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English Language Studies

The English Language Studies (ELS) curriculum is designed for non-native English speakers to foster effective communication in a variety of academic and professional contexts and facilitate their studies at MIT and their work beyond. Any bilingual/ESL undergraduate or graduate student earning a degree at MIT can register for an ELS subject.

The ELS program is a regular academic program and is open only to matriculated MIT students. Our grade- and credit-bearing classes meet according to the MIT academic calendar and involve homework and exams.

To see the dates and times of this semester’s ELS offerings, see the MIT subject catalog.

  • Director: Eric Grunwald (egrunwal@mit.edu)
  • Lecturer: AC Kemp (ackemp@mit.edu)
  • Adjunct Lecturer: Olivia Szabo (oliviasz@mit.edu)
  • Adjunct Lecturer: Irene Maksymjuk (imaksym@mit.edu)

Concentration in ESL

As part of the HASS Requirement, all undergraduates must complete a HASS Concentration of three or four subjects, depending on the program and level of entry.  An undergraduate concentration consists of any three subjects in English Language Studies or related fields. The Concentration Advisor for ELS is Eric Grunwald.

English Evaluation Test (EET)

The English Evaluation Test is offered prior to the start of each semester and is a requirement for all incoming international graduate students. International students who are starting their graduate programs in Fall 2022 should take the EET in August 2022, before the fall semester starts.

The fall (August) 2022 EET will be delivered remotely again this year. We had hoped and planned to hold it in person as we traditionally have, but as there still have been over 100 new cases of COVID per week on campus and as the two (three?) new variants of omicron are more contagious and expected to cause surges, bringing some 250 students, most of you just off of a plane, into a single auditorium where masks are not required seems unwise, to say the least. The test will be administered from a Canvas site, https://canvas.mit.edu/courses/14648, and a welcome video there explains the what, why, and how of the test.

The new dates of the test are as follows:

  • A reading and writing task (~1-2 hours), active on the Canvas site from Thursday, August 25, to Sunday, August 28th, 2022 (11:59 p.m. EST).
  • A short, 10-minute interview conducted via Zoom between Monday, August 29th and Wednesday, August 31st, 2022. You can sign up on the site August 1st – 28th (sign-ups not active yet).

For details about the Fall 2022 EET, please go to the Canvas site listed above. General information about the EET can be found here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Wondering why MIT students would need English classes if they’ve “passed” the TOEFL or IELTS? Want to know how our classes differ from ESL classes elsewhere? See our FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions) for the answers to these and other questions.