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English as a Second Language (ESL) Program

Placement into English as a Second Language (ESL) - Entering students whose native language is other than English, whose performance on the CAT-W Writing Exam is designated ESL by CUNY-wide readers, are referred to the ESL Placement Committee for evaluation and placement. Depending on their original placement level and progress, ESL students take a sequence of courses to complete the requirements for the A.A. or A.S. degree. The number of credits will depend on their original level of placement and progress.

Content-Based Program of ESL Instruction

A new program of ESL instruction was phased in, starting Fall 2003. The ESL program of study integrates content area to develop both English language skills and a body of interdisciplinary content and discourse information necessary for students to navigate academic courses and University requirements.

The ESL sequence of courses is:

  • ESL 15 ESL in the Content Areas I and Co-requisite: ESL 16
  • ESL 25 ESL in the Content Areas II and Co-requisites: ESL 26 or ESL 27
  • ESL 35 ESL in the Content Areas III and Co-requisites: ESL 36 or ESL 37

After completing the ESL sequence, students may take the CUNY reading and writing skills test and, if passed, may proceed to ENG 110 Expository Writing. If not passed, they must take ESL 91 (formerly ENG 1300) Basic Composition, and/or ESL 92 (formerly ENG 1396) Foundations of Critical Reading, and be retested.

College Language Policy

The College offers a transitional ESL Program designed to foster the movement from native language to English:

  • Students in the beginning level (ESL 15) must take ONE content course in English.
  • Students at the intermediate level (ESL 25) must take TWO content courses in English.
  • Students at the advanced level (ESL 35) must take ALL* their content courses in English.

Once students enter Basic Composition ESL 91 (formerly ENG 1300) they must take ALL* of their content courses in English

*Students would be permitted to take Spanish and courses in other languages to fulfill foreign language and literature requirements.