English Courses

 

General English

Business English

Academic English

Test Preparation

Tutoring

University Pathway

Overviews of WESLI's Programs

WESLI has over 30 courses in seven levels for developing your English language skills. Soon after you arrive, you will take a placement test to find your level. You can take classes according to your English level and future goals.

To meet your English goals, WESLI offers 5 ESL Programs. Each course is a combination of Core Classes and Electives. Whether you are studying English for personal reasons, MBA preparation, or for your career, WESLI has courses for you!

  • General English – for students who want to improve English abilities for personal reasons.
  • Academic Preparation – for students who want to attend U.S. or other English-speaking universities or colleges. Also see WESLI's University Pathway!
  • TOEFL/IELTS Preparation – for students seeking to improve test scores.
  • Business/Professional English – for students working in businesses or other professions, such as lawyers, doctors, journalists, scientists, politicians and teachers.
  • Private Classes – for students who want one-on-one tutoring instead of or in addition to classes. WESLI Tutoring provides a customized curriculum taught by experienced teachers. With flexible scheduling (1 to 10 hours/week year round), you will receive undivided attention to help you reach your goals quickly.

 

Class Information

You can mix and match WESLI’s English courses to suit your goals. There are seven levels at WESLI, 100 – 700. Full-time students will choose four courses in the level in which they are placed. If you want to learn English for your own enjoyment, you can take any of the following courses to learn and have fun!

Levels

Beginning Levels (100, 200 and 300) :    After completing Level 300, a student can conduct basic conversations, manage everyday life in an English-speaking environment, and read and write simple material.

Intermediate Levels (400 and 500) :   After completing Level 500, a student can converse comfortably on most subjects, read some basic academic and professional texts, and write an academic-style essay.

Advanced Academic and Business Skill Levels (600 and 700):     After completing levels 600 and 700, a student can conduct business in English, participate in most professional situations, and is ready to succeed in an American university program .

For more information about our levels, please see our  Student Learning Outcomes.

Homework

Students have required homework for all classes at WESLI. Most homework is writing, reading or listening. Many of the assignments are creatively designed to encourage students to use English in daily life. You will conduct surveys, participate in local events, listen to radio programs, attend university lectures, or design a magazine advertisement.

 

Grades

At the end of each session, students receive grades and comments from teachers on their performance. Grades are determined by the students’ ability to meet the class objectives, demonstrated through class participation and homework. Grades are on a scale of ‘A-F’. In most classes, a student must receive at least a ‘D’ in order to pass to the next level. A ‘C’ is required to enter 500 and 600 Academic Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking. A ‘BC’ is required to enter 700 Academic Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking.

Transcript and Certificate of Completion

Upon completion, students may receive a transcript and certificate.

Beginning/Intermediate Levels

At the beginning and intermediate levels, WESLI offers classes in:

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Grammar
  • Listening & Speaking
  • Pronunciation

These classes focus on developing the skills necessary to succeed in the advanced levels of the curriculum. Students spend time reading extensively and developing their critical reading skills; writing paragraphs and compositions on a variety of topics; learning basic grammar structures and usages; and learning how to communicate in different contexts and for different purposes. Students also learn strategies to improve their vocabulary acquisition.

Advanced Academic Levels

Academic Listening & Speaking (500-600)   provides students with guidance in understanding spoken English in a variety of situations, including lectures, radio and TV programs, and tours. Students will also improve their note-taking skills.

Academic Listening & Speaking (700)   sharpens students’ listening and speaking skills by using non-ESL materials covering a variety of topics.  In addition, students gain strategies for oral and written summaries, discussion, and note-taking. Daily activities may include listening to lectures and guest speakers, discussing short readings and giving presentations.

Academic Writing (500)  students will brainstorm and write organized essays using narrative and process styles. They will focus on using appropriate transitions, providing clear and relevant support to main ideas, and improving their writing using peer and self-editing.

Academic & Professional Business (600-700)  introduces students to key business concepts and vocabulary by reading about and discussing real companies and world economies. Students may also do short presentations, projects, or visit area businesses. Topics include finance, international trade, marketing, management, and ethics. Previous business training or experience is not required.

Academic Reading & Writing (600-700)  focuses on reading critically, summarizing, outlining, and responding to essays. Students discuss cultural topics, do vocabulary-building exercises, and learn how to analyze and make effective arguments. Students write various types of short essays, which requires use of the library and computers, and take essay exams.

Advanced Grammar for Speaking (600-700)  allows students the opportunity to improve their understanding and accuracy of grammatical structures that occur in both formal and casual speech. Students will do a variety of activities in class, including speaking, listening, writing, and role play in order to improve their use of tag questions, phrasal verbs, conditionals, gerunds and infinitives, indirect speech and modals.

Advanced Grammar for Writing (600-700)  reviews and extends the grammar concepts necessary to academic writing. Students will improve their skills in the following areas: paraphrasing, summarizing, and writing thesis statements, in addition to selecting, integrating, and documenting source material.

Communication/Culture (500-700)  uses the theme of culture as the topic for listening and speaking activities. The goal of the class is to help students improve their communication skills and learn about some aspects of American culture and the cultures of the students in the class.  Activities include class discussions, presentations, and surveys.

International Business Essentials (500-700)  provides students with opportunities to read about and discuss cultural issues related to business around the world. Students improve their communication skills while learning about the business cultures of the other students in the class.  Topics covered include hospitality, time, negotiating and stereotypes. Previous business training or experience is not required.

