ESL or English? What should I take?
If you are unsure whether to take advanced ESL classes or classes with native English speakers in the English Department, we encourage you to consider the following question: Which of the two lists below is closer to describing you?
- I often or sometimes have trouble expressing myself in English.
- I speak in my native language whenever I can.
- I usually use a translation dictionary when I’m reading in English.
- I started learning English after the age of 17.
- I don’t have experience writing essays or other assignments in English.
- I sometimes use Google Translate or another translation program when I’m writing.
- I still make some/many grammar mistakes when speaking and writing.
- I want to be in a class that addresses my language questions as a nonnative speaker of English.
- I can express most ideas in English about as easily as I can in my native language.
- I speak English much of the time at school, at work, and with friends.
- I can read most books in English without a translation dictionary.
- I started learning English at a young age (before age 12).
- I have experience writing essays and other assignments in English.
- I don’t need to use Google Translate or another translation program when I’m writing.
- I can speak and write in English without many significant grammar errors.
- I’ve studied a lot of ESL and don’t think I will benefit from more.
If List 1 is closer to describing you, you should probably enroll in English as a Second Language (ESL), and if List 2 is closer, you should probably go directly into an English course.