Study English, meet people from cultures around the globe, and experience the global metropolis of Chicago at the city’s only tech-focused university through its Intensive English Program. Our program is designed to meet the personal, professional, and academic goals of international students while incorporating activities and projects. The Intensive English Program allows you to become immersed in American culture as you perfect your skills in English reading, writing, listening, speaking, and grammar.
- Worried about your current English proficiency? We’ve got you covered. The Intensive English Program has four* levels (from high-beginner to advanced); when you arrive at Illinois Tech, you’ll take a placement exam to determine where you’ll start. At level four, if you choose to apply to a degree program at Illinois Tech, we can work with you to provide assistance with the application process.
*Please note: Levels we are able to offer depend on enrollment. All levels may not be offered each term.
- Each of the four levels takes 12 weeks to complete; you’ll complete one level per semester, with options to begin in January, May, or August. Be prepared to spend 18 hours per week in the course, with time built into your schedule for supplemental courses including American Culture and Pronunciation.
Download the English Language Services Brochure
To be admitted to the program, students must have:
- The equivalent of a high school diploma; a transcript or mark sheet must be provided as evidence
- At least two years of formal English study, although more is recommended as our program is not intended for beginners
- An additional video interview might be required to confirm you meet minimum requirements for admission
- As part of the application submission process, you/applicants will be required to write an original essay of one to three paragraphs
- An additional writing sample might be required to confirm you meet minimum requirements for admission
English Level Required for Admission
In order to be accepted to our Level 1, you need to be able to hold a short informal conversation, follow and understand short listening excerpts that include some lower-level academic vocabulary, understand multi-paragraph readings that include some lower-level academic vocabulary, and write several connected sentences on basic topics. Please note: Level 1 is intended for students considered mid- to high-A2 on the CEFR level.
- Complete and submit an application to the Intensive English Program.
- You will be asked to write a short essay of one to three paragraphs (no shorter than 5 sentences).
- You must write the essay yourself.
- Do not use tools or applications to help you write or translate.
- Do not copy and paste from the Internet or other sources.
- Do not have family, friends, agents, or other people write the essay for you or assist you in writing it.
- Upon arrival, you will be given a writing test to verify your writing level.
- You will be asked to write a short essay of one to three paragraphs (no shorter than 5 sentences).
- Submit the following documents through the online application:
- Copy of passport
- Official transcripts or certified copies of the marks or grades of courses completed from all institutions attended including high school, college, university, or vocational school as well as any examination scores. Scanned copies will be accepted through the application, but original documents may be requested in order to complete the application. If required, original documents must be official and sealed
- Bank statement showing enough money to pay for the anticipated number of semesters you will attend. This can be scanned first, but the original document must be sent by mail if requested
- Illinois Tech English Language Services' Financial Affidavit of Support for F-1 or J-1 students to demonstrate that you or your sponsor have available finances to meet the educational and living expenses while you are a student at Illinois Tech
- If you're bringing a spouse or dependent, please download the dependent request form and submit the completed form to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Optional—Copy of the English proficiency TOEFL or IELTS score report. The TOEFL code to send your scores to Illinois Tech is 1318
- Please note: Students will be given an English assessment upon arrival to determine their English level in listening, reading, speaking, and writing. An English Language Proficiency Assessment score such as TOEFL or IELTS may be submitted prior to arrival to help determine your level, but it is not required nor does it determine IEP placement level
English Language Services accepts applications year-round for the Intensive English Program; however, there is an application deadline related to the timeframe of visa issuance.
Arrival, orientation, and placement exam dates are mandatory. You MUST plan your travel to arrive on time. If you arrive earlier, you will have to plan your own housing accommodations until housing is available. If you will be late, please inform us immediately; in most cases, we will ask you to defer coming until the next semester.
Summer 2023 Important Dates
Application Deadline: March 30, 2023
Arrival Date(s): May 14, 2023
New Student Orientation: May 15-16, 2023
Continuing Student Orientation: May 16, 2023
Program Course Dates: May 15 - August 4, 2023
Breaks (no classes): none
End-of-Semester Conferences: August 8, 2023
Fall 2023 Important Dates
Application Deadline: June 30, 2023
Arrival Date(s): August 12-13, 2023
New Student Orientation: August 14-18, 2023
Continuing Student Orientation: August 18, 2023
Program Course Dates: August 21 - December 1, 2023
Breaks (no classes): October 9-13 and November 20-24, 2023
End-of-Semester Conferences: December 5, 2023
Example Weekly Schedule
This is an example schedule and will vary depending on students' individual levels. IEP courses may be scheduled Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The schedule is based on the availability of university classrooms.
|10:00–11:15||Possible Time for Elective Course||Grammar||Reading and Writing||Grammar||Reading and Writing|
|13:50–15:05||Listening and Speaking||Listening and Speaking||Possible Time for Elective Course|
English Language Services students, whether they attend full or part time, are part of the university and therefore pay all fees associated with the university in addition to ELS tuition. When applying to the IEP, students need to submit the Illinois Tech English Language Services' Financial Affidavit of Support for F-1 or J-1 students to demonstrate that they or their sponsor have available finances to meet the educational and living expenses while studying at Illinois Tech.
