Graduate Courses



ESL 090: English for International Teaching Assistants

This class is designed for non-native English-speaking graduate assistants who either placed into or were recommended to take the course during ITA Language Screening conducted by the Graduate School.  This course focuses on skills needed for international graduate teaching assistants to be successful in classroom teaching at the university level.   Instruction in the course focuses on improving the communication and pronunciation skills of students with special emphases on listening/speaking skills, presentation skills, negotiation skills, and other classroom management tools such as interactive and pedagogical communication.

Students required to take ESL 090 will be reassessed at the completion of the semester to determine the types of TA duties they may perform. For more information about the International Teaching Assistant Language Screening process, please see:

ESL 093: Academic Speaking/Listening for International Graduate Students

This class is designed to help international students improve their oral and aural skills in a practical environment.  Students’ pronunciation patterns will be assessed at the beginning of the semester and time will be spent developing a sense of American English sounds, rhythms, and intonation patterns.  Other activities include helping students develop effective communication strategies, prepare for and deliver short presentations, and lead group discussions.  More specifically, students in this class will aim to:

  • Enhance their awareness of the sounds, rhythms, and intonation patterns of American English.
  • Improve pronunciation and comprehensibility when speaking English.
  • Develop fluency and confidence in speaking English.
  • Deliver clear and effective academic presentations while incorporating appropriate nonverbal communication strategies.
  • Improve their English listening skills.


ESL 095: Academic Writing for International Graduate Students

This class is designed for international students who are at the beginning stages of their graduate studies in the United States.  Assignments in the class will allow students to investigate writing in their disciplines and then apply what they learn to their own field-specific writing.  Sample assignments include an annotated bibliography, a critical analysis, and a proposal/problem-solution paper.  In this class, students will aim to:

  • Explore what effective writing means in their specific disciplines and become more confident in completing writing assignments required for their departmental courses.
  • Develop grammatical accuracy and stylistic variety through contextualized review of problematic areas of grammar.
  • Increase accuracy and range of academic vocabulary.
  • Become more independent language learners by improving the ability to revise and edit one’s own work.
  • Improve familiarity with American norms of academic honesty, including plagiarism and ways to avoid it.

For questions about any of these classes, please contact:

Angela Garner (, Lecturer, Center for English as a Second Language

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