English Language Program

Last updated: June 28, 2012 at 4:09 p.m.


Undergraduate Students
Undergraduate students may be eligible for university-funded individual English Language Program (formerly English as a Second Language Program) writing tutorials to supplement their work in Composition, UWS or other writing intensive courses. Oral communication tutorials may also be offered on a limited basis. Please contact the Shelby Bleiweis (, Program Administrator of the English Language and Gateway Schools Programs, if you would like additional information about how to sign up for a tutorial.

Graduate Students
Graduate students may enroll in one-credit (200-level) ESL courses. Two courses, oral skills and written skills, are offered every semester (refer to course catalog). University-funded individual tutorials are also available. In addition, a diagnostic language test is given during orientation week. Please contact the English Language Program Director for additional information about graduate-level ESL courses, tutorials, or the diagnostic language test.

Courses of Instruction

(200 and above) Primarily for Graduate Students

ESL 201g Academic Interactions
Focuses on strategies for effective classroom interactions, impromptu speaking, and interacting with instructors and advisors. Emphasis on functional language used in typical university settings. American culture issues will also be incorporated through course reading material. Class instruction is highly interactive with frequent opportunity for student input. Considerable amount of out of class assignments will be given to accelerate adaptation to Brandeis and American culture. Usually offered every semester.

ESL 202g Writing Academic English
Prepares graduate students to write academic papers. Emphasis is on accuracy, organization, and documentation. Strategies for reading deeply and yet rapidly will be practiced in conjunction with writing assignments. Usually offered every semester.

ESL 203g Teaching and Presenting in English
Prerequisite: ESL 201g or approval by ESL interim director.
For graduate students who have to teach in English or graduate students who wish to improve their presentation skills. Emphasis on developing effectiveness and clarity, and engaging your audience during an academic talk or lab instruction. Teaching assistant responsibilities will be simulated during classes. Students will receive extensive peer and instructor feedback on comprehensibility, interpersonal and intercultural communication skills. Usually offered every semester.

ESL 204g Graduate Writing
Prerequisite: ESL 202g or with approval of ESL interim director.
For graduate students experienced in writing and who are currently working on advanced course assignments and/or research. Class meetings will be supplemented with frequent individual conferences. Usually offered every semester.

ESL 205g Writing for Science I
Develops basic academic writing skills for graduate students in the sciences. The emphasis will be on acquiring fundamental language structures required for the genres of writing crucial to the sciences; emails, instructions/outlines, processes/procedures, summaries and lab reports. Students will benefit from classroom instruction, group work and peer reviews. Usually offered every year.

ESL 206g Writing for Science II
Improves academic writing skills for graduate students in the sciences. The emphasis will be on acquiring language skills useful for preparing lab reports, summaries, research proposals, and academic papers for publication. Apart from class instruction and peer reviews, students will receive extensive feedback on their writing through individual conferences with the instructor. Usually offered every year.