Admitted IEP students must pay a $100 nonrefundable Application Processing Fee to cover application processing, document evaluation, processing and shipment of the I-20 (internationally or domestically), and placement exam reservation. This fee applies to both newly admitted students and students who have deferred their admission to a future semester. Payment of the fee must be received prior to creating an I-20.
Full-Time Student Tuition
The full-time student tuition includes enrollment in Listening/Speaking, Reading/Writing, Grammar, and Culture or an elective. Students will be charged $672 for additional IEP elective courses. Note that students beginning in fall are charged for the full year of health insurance and must request a refund if they do not plan to continue.
|Full-Time Student Tuition||$4,920|
|*Fees (Student Activity and Service—Fall and Spring Only)||$1,030|
|Health Insurance (web.iit.edu/shwc/insurance)||$1,221|
|Room and Board (Housing and Meal Plan)||$8,264|
If any dependents (i.e. your spouse or child) will be accompanying you to the United States, they must apply for an F-2 visa. In order for Illinois Tech to issue your dependent an I-20, you must demonstrate at least an additional $4,500 per year or $375 per month for your spouse and $3,000 per year or $250 per month for each child that will accompany you to the United States.
*These figures are only estimates. Visit the Student Accounting Office website for specifics about activity fees, health insurance, and other ancillary fees. Fees are not charged during the summer term.
Part-Time Student Tuition
The part-time student course rate is $274 per billing hour.
|Course||Billing Hour||Course Cost|
|IEP Listening/Speaking or Reading/Writing Courses||6||$1,644|
|IEP Grammar, Culture, or Elective Courses||3||$822|
- English Language Services will issue an Campus-Wide Identification number (CWID or A-number) for the student once all documents have been received and verified. This is the student’s official ID number for the university.
- English Language Services will make a decision based on your application.
- You will receive an email within two weeks stating whether or not you have been accepted.
- If accepted for the IEP, you must also pay the $100 nonrefundable Application Processing Fee.
- The Application Processing Fee covers application processing, document evaluation, processing and shipment of the I-20 (internationally or domestically), and placement exam reservation. Payment of the fee must be received prior to creating an I-20.
- English Conditional Students: This fee is not required for conditionally admitted students.
- Deferrals: Students who defer more than once will need to pay the fee again before being issued a third I-20.
- After you have paid the Application Processing Fee, English Language Services will request the I-20 that you use to apply for an F-1 student visa. Creating the I-20 may take up to four weeks after the student is accepted. You will receive an email notification once your I-20 has been processed so that you can begin scheduling your visa interview.
- An email will be sent to you with the following:
- Letter of Acceptance detailing the program, important dates for arrival, and further instructions
It usually takes 5–7 business days for a student to receive their I-20.
For more information on Illinois Tech's Intensive English courses, please see below and visit the university bulletin.
Level 1: Introduction (CEFR A1–A2)
This level accommodates high-beginners by introducing them to English and the United States classroom. They receive instruction and practice focused on the basic survival skills for urban and university settings. Students who complete this level will be able to recognize and function in basic societal and academic nuances.
Level 1 Listening and Speaking will enable students to understand main ideas and key details from a listening text and engage in a basic conversational exchange or discussion with language for repetition and clarification.
Level 1 Reading and Writing will enable students to identify main ideas and supporting details and apply context clues to a reading passage, as well as to write a variety of sentences and a basic paragraph with organization and support.
Level 1 Grammar will enable students to apply present and past tenses to share information about themselves and past experiences, as well as accurately use structures such as modals of permission and request.
Level 2: Skill Development (CEFR A2+–B1)
This level provides further instruction and practice to low-intermediate students in order to develop language skills to help students integrate into the U.S. and university life. By the end of this level, students will be able to participate with others with minor miscommunications.
