DePaul University International Admission > Resources > ELA > Intensive English Program (IEP)

Intensive English Program (IEP)

The Intensive English Program (IEP) offers five levels of academic English. New students receive a thorough English proficiency evaluation to ensure proper level assignment. Students entering the Intensive English Program should have at least low-intermediate English skills. Classes for this program meet for 18 hours each week.

Five Levels of Proficiency

  1. Foundations Level (the most beginning level*)
  2. Intermediate Level
  3. High Intermediate Level
  4. Advanced Level
  5. University Bridge Level (the most advanced level)

*Please Note: Our Foundations Level (beginning) classes are for students who have studied some English. Before they begin our classes, these students can use or understand 200 to 400 words in English.

Continuing English Language Academy (ELA) students who pass their classes move to the next higher level of course work in the following term.

Courses Offered at Each Level

Full-time students take all four courses:

  1. Writing
  2. Reading and Vocabulary Development
  3. Grammar
  4. Spoken English and Listening

Class Schedule

All ELA courses are held during the day. Classes meet for 18 hours each week, from 9 a.m. until 2:45 p.m., with a later start time on Monday mornings and an earlier end time on Wednesday and Friday afternoons.

Here is an example of a class schedule for ELA students at all levels, Foundations through University Bridge: 

Class Schedule
Writing Tuesday, Thursday, Friday: 9 - 10:30 a.m.
Reading Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday: 10:45 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.
Grammar Monday, Thursday: 10:45 - 12:15 p.m.
Wednesday: 9 - 10:30 a.m.
Spoken English and Listening
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday: 1:15 - 2:45 p.m.

IEP Placement Exams

New students take placement exams, which are administered at the beginning of each term, to determine their proficiency level. Currently, these exams include a 35-minute writing sample, similar to the TOEFL iBT independent-task essay and an Institutional (paper-based) TOEFL test, which has sections on listening comprehension, structure and written expression, and reading.

In some cases, new student placement is adjusted on the basis of additional diagnostic testing given during the first week of the term.

Level Typical TOEFL range
Foundations 390-430
Intermediate 430-460
High Intermediate 460-500
Advanced 500-540
University Bridge 540 or higher