In addition to the successful International Students Program, IECC offers an intensive, academically oriented program in English as a Second Language (ESL) for international students who wish to study at colleges and universities in the United States but whose English abilities prevent entrance to these schools. ESL is offered at the Wabash Valley College campus in Mt. Carmel. The ESL program enables students to begin academic work quickly, while improving English language abilities, and complete their college studies successfully.
Students who come into IECC with a TOEFL score of 500 or the equivalent will gain admission to academic courses. However, a student with a score of 500 may be required, at the discretion of the ESL instructor, to attend one or more ESL classes. This decision is made on the basis of scores on individual sections of the TOEFL. All students who do not have official scores over 550 will be tested. After assessment of a student's abilities in grammar and writing structure, reading, and listening /speaking skills, they will be placed in one of four levels of ESL. Although the hours are non-transferable, the grades are used by the college to determine whether students may progress in ESL and/or into academic studies. If a student completes level 4, but has not achieved a TOEFL score of 550, the student will be required to take a TOEFL Test Preparation course or repeat elements of Level 4.
ESL - Level 1 Basic
TOEFL score at or below 350. Meets for 16 weeks. Stresses basic vocabulary, spelling, pronunciation, and writing. Academic classes are not allowed; however, with instructor's approval students may enroll in piano, drama, or physical education (sports) courses.
ESL - Level 2 Low-Intermediate
TOEFL score above 350 but at or below 425. Meets for 8 weeks. Designed to increase knowledge, recognition, spelling, writing and pronunciation; improve understanding and respond to short readings; write short paragraphs and develop longer paragraphs; and develop basic conversation patterns in American English. Academic classes are not allowed; however, with instructor's approval students may enroll in piano, drama, or physical education (sports) courses.
ESL - Level 3 High-Intermediate
TOEFL score above 425 but below 475. Designed to increase grammar knowledge, write 300-500+ word essays; listen to short academic lectures and take effective notes; and develop speaking skills. Academic classes are not allowed; however, with instructor's approval students may enroll in piano, drama, or physical education (sports) courses.
ESL - Level 4 Advanced
TOEFL score above 475 but below 550. Students are individually evaluated for concurrent enrollment in ESL and academic coursework based on English language abilities. Academic classes are designed to continue developing academic skills in reading textbook material and writing longer essays; developing advanced grammatical patterns; and enhancing speaking skills through a variety of subjects and exercises.
Computer Lab Instruction
State-of-the-art computer software programs are available, and all students will be assigned to work in the computer lab using these instructional materials. Programs target specific areas such as: verb tenses, sentence structure, idioms, spelling, and vocabulary. In one program, students listen to the computer's audio presentation of phonics and vocabulary, record their own pronunciation, then compare it with the computer. A computer lab technician is available to assist students working in the lab.