Laying the language foundations – Your path to a top university
Source: Salem State University

It’s no secret that the universities that sit highest in the worldwide league tables are English-speaking, from Oxford and Cambridge in the UK to Harvard and Princeton in the US.

For this reason, those seeking a high-quality secondary education may have to invest in an education overseas. But first, international students must ensure their English is up to scratch.

In fact, some of these excellent institutions are committed to helping students, providing intensive English language courses to help international students before they start their degrees.

These types of courses are intensive foundation programs designed to help international students get their English language skills in line with requirements, serving as a pathway to university.

Sometimes students who study these programs go on to study at other universities, but they often remain with the same institution in which they pursued the IELP, because they already feel welcome and integrated.

In short, if you’re a student wanting to study abroad but you don’t yet meet the language requirements, you can enrol in an intensive English language course and, upon successful completion, you can potentially remain at the same university to pursue a full-time degree. The University would love to have you!

Here are four top universities offering courses to help you improve your English and take your studies to the next level.


Salem State offers a course called the Intensive English Language Program (IELP), helping hundreds of international and local English language learners develop their English abilities and cultural knowledge to reach their personal, professional and academic goals since 1993.

The course serves as a pathway to 32 undergraduate majors and 24 graduate programs. Many students have successfully transitioned to SSU undergraduate and graduate degrees in business administration, computer science, healthcare studies, education, mathematics and biomedical science.

Accelerate your English language learning with this innovative, hands-on course that has been strategically aligned to the Global Scale of English (GSE) standards for academic and professional communication.

Source: Salem State University

Students can satisfy Salem State language proficiency requirements for direct admission by meeting core curriculum standards in the IELP, reaching required benchmark scores on progress assessments. You will not only learn the language but also engage in local cultural activities to help you make sense of your new university environment.

With a four-day study week, small class sizes and personalised learning plans, don’t miss out on this excellent opportunity to study in this historic seaside city only 24-km from Boston.


The CELOP at Boston University has a variety of Intensive English offerings, allowing you to fit your language learning around your personal schedule.

You can choose from short courses like the Intensive 6-week and the Intensive 4-week. Alternatively, spread your studies over 12-weeks with the Intensive 12-Week 25-Hours course or the Intensive 12-Week 20-Hours course.

A huge benefit of the Intensive English Course at Boston University is the access it grants to university admissions resources, including free college advising and TOEFL waivers to Boston-area colleges and universities.You will experience campus life with the chance to live in on-campus housing, engaging with BU undergraduate and graduate students through student organisations, activities and sporting events

You will also customize your program, choosing a core concentration and two elective classes in topics such as Media News or American Culture through Movies.

Source: Boston University

“I undoubtedly chose to come to CELOP because I heard they have a good reputation and offer a variety of English classes that allow students to choose their two electives in a semester, which makes it different from other language schools,” says Ariyaporn Lertariyanunt, a CELOP alumni from Thailand.


As a leader in intensive, student-focused English-learning, the IEP at UCF provides an Intensive English Program – a high-impact curriculum based on face-to-face instruction in core language subjects, preparing you for your future.

Whether you’re looking for better English proficiency or want to attend UCF to earn your undergraduate or graduate degree, this course will help you achieve your goals.

You will focus on achieving fluency and preparing for work and life in the USA with courses like Advanced Fiction, Advanced Vocabulary, Business Writing and Cinema and Culture.

This course not only offers elective classes, designed to meet a variety of interests, but also student success days. Every Friday is one of these, in which instructors, tutors and advisors will be available for all students to ask questions.

Friday afternoons offer the perfect opportunity for you to practice English, with the course dedicating time to cultural activities both on campus, in Orlando and around the state of Florida.

Source: UCF


If you would love to study in Canada, you could choose the English Language Institute at York University, Toronto. The Institute provides an accelerated English course for Academic Purposes called Destination York, offering conditional acceptance to more than 100 undergraduate programs.

Improve your academic reading, writing, listening and speaking skills on this 8-week pathway program, in which you can enrol after applying to a degree program at York.

The program is taught by qualified instructors and features an innovative curriculum, in which you’ll listen to key ideas in lectures and presentations, note-taking and analyzing academic readings; writing university-level research papers and engaging in critical thinking, time management and teamwork.

Successful completion of the Destination York program fulfils the York University language entry requirement, with no other test required. The university feels the program is important for International Students to aid successful integration into the institution later on.

Ensuring your pathway into York is as smooth as possible, the course grants you access to undergraduate advising services, comprehensive information sessions with all faculties, and workshops that keep you informed of next steps.

*Some of the institutions featured in this article are commercial partners of Study International

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