English Language Academy FAQs

Why should I choose the English Language Academy (ELA) for my child?

The ELA offers an intensive and rigorous language program for students who are serious about pursuing an academic degree at an American college or university. Classes are small, no more than 20 students per class; and teachers are dedicated to helping students achieve their academic and personal goals.

What type of classes does the ELA offer?

ELA offers classes in reading and writing, listening and speaking, and TOEFL preparation.

Describe the school system in the U.S.

The American system of study is based on the “holistic” method. This means both the classroom environment and the outside home environment contribute to a student’s success in acquiring a language. ELA students, like American students, spend the majority of their time practicing the language through class discussion, in-class projects, and homework. Tests are given to measure progress, and are only a small part of the “holistic” approach to learning.

How are students placed in classes?

  • Level 2: TOEFL score 28-43.1
  • Level 3: TOEFL score 43.2-56.4
  • Level 4: TOEFL score 56.5-68.3
  • Level 5: TOEFL score 68.4-80.3
  • Level 6: TOEFL score 80.4 and higher

How long does it take for a student at the ELA to enter the University of San Diego?

The University of San Diego is a competitive university with a prestigious reputation in the United States. Students wishing to enter the university must have a TOEFL score of 80. Typically, a student at the ELA can expect to make 10-15 point gain, per semester (14 weeks), on their TOEFL test. Individual results will vary.

Is there a way to get into other colleges in San Diego without the TOEFL test?

Yes. Students who have reached the Intermediate level of English proficiency can go to one of several excellent community colleges in San Diego. (View the link to the community college system at www.CommunityCollegesUSA.com. Community colleges use an internal test to place students in English classes. Students can take any number of courses approved by USD to satisfy both the General Education and English proficiency requirements.

Are community colleges good schools?

California offers some of the best community colleges in the country. The community college system is especially important for students who are learning English because it offers a wide variety of courses which prepare students for rigorous university environment.

What is the best way to improve the TOEFL score?

  • Attend all classes.
  • Complete all homework.
  • Read, read, read. Newspapers, magazines, and books are excellent sources for building vocabulary.
  • Live with an American host family.
  • Socialize with friends from other countries.