Intensive English Program

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The English Language Institute (ELI) is a full-time intensive English program designed to prepare international students for admission to a U.S. college or university by developing academic, professional and social English language skills.

The institute is located on the campus of North Central College, a four-year comprehensive liberal arts university in Naperville, Illinois.

As a student of the English Language Institute, you will experience:

  • 20 hours per week of classroom instruction
  • Full access to North Central computer, recreational, cultural, and health facilities
  • Free campus Internet access
  • Participation in the International Club, one of the most active clubs on campus
  • Friendship family program
  • Special culture courses and area excursions
  • Convenient housing in campus residence halls with U.S. undergraduate students
  • Daily opportunities to interact with U.S. undergraduate students
  • Walking distance to downtown Naperville and to the commuter train to Chicago

When looking for an intensive English program, it is important to choose the program that best fits your needs.

Why choose the ELI?

High-Quality Classes and Programming

Classes are taught by professional ESL instructors with advanced degrees in teaching English as a second language. As a student in the ELI, you will be immersed in classes that will help you develop the academic and cultural knowledge and skills you need for undergraduate or graduate school in the United States.  

Small, Personalized Classes

In the ELI, most classes have less than 10 students. Having small classes enables our highly trained instructors to get to know you not just as a student, but as a person. We care about your success, and we work to create classes that are challenging and help you meet your academic goals quickly.

Safe, Accessible Location

All ELI classes are held on the North Central College campus in Naperville, Illinois, just 45 kilometers from Chicago, Illinois. Naperville is one of Money Magazine's "Best Places to Live" and has easy access to Chicago O'Hare International Airport. We are also walking distance to the Chicago train station and to downtown Naperville. Students enjoy easy access to the big city while living in a safe, beautiful town.

Academic Excellence

North Central College has a history of excellence in academics. Forbes magazine recognized North Central as one of "America's Top Colleges" and Princeton Review ranked North Central as one of the "Best in the Midwest."

Founded in 1861, the College is committed to developing leaders who are prepared for the global workforce. Similarly, the ELI is dedicated to student success and preparing students to be leaders in the classroom and beyond.

A Pathway into North Central College Undergraduate Degrees

The ELI is an excellent pathway into an undergraduate degree at North Central College. If you apply to your degree program and meet all academic requirements except English language proficiency, you may be eligible for conditional admission. Students in the upper levels of the ELI may also start North Central College classes. This option enables you to adjust to College culture, develop your English, and work your degree at the same time.

Outstanding Staff and Student Services

As an ELI student, you have full access to all North Central services, and there are many ways for you to be part of the campus community. We hope that you take advantage of our library and tutoring services, clubs, gym and recreational facilities, and the health and wellness center.

The staff in the ELI, Center for Global Education, and Admission are all dedicated to your success. We work together to ensure you are able to transition from the ELI into your undergraduate, graduate degree, or next professional stage.

We are also here to help you answer questions and solve problems. We want to help you succeed, and we want your time at North Central to be happy, productive, and memorable.

Are you interested in learning more?

See our Calendar and Costs

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