Pronunciation (400-700)  helps students improve their pronunciation of individual sounds in English, as well as patterns of stress, rhythm, and intonation. Students will do a variety of activities in class to practice pronunciation, in addition to performing listening tasks and recording their speech as homework. This class is open to students from levels 400 to 700.

Public Speaking (600-700)  provides instruction and practice in how to speak in professional and business contexts such as meetings and conferences. Students learn to prepare, give and evaluate informational, impromptu, and persuasive speeches. Students participate in discussion, refute others’ opinions, express a point of view and ask questions.

Reading and Discussion (500-700)  is a non-academic alternative for students wanting to improve their English proficiency through extensive reading. Reading of articles, short stories and novels promotes greater comprehension and increases active and passive vocabulary. The reading material teaches students about American culture and helps them make connections between the topics and their own lives.

Slang, Listening & Everyday English (600-700)  enables students to better understand American conversation and the media, with an emphasis on informal language. From tapes and videos, students learn several aspects of casual speech including grammar, idioms, and slang.

TOEFL Preparation (600-700)  assists students in maximizing their TOEFL score through taking practice tests and learning strategies for the new integrated iBT test.

 

*For more information about our course levels, see our Level Summaries and our Test Conversion Table to see how WESLI levels align with standard test scores.

 

Business and Professional Skills

You can mix and match WESLI’s English courses to suit your professional goals. There are seven levels at WESLI, 100 – 700. Full-time students will choose four courses in the level in which they are placed. If your goal is to improve your English for your profession, the following courses will help you reach that goal.

Beginning Levels (100-300)

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Communication
  • Grammar

Low Intermediate Level (400)

  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Communication
  • Grammar
  • Pronunciation

High Intermediate Level (500)

  • Communication & Culture (500-700)
  • Grammar
  • Academic Writing
  • Pronunciation (400-700)
  • International Business Essentials

Low Advanced and Professional Skills Level (600)

  • Communication & Culture (500-700)
  • Grammar
  • Academic Reading & Writing
  • Pronunciation (400-700)
  • International Business Essentials
  • Essential Vocabulary

High Advanced and Professional Skills Level (700)

  • Academic & Professional Business
  • Essential Vocabulary
  • Grammar
  • Public Speaking
  • Slang, Listening, & Everyday English

Some courses are not available every session. Please consult the Course Schedule  for a list of current courses.

 

UW Colleges/WESLI Academic Program

WESLI has partnered with the University of Wisconsin College System to offer three- credit college classes at WESLI. This is a great opportunity for WESLI students to earn college credit while still studying at WESLI. These credits can be transferred to UW schools and count towards a student’s general education requirements, no matter what major they choose.

Anthropology 104: Cultural Anthropology

This is a three-credit University of Wisconsin College class. This class is an introduction to the discipline of cultural anthropology, introducing the basic concepts, debates and methods used in the study of societies. The students will learn how culture shapes the economy, religion, family, politics, gender, the nation, and other aspects of society. It is open to all WESLI students who have completed the 600 level academic classes.This class meets three days per week and is supported by a discussion class meeting twice per week.

 

Business 101: Introduction to Business

This is a three-credit University of Wisconsin College class. It is an introduction to the role of business in the American economic system and the global economy, including an overview of the basic functions of business. Students also review career opportunities. It is open to all WESLI students who have completed the 600 level academic classes.This class meets three days per week and is supported by a discussion class meeting twice per week.

 

Part-Time University Classes

WESLI can help you arrange part-time study at a number of universities in Madison. This allows eligible students to obtain university credits before their English studies are completely finished, or to polish their English by experiencing university classes in an area of interest.

 

Some courses are not available every session. Please consult the Course Schedule  for a list of current courses.

 

University Success/Test Prep

You can mix and match WESLI’s English courses to suit your test preparation goals. There are seven levels at WESLI, 100 – 700. Full-time students will choose four courses in the level in which they are placed. Many students come to WESLI with a goal of attending a university or college in the U.S. WESLI’s Academic and TOEFL preparation courses are designed to help you make your dream of entering an American university come true.

 

Prepare to Take the IELTS or TOEFL Exam at WESLI

WESLI’s exam preparation classes are designed to help you succeed on English placement exams. Our teachers are experienced in test preparation and can help you improve your study skills and assess your progress.

 

Only need practice writing? Choose from IELTS or TOEFL Writing to focus your test preparation. Want a more comprehensive review for the exam? Choose IELTS or TOEFL Listening/Reading/Speaking classes to help you prepare.

 

Class Descriptions

TOEFL Writing   assists students in maximizing their TOEFL writing score through taking practice tests and learning strategies for the new integrated iBT test.

 

TOEFL Listening/Reading/Speaking   assists students in maximizing their overall TOEFL test score through taking practice tests, learning test-taking strategies and doing practice exercises that familiarize students with test expectations.

 

IELTS Test Practice   helps students maximize their score on the International English Language Testing System exam.

 

Grading

In each of WESLI’s 7 levels, students will earn a letter grade based on work done in (participation, discussions, etc.) and outside of class (homework, essay writing, etc.).  WESLI’s grading scale looks like this:

 

  • A=93-100%
  • AB=88-92%
  • B=83-87%
  • BC=78-82%
  • C=70-77%
  • D=60-69%
  • F=59 and below

On the first day of class, students will receive a course syllabus in each class, explaining the grading categories and requirements for the course.  Students have access to their grades throughout the session, using an online grading system.