English Language Institute (ELI)

NNU's ELI (English Language Institute) Program is designed for English as a second or additional language learners who plan to pursue a degree at Northwest Nazarene University. This program provides academic English preparation courses to develop ESL students' language skills for reading in an academic context, writing research papers and comprehending academic lectures.


Mission Statement:
The mission of the English Language Institute (ELI) at Northwest Nazarene University (NNU) is to provide English-as-second-language speakers with opportunities for improving English language skills for academic work and familiarization with the American university environment. The program develops students' language skills and cultural competence and to prepare them for success in academic courses taught in English.

The ELI Program relies on experienced and professionally trained English instructors who deliver academic English courses. Each course is designed to prepare students for academic study in English by developing their English language skills for reading in an academic context, writing research papers, and comprehending academic lectures. These courses will provide a bridge for success in traditional undergraduate courses.

International degree seeking and exchange students who receive provisional admission to NNU with a score of 78 on the TOEFL (IBT) or a 5.0-6.0 on the IELTS are required to enroll in the English Language Institute Program. Transition from the ELI program to the traditional undergraduate program may occur in one of three ways:

  1. Obtain a score of 79 or above on the TOEFL;
  2. Complete two semesters of the ELI program with a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.5 or above;
  3. Committee decision:  After completing one semester of ELI at NNU, a student may petition to move into the traditional undergraduate program.  The ELI coordinator will establish a committee made up of three faculty members (at least one from the student's intended major area) to review samples of the student's work, written work in English at NNU, and conduct an interview with the student.  The committee may grant the student's  petition and allow the student to enter the traditional program in the absence of 1 and 2 above.

Why choose NNU's ELI program?

Studying at the English Language Institute, you will:

  • Learn English in an academic setting with instructors who understand your language needs
  • Take language courses and traditional undergraduate courses in parallel
  • Interact with American students on campus
  • Study in a safe and supportive environment

ELI Coordinator

Joe Willey

ELI Curriculum

Fall Semester
Fall semester, students will enroll in 2-3* courses of English language study and support courses. Additional credits may be taken in approved courses.  A total of 12 - 18 credits is possible during the fall semester.

Spring Semester
In the spring semester students will enroll in 1-2* English language study courses and up to a total of 18 approved credits. A total of 12 - 18 credits is possible during the spring semester.

With successful completion of these courses, students will have earned credits toward an academic degree.

Semester Courses Descriptions Lower Division Undergraduate Courses
Fall ENGL1061
Academic Language Acquisition I
Course-specific Language Support
Academic Language Use in Writing*
Recommended course options:
ARDE1010, BIBL1100, 
BSNS1110, COMM1210, 
HUMN1010, KINE1000 & 1000L, 
STSK1410, STSK1610
Spring ENGL1062
Academic Language Acquisition II
Academic Language Use in Writing*
Recommended course options:
ARDE1040, BIBL1100,
BSNS1110, BSNS2170,
COMM1210, COMM2030,
HUMN1010, KINE1000 & 1000L, 
STSK1210, STSK1410, STSK1610

*ENGL1071 is offered both in the fall and spring. You only need to take this course during your first semester in ELI.