Choosing an English Language Program in the United States
Hi, welcome to the presentation Choosing
an English Language Institute in the United States. This is presented by
Katherine Murrin from Long Beach City College. Alright, so this is what we’re
going to talk about today. First thing is what is an English Language
Institute? The two types of English language programs. A Stand Alone School
and a University based program. Researching a school, questions to ask,
and important things to verify. Okay, first of all what is an English Language
Institute? In the United States, the word school describes any place where people
learn. You can call a college a school, you can call a university a school, you can
use the word school for any English language institute, undergraduate or
graduate program or secondary high school. English language Institutes are
programs for students who want to study English only. Som there is no bachelor’s
degree or master’s degree affiliated with these. Sometimes they are called English
language schools, English language programs, or English language Institutes.
Students need to obtain an F1 visa to study at an English language institute.
Ok, so right now we’re going to talk about Stand Alone English schools.
stand Alone English English school are often a school located in an urban area
that only offers classes in English. Many of these schools offer short term
English programs they tend to focus on informal English, such as conversation
sometimes offer specialized classes in TOEFL or business English. They’re often
part of a major corporation and for-profit. They’re good for students
that want a less formal learning experience. And with these schools the
instructors are only required to have a bachelor’s degree.
Alright, the next we’re gonna look at are University or College English school
programs. English language schools that are located on a college or university
campus. They focus on academic English and preparation for U.S. colleges. They
will often allow students to enter the college without TOEFL if they complete
the highest level. These are good for students interested
in doing a degree in the U.S., but need more English preparation. And, there’s a
higher standard for the instructors they often have are required to have an M.A.
degree or higher. Okay, so we’re going to look at some ways that you can research
schools. The first and most popular way is Google, and that includes directing
you to school websites, ESL directories, online review sites like Yelp, Google, and
Facebook. We’ll also take a look at Education Consultants and EducationUSA.
Alright, the first one is googling, ESL directories, and online reviews. The pros:
they’re convenient because all you need is a computer and internet connection.
They can be very informative. It is inexpensive. And, online reviews can give
you an idea about school culture. The cons: is there’s a lot of misinformation.
Sometimes, you don’t get to see get to read about all the different costs
associated with the school. They tend to favor schools that pay to advertise with
Google or with an ESL directory. And often these can be more expensive
schools. There’s too much information that it can be overwhelming. Online
reviews can be fake or done by one person who is angry, so it may not give
you the best idea of what that school culture is completely like. Alright, the
next type of way to research schools are education consultants. The pros: is they
speak your native language. They’ll assist with the application process,
including visa interview. And they’re often familiar with the U.S. education.
The cons: is they charge a fee to use or charge the school a fee.
Also, they might send you to more expensive schools or schools they have a
relationship with. Sometimes, they’re not completely familiar with schools
location in the U.S. So, they might tell you a school is really close to New York
City. When in fact it’s actually two hours away. So, these are some things that
you need to be a little bit careful with. The last thing we’ll look at is
EducationUSA. The EducationUSA Network promotes u.s. higher education to
millions of students around the world by offering accurate comprehensive and
current information about opportunities to study accredited post-secondary
institutions in the United States. The pros: they assist with the admissions
process and standardized testing requirements. They have information about
how to finance a US education. They can help with the student visa process.
Preparing for departure to the United States. And, they’re free
and non-biased information. The cons: is they’re located in major cities often in
the Fulbright offices or US embassies or consulates. Okay, questions to ask
yourself. Where do I want to study? U.S. culture weather and locations vary.
It’s important to study in a location that you will be happy. How much money do
I have? The cost of living in the USA varies. School cost to varies a lot too.
Often schools located at a community college or public university are less
expensive. What type of program do I want? The learning objectives are very
different at each school. Some schools are more about conversational English
and others about academic English. So, it’s really important to know what is
important to you and what type of English do I want to speak. Important
things to research: Make sure the school is SEVP certified. This means that they
can give you an i-20 they’ll help prepare for your F1 visa. And, even when
an institution is s SEVP certified, and able to issue i-20 and DS-2019 forms for
use and visa applications it may not hold national or regional accreditation.
So, this is really important especially if you’re looking to have a school that
has a lot of qualified teachers. So, make sure you check for accreditation from
the Department of Education, Council for Higher Education, ACCET, or CET. Good luck! And we wish you the best in your future studies in the