English for Speakers of Other Languages

The English Department recognizes that the needs of non-native speakers of English are different from the needs of native speakers. In order to meet the needs of non-native speakers of English better, the English department offers special English 1010 and 1020 courses aimed at students for whom English is a second language (ESL).

Students whose first language is not English must take a diagnostic test to place them in the right English class. ESL students who are not ready for ENGL 1010 will be required to take ENGL 1008 before enrolling in ENGL 1010. Students who have not taken (and passed) the placement test will not be permitted to enroll in 1010 until they have either passed English 1008 or passed 1009K. Non-native speakers of English entering Fall 2006 or later, with ACT scores below 18 should contact the English Lower Division office ( 898-2579) for information on an alternate placement test that may track them into a special English 1009-1010 course for ESL students.

ESL 1010 and 1020 classes cover the same material and fulfill the same requirements as the regular English 1010 and 1020 classes, but they do so with an emphasis on the special linguistic needs of the ESL student. Assignments will help students strengthen their command of idiomatic English, and the readings and discussions will address some of the specific problems that international students have when first attending an American university. They are listed on transcripts like any other 1010 class. Only ESL students who have passed the placement exam or completed English 1040 may enroll in English 1010 for ESL.

English 1009-1010 for ESL will be offered for the first time in the 2006-07 Academic Year. It is a course for students whose native language is not English, who have taken the ACT and have been found to have deficiencies. Students are identified for this course if they self-identify as non-native speakers of English or if their COMPASS test result show problems characteristic of ESL students. If you think you should be in an ESL 1009 class, you should contact the English Lower Division office ( 898-2579) for information about testing.

English 1008 will earn 4 hours of college credit but will not fulfill the general studies requirement. It is designed to help students with academic English writing and should be taken during an international student's first semester at MTSU. Typically, we offer English 1008 concurrently with selected 1010 classes. In this way, the 1008 students will have the stimulation of working with 1010 students and, if they are able, may catch up with their 1010 classmates and transfer to a 1010 class at any point during the semester. The 1080 curriculum will include one hour at the Writing Center. (Note: English 1008 is the same as English 1040 and 104 in earlier catalogs. The numbers have been changed, but not the course content.)

Important: Enrollment in all lower-division classes is limited. Students who do not register before the first day of classes may find that the ESL classes above have no more room for them.

If a student places in English 1008 but there is no room in any 1008 class, the student may, with the department's permission, enroll in the ESL 1009-1010 course. Enrolling in this course will mean commitment to complete the 1009-1010 sequence with the same class.

Students who want to register before they have taken the placement exam must register for English 1008. After testing, students who are ready may enroll in English 1010. If you have any questions about the placement exam, please call the English Department at (615) 898-2579 or contact Dr. Casal via e-mail (ecasal@mtsu.edu).

Other Help for ESL Students

All students at MTSU can get help from the Writing Center. The University Writing Center, in PH 325-6, offers workshops and special tutoring to any MTSU student who needs it.

Students interested in non-credit ESL courses should contact Continuing Studies which sometimes offers non-credit ESL courses as a service to the community.

Links outside MTSU that ESL students might find useful:

The 24 hour ESL Help Center
Badke's Writing Research Papers in North America

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