Intensive English Program (IEP)

The target student population for the IEP includes students who desire admission to an English-speaking institution of higher learning, but who need to develop their English language proficiency in order to successfully enter an academic program delivered in English. These students are most likely to enter the IEP soon after completing their high school diplomas or for students who have already completed a bachelor’s degree and hope to continue their higher education and professional development. Cultural experiences will be embedded in the English language curriculum to also help students acclimate to living and studying in the U.S. Students complete the program when they have demonstrated proficiency at the Advanced level, and may therefore qualify for admission into university degree programs by meeting the language proficiency requirement.

Admissions and completion requirements

Financial requirements: All international students, residential and commuting, must have sufficient funds to pay full university tuition fees, textbooks, living expenses, transportation expenses, health insurance, and other incidental expenses while attending a university in the United States. Documentary evidence of means of financial support must be provided to Brenau for matriculation purposes and issuance of the Form I-20. This evidence is also required by the United States Embassy or Consulate when applying for a student visa to enter this country. 

United States Citizen and Immigration Services: It is the student’s responsibility to know and comply carefully with all non-immigrant visa requirements stated under the United States laws under Section 101 (a) (15) (F) (I) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

Admission

To be admitted to the IEP, applicants must meet all of the following requirements in order to be considered for acceptance: 

  • Be at least 17 years of age 
  • Be willing and available to attend all classes and complete all outside assignments during each course session (24 hours per week for 15 week full-time sessions)
  • Have completed a minimum of a high school education or above (official documentation of high school diploma will need to be submitted). 
  • Provide official school or college/university transcripts (foreign transcripts MUST be officially translated and verified by a reputable evaluation service such as NACES, USCES, or WES) 

Students applying to study in the IEP are not required to submit standardized scores for English Proficiency.

Completion

The IEP prepares students to successfully meet English language proficiency requirements for an undergraduate program at Brenau University. The program does not lead to an official academic credential, but students “graduate” (complete) the IEP program after demonstrating Level 3 proficiency with a minimum average score of 80% on final exams for each skill within the level. Those not meeting the minimum score will be required to repeat the level. Students may repeat a single level up to two times, but they may only repeat any combination of levels up to three times total throughout the program. Students who do not achieve satisfactory progress and do not meet the requirements to advance will be dismissed from the program if remediation efforts are unsuccessful. 

At the conclusion of the IEP, students will complete a standardized proficiency exam such as IELTS or TOEFL to verify that they have met the proficiency requirements for admission to a university degree program.

Method of delivery 

Coursework will be delivered on ground through traditional face-to-face instruction.

Program location

Coursework will be delivered at the Historic Gainesville campus in Gainesville, Georgia.

Curriculum

The IEP provides English language instruction with an academic focus to English Language Learners (ELLs) who intend to seek a post-secondary education in the United States and, in order to do so, need to improve their language proficiency to meet minimum University program admissions criteria. The IEP consists of three levels: Beginner (1), Intermediate (2), and Advanced (3). In each level, three courses are offered over a 13 or 15 week semester to address the four major skills of language proficiency, which include reading, writing, listening, and speaking. Students receive a minimum of 22 hours of in-class instruction per week per level, ultimately completing up to 979 hours of classroom instruction in total, depending on initial placement, thus enabling learners to reach the advanced level of English language proficiency. Out-of-class tutoring provides individualized support for students. In addition to academic English, these students are also provided support in college and cultural transition.

IEP placement 

Upon initial enrollment in the IEP, students are assessed for placement level in each of the four language skills with a multifaceted approach.  Once the score in each skill is assessed, students are placed into the corresponding IEP level based on entering proficiency. Following the first week of class, the ELI director and course instructors review individual student performance to once again verify the student has been placed in the appropriate level. If it is determined that the student was misplaced based on classroom comprehension and production in the language skills, students may be moved to a higher or lower level in order to properly address their proficiency needs.

Description of levels within the IEP

At the beginner level learners can read and understand the meaning of short, simple texts on familiar topics, skim and scan text, and follow the development of ideas. They can write a focused, short, non-academic text on a range of familiar topics with emerging grammatical accuracy of simple structures. They can listen to and understand the main ideas and relevant details of a range of short, simple, slow, non-academic talks and conversations on familiar topics. And they can present (in speaking) on concrete, familiar topics related to their immediate needs while still speaking with some difficulty, with emerging fluency and accuracy.