Level 2 Listening and Speaking will enable students to identify main points, key information, and relationships between ideas in a lecture or discussion, as well as participate in small group discussions about plans, problems, and options. Students will also be able to give a short, organized presentation with visual aids.
Level 2 Reading and Writing will enable students to read and organize information, make inferences and identify the author’s purpose, and use a variety of sentence structures to write a cohesive, multi-paragraph response to a prompt.
Level 2 Grammar will enable students to use present, past, future, and perfect tenses to ask a variety of questions and provide information, as well as modals of ability and expectation.
Level 3: Proficiency and Confidence (CEFR B1+–B2)
At this level, high-intermediate students begin to advance their proficiency by building confidence in completing academic tasks in English. Students will be proficient enough in English to maneuver a university campus with little difficulty. In this level, instructors and advisors will work with students to apply to a program at Illinois Tech. Students who pass and move on to an undergraduate or graduate program will be assessed and recommended or required to take a supplemental English course while studying their major.
Level 3 Listening and Speaking will enable students to take notes and respond to questions about information from—and purpose of—various listening materials. Students will also be able to give a 12-15 minute group presentation and participate in a group discussion in which they express and support their opinions and respond to questions.
Level 3 Reading and Writing will enable students to annotate and respond to questions about reading passages, write a summary of—and a response to—a reading, and write a structured academic paper with citations.
Level 3 Grammar will enable students to use present and past perfect tenses in combination with other tenses to describe important events and situations. Students will also be able to use the passive voice and both real and unreal conditionals.
Level 4: Fluency in English Environments (CEFR B2+–C1)
This level accommodates advanced students needing to refine their English language abilities. Students will be successful in a wide range of English speaking environments. In this level, instructors and advisers will work with students to apply to a program at Illinois Tech.
Level 4 Listening and Speaking will enable students to take notes on—and respond to—questions about a listening text, synthesize information from related listening texts, give an academic presentation based on research, and participate in an agenda-driven discussion.
Level 4 Reading and Writing will enable students to analyze and synthesize articles, write timed paragraph responses to reading-based questions, and craft an APA style academic paper.
Level 4 Grammar will enable students to analyze their speech and writing for accurate use of target structures, and to effectively use a variety of clauses to describe complex relationships between ideas and events.
For basic information on conditional admission to undergraduate programs based on English proficiency, please visit the Conditional English Students page.
Do I need to apply for an English language school myself, or will Illinois Tech automatically send my information to them?
We highly encourage students to attend the Intensive English Program (IEP) at Illinois Institute of Technology. If you are admitted with the English condition, you will automatically be admitted to the Intensive English Program (IEP) at Illinois Tech. It is a terrific program that prepares you academically for our university, and it creates a more direct path to degree and certificate programs at Illinois Tech.
How long will it take for me to complete my language program?
When you arrive at Illinois Tech for the Intensive English Program (IEP), you will take a placement exam to determine your level. There are four levels of the IEP that you could place into. Each level takes a semester to complete. The amount of time it takes to complete your language program will depend on your starting level of English proficiency. You could be required to take as little as one semester or as many as four semesters. For a high intermediate student, the average time frame is two semesters. Please note that if you do not choose the Intensive English Program (IEP) at Illinois Tech, which is on the same semester time frame, you will have to pay close attention in enrolling at Illinois Tech in the subsequent semester.
How long is my conditional admission valid?
Your conditional admission is valid for two consecutive academic years if you choose to attend the Intensive English Program (IEP) at Illinois Tech.
Who will issue my I-20?
If you choose to attend the Intensive English Program (IEP) at Illinois Tech, you will receive an I-20 from our university specifically for the IEP. After you have completed the IEP, Illinois Tech will update your immigration record to the certificate or degree program to which you were conditionally admitted to.
Can I take courses in my desired major at Illinois Tech while I complete my English courses?
Students who are enrolled full-time in the IEP (on an F-1 student visa) cannot take major courses at Illinois Tech or any courses outside of the IEP. However, students who are enrolled in a degree-seeking program may opt to take part-time IEP courses while studying for a degree.
Do I need to pay the application processing fee?
Conditionally admitted students are not required to pay the Application Processing Fee.
I want to accept Illinois Tech’s conditional offer. What should I do now?
Because you will be automatically admitted to the Intensive English Program (IEP) per your conditional admission, you will begin receiving communication from English Language Services at Illinois Tech. To accept your admission offer to the Intensive English Program (IEP) at Illinois Tech, please follow the instructions you receive in that correspondence. You may also contact email@example.com for more information.
What do I do once I complete my English program?
