CURRICULUM & SCHEDULE
The instructional program at CIES is designed to help students who are seriously interested in learning English. Most students are preparing to enter American universities after completing the CIES program. Some students are learning English to return to their countries and use English in their work. Also, a few CIES students wish to spend time in the United States to improve their language skills and to experience life here.
The curriculum is designed for students who have any level of English competency: from true beginners with zero knowledge of English to students who are nearly ready to begin their university studies in an English-speaking institution. Foundations, Elementary, Intermediate and Advanced (pre-university) levels of English instruction are offered each session. Each level offers 24 hours of classes each week. All new students are given a placement test during Orientation and placed in the appropriate level for each individual English skill. Total emphasis is placed on real learning in small language classes under the guidance of master teachers of English as a second language.
CIES classes are held from 9:00am to 2:50pm Monday through Thursday and 9:00am to 12:30pm on Fridays. Please click here to see a Sample Student Schedule.
Each session at CIES is seven weeks long. You can see the dates of our upcoming sessions on our Course Dates and Fees webpage. In every 7-week session, students take one course from each of the following five skills:
- Grammar in Use: In this class, you will learn how to speak and write, both in groups and individually, using correct grammar.
- Composition: In composition, you will learn to write sentences, paragraphs, and academic essays. This writing will be done both in timed writing and processed writing lessons.
- Reading: In reading, you will learn how to understand reading passages, find the main ideas, infer, summarize, and many other skills.
- Speaking: In this class, you will learn to speak about many topics, from your daily life to academic presentations. You will be helped to express your thoughts in correct grammar and word usage.
- Listening: In listening, you will start by hearing daily conversations and progress to academic topics. You will be asked to find the main ideas of the listening selections, take notes, and respond to them.
There are five academic groups at CIES; each group has two levels, as shown below. Students who successfully meet the learning outcomes for their level during a given session may advance to the next level or group in the next session. Final grades and level changes are assigned at the end of the session for each individual English skill.
Group 0 - Level 0 - Foundations A and B
Group 1 - Levels 1 and 2 - Elementary and High Elementary
Group 2 - Levels 3 and 4 - Advanced Elementary and Low Intermediate
Group 3 - Levels 5 and 6 - Intermediate and High Intermediate
Group 4 - Levels 7 and 8 - Low Advanced and Advanced
Click here for detailed descriptions of the academic groups and levels on the CIES Achievement Scale.
TOEFL and IELTS
Everything we do in the classroom will prepare you to succeed in a university classroom in the United States. At the same time, these same classes will prepare you to take and do well on both the TOEFL and IELTS exams.
In addition, CIES provides free TOEFL and IELTS preparation classes for CIES students. The classes meet twice a week from 3:00 to 4:30 pm throughout the session. We will give you the strategies and study skills needed to prepare for, and successfully navigate, the TOEFL or IELTS test. You will walk in to the test center, confident and positive that you will do well. 95% of the students who complete this course succeed on the test.
CIES provides intensive, one-on-one tutoring for any student that wants extra help in improving his or her English. The tutoring is provided free of charge by students who are working on their Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) Certificate. Tutoring is available after classes (3:00 pm). The length of each tutoring session and how many times a week is arranged between the tutor and tutee.