Welcome to the English Intensive Program at the University of Ottawa!

Learning English can open many doors for future studies, employment, and even friendships. Each year, we teach more than 1000 students from over 35 countries to improve their English skills.

Our program is offered three times a year (fall, winter, spring). Our courses, ranging from beginner to advanced levels, focus on developing each student’s listening, reading, speaking, and writing skills. Our program also includes enriching weekly socio-cultural activities to promote Canadian culture and for students to socialize with classmates. These activities include bowling, go-karting, hiking in Gatineau Park, museum visits, and more. We hope to see you during our next session!



Program Details

Course Goals

During each of the three sessions, our English Intensive Program courses focus on communication and study skills in an academic environment, language for specific purposes, cultural awareness and social interaction.

Course Content

  • Course levels range from beginner to advanced.
  • Classroom activities integrate listening, reading, speaking and writing skills.
  • Grammar and vocabulary are taught in the context of authentic language use.


After successfully completing a course, you will receive a certificate indicating the level of second language proficiency attained. Intensive courses are not for credit.

Course Descriptions

ESL0105 Pre-Academic Foundations

Learn the basics! In this course you’ll develop the fundamental skills to enter our academic stream. By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • understand conversations, presentations and reading passages on general and familiar topics;
  • communicate ideas and opinions on everyday subjects relating to Canadian life and society;
  • use basic conversation skills to meet your daily needs;
  • write clear sentences, short paragraphs and simple emails on everyday topics;
  • understand and use every day English vocabulary and elementary grammar.


ESL0110 Academic Entry

Enter the exciting world of English for academic purposes!  In this course you’ll start to develop the skills to succeed in university classes.  By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • understand simple academic presentations and reading passages using various strategies to help your understanding
  • discuss your academic interests and background
  • develop useful conversation skills such as giving directions/instructions and making apologies
  • write short well-organized paragraphs and emails related to your academic interests and needs
  • understand and use high frequency English vocabulary and grammar
ESL0120 Academic Development

Develop your skills using English for academic purposes! At this level you’ll be surprised at how quickly your skills develop.  By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • use a variety of strategies such as note-taking, skimming and scanning, and using context clues to understand well-structured 3-5 minute academic presentations, short lectures, media podcasts, conversations, and 1-2 page simple academic texts
  • give 3-5 minute academic presentations
  • manage conversations using various strategies and different levels of formality
  • write unified paragraphs using different patterns of organization, such as process, compare/contrast, and description, and having clear main ideas and supporting details.
  • start to understand and use vocabulary from the academic wordlist and grammar common in academic texts/writing

ESL0130 Academic Enhancement

Improve your EAP skills rapidly! Enhance your academic skills to a level that brings you close to your future university studies!  By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • take detailed notes while making inferences, identifying main ideas and supporting details, and organizing and connecting information from academic lectures, interviews, and conversations up to 5-7 minutes in length, and from well-structured academic texts of 2-3 pages
  • give 5-7 minute academic presentations and participate in advanced group discussions and debates
  • interact effectively in academic settings by skilfully starting, maintaining, and ending conversations, and confirming understanding, changing topics, and expressing opinions politely
  • write well-organized essays using different patterns of organization such as cause-effect, opinion, process, and compare-contrast and prepare effective summaries of 1-2 page-long texts
  • display an advanced understanding and usage of vocabulary from the academic word list and of grammar common in academic contexts

ESL0140 Academic Bridging

Bridge into academic success! In this course you will develop advanced academic skills that help you transition into undergraduate and graduate classes at the university level.  By the end of this course, you will be able to:

  • take detailed notes while making logical inferences, organizing information, connecting ideas, and identifying main ideas and supporting details from academic conversations, lectures, and interviews  up to 10 minutes and from authentic academic texts about abstract and complex subjects
  • give 8-10 minute oral presentations on research topics and actively participate in academic discussions and debates on complex topics
  • display advanced conversation skills, such as proposing ideas, comparing information, giving instructions, checking comprehension, and handling disagreements, on complex topics
  • write well-organized research reports, essays, and summaries while using cohesive devices effectively and paraphrasing and referencing to avoid plagiarism
  • display mastery of a wide range of vocabulary from the academic word list and of academic grammar  
Academic Early Start

Learning English Through an Authentic University Course!

ESL0140 students have the opportunity to take an authentic university course each week. This course will be held on Tuesdays from 2:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m, and it will:

  • Encourage you to develop the learning strategies and study skills essential for success in undergraduate studies; 
  • Accelerate your language learning by exposing you to academic subject matter under the guidance of a supportive professor;
  • Give you an experience of the academic norms and culture of the University of Ottawa;
  • Increase your motivation by exposing you to an authentic academic undergraduate experience and by providing you with the opportunity to earn credits.*

The following course is part of the EIP curriculum. It is free for all EIP students enrolled in ESL0140.

CMN1148 Intro to Organizational Communication Study of the basic concepts in interpersonal and organizational communication. Processes and communication networks in the dyad, small groups and organizations.

* Students going into a program that accepts free electives may receive 3 credits for the course upon entering their program. Special conditions apply.

Back to top