native speaker students, and they may be required to take the oral skills course, LA 555. This course is open to all grad students and other international visitors.
The courses offered are as follows (not all courses are offered every semester):
- EAP250 ESL Academic Writing for Undergraduates I
- Upon completion of this course (a grade of C or better), they will then be required to either enroll in LA350 or 354 EAP Academic Writing for Undergraduates II in the next semester unless exempt from further EAP courses. Covers coherent, well-supported paragraphs & essays in several rhetorical modes, topic sentences, grammar, and vocabulary useful in academic writing.
- EAP350 EAP Academic Writing for Undergraduates II
- Upon completion of this course (a grade of C or better), students are able to take Writing Intensive courses. Covers use of various types of evidence to support a thesis, avoiding plagiarism, library research, writing data commentary, summarizing, paraphrasing.
- EAP354 EAP Academic Writing Seminar for Undergraduates III
- Can be taken at the same time as other writing intensive courses; covers same material as 350, but in less depth; meets for only ~ 10 weeks.
- EAP550 EAP Academic Writing for Graduates I
- Upon completion of this course (pass/fail), students will then be required to either enroll in LA552 or 554 EAP Academic Writing for Graduates II in the next semester unless exempt from further EAP courses. Content similar to 250.
- EAP552 EAP Academic Writing for Graduates II
- Attention is given to key academic writing skills such as avoiding plagiarism, writing data commentaries, writing introductions for articles, critiquing, summarizing, defining, etc.
- EAP554 EAP Academic Writing Seminar for Graduates III
- Content similar to 552, but class meets for only ~ 10 weeks.
- EAP555 Academic Spoken Communication Skills for TAs and other International Graduate Students
- Focuses on pronunciation, intonation, patterns, and other features of fluent American English; also covers classroom environment, non-verbal communication, etc.