Shepherd University's Intensive English Language Program (IELP) offers courses in Advanced English as a preparation for university-level studies. These are specifically designed for non-native English language speakers who have diagnosed proficiency equivalent to at least 490 TOEFL or 6.0 IELTS or who have a specific technical language area that needs additional proficiency for university studies. Courses are credit bearing, but do not count toward an academic degree or in the grade point average for the student's degree program.
Each is offered at two levels: basic preparation for undergraduate studies and advanced preparation for graduate studies. The primary difference is that the focus at the pre-graduate level is on research-based written and oral presentation style and methods.
Students in full-time intensive English language study should expect to spend at least 18 hours per week in formal instruction and at least that amount in personal study, homework and preparation. Formal instruction includes required enrollment in all four courses and active involvement in co-curricular programs. These programs are extensions of the classroom and are designed to support whole language development and cultural competence. Co-curricular programs include participation in book club weekly meetings and discussions, participation in weekly conversation groups, involvement in at least one student club or organization, attendance at selected university athletic events, and participation in offered cultural excursions (e.g., trips to Washington, DC, Philadelphia, New York, historical sites, festivals, etc.).
Upon successful completion of the program and oral and written assessments, students will receive a letter attesting to their English language proficiency. This letter also fulfills the English language proficiency requirement for international students desiring admission into Shepherd University for either undergraduate or graduate studies.