Chicago’s Go-To for English Language Learners

Have a Question About CSI’s Academic ESL Programs?  

Learning a language is very challenging; there’s no way to sugarcoat it. However, if you’re dedicated to learning a new language, it’s possible with quality instruction. That’s where Computer Systems Institute, or CSI, comes in. We work with English language learners to increase their skill and confidence in speaking, reading, and writing English. Our experienced instructors understand that English as second language programs can be frustrating, especially if your native language is totally unrelated to English, like Arabic or Chinese. In any case, we’re here to help you work through your struggles. Have questions about our academic ESL programs in Chicago? Check for the answer here or contact us today.


I’m a New English Language Learner. Is There a Course for Me?

Of course! CSI offers English as second language programs for people of all skill levels. If you’ve never had English language instruction before, our Beginner ESL course is for you. Students complete the coursework in one year and focus on basic language skills like reading, writing, listening, and speaking. We teach vocabulary useful to talk about ordinary, everyday topics like food, asking for directions, and more to get you comfortable with basic conversation.


Is There a Course for Students Trying to Become Fluent?

Our Advanced ESL course in Chicago is ideal for English language learners who want to work toward fluency. This course spans one year and includes advanced studies in vocabulary, conversation, and English grammar. Our instructors work with students to develop more in-depth conversation skills, and you’ll learn to discuss a wide range of topics. After this course, students are often able to move on to more rigorous academic ESL programs.


How Do I Choose an Academic ESL Program?

The academic ESL program best for you depends on your personal and career goals. You can take personality tests to find out what your aptitudes are, or you can sit down with our Student Affairs department for guidance on which course you should consider. At CSI’s Chicago campus, you can choose from three year-long academic ESL programs that will give you the skills to succeed in English conversation and the job market:
  • General Writing Program: If you loved writing in your native language, why not develop the same skill in English? English language learners enjoy our writing program for its focus on a variety of styles. Our instructors teach the skills necessary to write professional documents and news stories, as well as edit them.
  • Literature Program: This is the academic ESL program for lovers of storytelling. In this course, you’ll improve your English and learn more about American culture through fiction and short stories. Along the way, you’ll become familiar with new vocabulary and learn to express yourself in English.
  • Communication Program: What’s the one thing that nearly all job postings have in common? They all want someone who is an excellent communicator. This academic ESL course offered in Chicago and Boston teaches English as a second language through different manners of communication. Students give presentations, participate in class debates, and sit for interviews. By the end of the year-long course, students find confidence in speaking English in front of others.

Do You Have Courses Focusing on Other Topics?

At CSI, many of our other programs are designed for international students and English language learners. Our Business Career Program, for example, focuses on immersing students in the American business environment and teaches key business concepts. If you’re an English language learner, you aren’t limited to only the designated academic ESL programs at Chicago’s CSI.


I’m Visiting the U.S. Is There an ESL Course for Me?

If you’re only planning on being in the United States for a short period of time for business or leisure, we have ESL courses for you. Our English for Travel program is crafted especially for international tourists and aims to build confidence in speaking English. This course involves field trips, allowing students the unique opportunity to sight-see while learning English. English for Travel courses are not available in Chicago at this time, but both of our Boston locations offer this course.


Can I Apply as an International Student? 

We’re happy to accept applications from non-United States citizens and students coming to Chicago from abroad. However, the application process has a few extra steps for these students. You will need to show that you have the funds or support to pay CSI’s tuition costs, as well as submit a personal statement. You can find more details about the international application process here. If you run into trouble, please reach out to our International Admissions Representatives for help.

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