If you choose to attend the Intensive English Program (IEP) at Illinois Tech, you will work with English Language Services and admissions to progress to your degree or certificate program of study.
When do I submit my deposit to Illinois Tech?
If you choose to attend the Intensive English Program (IEP) at Illinois Tech, you will receive communication about accepting the offer. Submission of your deposit is due at the time of entering undergraduate study upon completion of the IEP.
1. Fill out the intent to enroll form in your application tracker.
Please check the program calendar to ensure you are able to arrive before the orientation date and stay until the end of classes. If you cannot attend the orientation or need to leave before classes end, you will be advised to defer (wait) until the next semester.
If you are not able to attend and want to defer (wait) until the next semester, please select "I do not plan to attend Illinois Tech" in the Intent to Enroll form, then select "Yes" under "Would you like to defer?" and select the term you would like to defer to.
2. Pay the $100 nonrefundable application processing fee.
Admitted IEP students must pay a $100 nonrefundable Application Processing Fee to cover application processing, document evaluation, processing and shipment of the I-20 (internationally or domestically), and placement exam reservation. This fee applies to both newly admitted students and students who have deferred their admission more than once to a future semester. Payment of the fee must be received prior to creating an I-20.
*The application processing fee is waived for conditionally admitted undergraduate students. For more information about conditional English admission, please visit the Undergraduate Admission Conditional English Admission page.
*Students who defer more than once will need to pay the fee again before being issued a third I-20.
3. Apply for a visa.
Click here for a detailed explanation of the I-20 process.
- If you're bringing a spouse or dependent, please download the dependent request form and submit the completed form to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Pay SEVIS Fee—The United States Department of Homeland Security has implemented a one-time SEVIS Fee for all F-1 and J-1 visa applicants. Please check Illinois Tech's International Center website for details.
- Contact the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate to schedule a visa appointment. To find the nearest embassy, please the U.S. embassy database website.
4. Sign on/access MyIIT account.
Please sign on to the myIIT portal (http://my.iit.edu), which allows for single sign-on convenience for announcements and Illinois Tech Hawk email as well as the Blackboard Learning System by using the following credentials:
Initial Password: MMDDXXXX
If your name is incorrectly spelled, your username incorrectly spelled, or you have trouble logging into myIIT, please explain by email to email@example.com (include firstname.lastname@example.org for help) with your name, CWID (A#), and current username.
MM is the two-digit month you were born, DD is the two-digit date you were born, and XXXX is the last four digits of your CWID/A# as listed above. Once you sign in, you will be asked to create a new password, and you will be required to create security questions. Please remember your log-on.
5. Gather immunization documents.
According to Illinois Tech's policy and Illinois state law, you must provide proof of immunization. View immunization requirements and download the Immunization Record Form, which needs to be completed and signed by a doctor accompanied with your medical record. If you have questions about immunizations, email email@example.com (include firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance).
6. Check student email daily.
Access your Illinois Tech Hawk email by clicking on the Google Apps for Students icon at the top of the screen once logged in to myIIT. All email communication going forward will be through your Illinois Tech Hawk email. It is important that you check your Illinois Tech Hawk email daily—at minimum—for Illinois Tech communication.
7. Make your housing reservation.
Room and board is available on-campus at an extra cost; you can reserve a room MyRoom. You will use your username and password to log in. Please fill out a contract if you would like to live on-campus. If you wish to live off-campus or would like a home-stay, you should make arrangements yourself; Illinois Tech does not help find off-campus housing.
8. Book flight reservation.
Book your flight to Chicago after your visa has been approved. You may fly into O'Hare International Airport (ORD) or Chicago Midway International Airport (MDW). Visit flychicago.com for more information about the airport. There is not a set arrival time or transportation pick-up.
9. Email flight itinerary.
Once you have your flight booked, please email your itinerary to email@example.com from your Illinois Tech Hawk email account.
10. Join us on social media.
Follow our IEP on social media: Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Weibo
11. Arrive for orientation.
Arrival, orientation, and placement exam dates are mandatory. You must plan your travel to arrive on time. Please check the program calendar to ensure that you will arrive in time to attend the orientation. If you arrive earlier, you will have to plan your own housing accomodations until housing is available. If you will be late, please inform us immediately; in most cases, we will ask you to defer coming until the next semester. During the orientation, we will help get you started at Illinois Tech with the following:
- Welcome to the university
- Assessment and placement
- Registration for courses
- Expectations of a student
- Explanation of visa status
- Explanation of health insurance
- Explanation of housing and meals
- Introduction to cultural differences
- Navigating Chicago