At the intermediate level, learners can read and understand stated and implied meaning in a wide range of long texts on familiar and unfamiliar topics, infer the author’s attitude and tone, identify arguments, and make conclusions. They can write essays on a wide range of familiar topics with clear, logical development, with adequate grammatical accuracy of simple structures and increased structural complexity. They can listen to and understand the main ideas and supporting details of a range of longer, non-academic texts on various topics, infer speaker intentions of short lectures and discussions, deduce speaker tone and attitude, and determine cause and effect. And they can present (in speaking) about a wide range of concrete, familiar and unfamiliar topics with a defined focus, with emerging grammatical complexity.

At the advanced level, learners can understand subtleties of meaning, author attitude, tone, and intentions, in a wide range of long and complex texts, and can interpret, analyze and evaluate implicit meaning, interpret charts and tables in longer academic text. They can write a research paper on a wide range of familiar and unfamiliar, abstract and specialized topics, with consistent patterns of coherence, and accurate use of sophisticated grammatical structures. They can listen to and understand the main ideas and supporting details of a range of longer, academic lectures and discussions and non-academic talks and conversations on familiar and unfamiliar topics. Learners can infer a speaker’s intentions, deduce the speaker’s tone and attitude, demonstrate active listening, and identify irrelevant information. Learners can also present (in speaking) structured arguments on a wide range of academic topics, express their opinion, form hypotheses, and provide evidence, with high grammatical complexity.

At the conclusion of the advanced level, students will display English language proficiency in the four primary skills of reading, writing, listening, and speaking. As such, they are expected to then meet admissions requirements for matriculation into university degree programs.

Courses in each level of the IEP combine related language skills into reading and writing or listening and speaking. An additional course focused only on grammar is required for each level in order to supplement the instruction students receive in their primary skill courses.

Program outcomes

  1. Demonstrate proficiency when writing on a variety of informal or personal topics
  2. Demonstrate the ability to communicate in writing on a variety of complex academic topics 
  3. Comprehend and interpret a variety of informal or familiar readings 
  4. Comprehend, interpret, and analyze technical and academic texts. 
  5. Understand the main ideas and supporting details of a range of informal or personal talks and conversations on various familiar topics 
  6. Comprehend and analyze the main ideas and supporting details of a range of academic lectures and discussions with limited abstract concepts 
  7. Present on concrete, familiar topics related to their needs and express meaning on familiar, current events related to their areas of interest 
  8. Present structured arguments on a wide range of academic topics and express their opinion, supported with detailed evidence, form hypotheses, and take perspectives of others when presenting counter arguments 
  9. Demonstrate accuracy and adequate complexity with simple, compound, complex, and compound-complex grammatical structures 
  10. Demonstrate English language proficiency equivalent to or above University admissions criteria

Learning outcomes by level

  1. Understand the meaning of short, simple descriptive, narrative and process texts on familiar topics
  2. Write a connected, topic-focused text on a range of familiar topics with emerging logical development of main ideas supported with relevant details
  3. Understand the main ideas and supporting details of a range of short non-academic talks and conversations on various familiar topics
  4. Present on concrete, familiar topics related to their needs and express meaning on familiar, current events related to their areas of interest
  5. Demonstrate grammatical accuracy with simple sentence structures
  1. Understand essential meaning, implicit attitudes and author opinion in a wide range of long descriptive, narrative, and opinion texts on familiar and unfamiliar topics
  2. Write essays on a wide range of familiar topics with clear, logical development of main ideas and supporting details
  3. Understand the main ideas and supporting details of a range of longer, non-academic texts on various familiar and unfamiliar topics
  4. Present about a wide range of concrete, familiar and unfamiliar topics with a defined focus, and express their opinion, and give reason(s), on a wide range of familiar and unfamiliar, current events
  5. Demonstrate adequate accuracy and increased complexity with compound and complex grammatical structures
  1. Understand subtleties of meaning, implicit attitudes, and author opinion in a wide range of long, complex, and specialized texts on familiar and unfamiliar, social, professional, and academic topics
  2. Write a research paper on a wide range of familiar or unfamiliar, abstract and specialized topics using complex language structures by synthesizing information and viewpoints from multiple sources.
  3. Understand the main ideas and supporting details of a range of longer, academic lectures and discussions and non-academic talks and conversations on familiar and unfamiliar topics with limited abstract concepts
  4. Present structured arguments on a wide range of academic topics as well as abstract ones when the latter are pertaining to their areas of interest and field of specialty and express their opinion, supported with detailed evidence, form hypotheses, and take perspectives of others when presenting counter arguments
  5. Demonstrate accuracy and adequate complexity with compound, complex, and compound-complex grammatical structures

2023 Session dates

  • Session 1: Jan. 30 – May 12 (15 week term, 22 hours of instruction per week)
  • Session 2: May 22 – Aug. 18 (13 week term, 24 hours of instruction per week)
  • Session 3: Aug. 28 – Dec. 15 (15 week term, 22 hours of instruction per week)