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English Language Skills Enhancement

ELSE Picture


English Language Skills Enhancement (ELSE) is a program designed for current and newly admitted WFU professional and graduate students who seek to enhance their spoken and written language abilities in order to better prepare for the academic, social and professional expectations of Wake Forest University.

Enhanced Academic Experience

We understand that complete social, cultural and linguistic immersion in a classroom setting in another country can be difficult. We developed this program with the goal of facilitating non-native English speaking students’ acclimation to the cultural differences of a U.S. classroom. The program focuses on enhancing speaking, listening, pronunciation, reading and writing skills, while improving cross-cultural communication skills. The course will help participants develop discipline-specific academic English, including vocabulary, syntax, and rhetorical patterns used in graduate programs across Wake Forest University.

The ELSE Program does not grant academic credit.

Integrated Social Experience

It’s not all intensive practice, we’ve also built in social activities to help you build vocabulary and confidence in social settings. In addition to enhancing formal academic and professional language skills, participants will be given opportunities to engage with members of both the Wake Forest and greater Winston-Salem community. The program will offer planned social activities and excursions to local tourist areas, local historic landmarks and points of interest during which participants can practice their English in relaxed and comfortable social settings. Featured excursions have included tours of Old Salem, the International Civil Rights Museum, Reynolda House Museum of American Art, a Winston-Salem Dash baseball game, and a tour of the eclectic art galleries located in downtown Winston-Salem.

Goals and Objectives

Through this program, you will get a comprehensive head start with understanding the rigorous academic, social, and professional requirements at Wake Forest. In addition, you will also have the advantage of settling in to your new surroundings early and the opportunity to meet new friends.

Reviews from ELSE Participants:

“Before I joined this EAS (now ELSE) program, I always tried my best to improve my English, however I didn’t improve that much. I tried to study with a study group on Internet. I tried to follow the dialogue of TV shows to improve pronunciation. I tried to meet language partner and found one for one semester. I tried many, many methods to improve, however it didn’t work as well as this program. I am not exaggerating . I just want to express how important it is that having an adjusting period before you start your real academic school years in the U.S. Thanks ELSE program, Thanks Wake Forest!” – Shuai Shao ELSE ’11, LLM ’12

“The ELSE is a program worth taking. You can get a good taste of studying law in the US ahead of time with the help of a JD teaching assistant, and everyone has a chance to discuss topics in groups to practice oral English.”  Ying Cao,  ELSE ’13, LLM ’14

For more information and to apply:

Program Dates | Cost of Program | How to Enroll | ELSE Contact Information