More About ESL Programs and Your ESL Needs

by Jimmy Cathey

The English as a Second Language (ESL) program of study you decide to enroll in will make a significant difference between success, feeling you might have wasted your time and effort, motivation to learn English and failure. To get things started we’ll talk about some of the popular programs available to students.

So many programs, so few letters. In the world of English language learning, you have ESL, EFL, EIL, SLA, SLL well, well, well. What the L is going on!? What does this all mean? So many acronyms, so few letters. Let’s make sense of the English alphabet soup before we get lost in the sauce.

In the world of Second Language Learning, (SLL), different ways to study and master a foreign language are available. In this case, we’re talking about English, so let’s makes sense of the variety of programs of study available to students of all ages.

SLL – Second Language Learning

it’s all about learning a second language. There are a variety of different ways to learn a second language. Some people learn when they speak and listen to family members from ‘the old country’. Some learn on a job while still others learn in a classroom setting or some combination of classes and in the community. For the most part, the goal is to gain a level of fluency in the target language. Second language learning is a process that can incorporate all the methods and strategies that help you to meet your language fluency goal.

There are different reasons why people decide to learn English. Many learn for academic reasons. They what to study a subject or have a skill in English so they can pursue a course of study at a university in an English speaking country. This is the EAP of it all which we will discuss in detail later. For now, we will lay the groundwork for the variety of methods and strategies to gain fluency in English.

SLA – Second Language Acquisition – How Do I Learn

How do you learn a second language? Do you learn when you take a trip to a country to study their language? Online courses? Do you take formal classes or some combination classes and online courses? Do you go only depend on social media to be your teacher and tutor? SLA is about how you access the second language. Do you watch movies or TV programs?

ESL – English as a Second Language

What’s it all about? You learn English as a second language. The approach, method and technique you use will depend on your end goal or objective. If you want to learn English in order to enjoy the arts, it might be enough to become proficient at a conversational level. Then you never need to deal with the ins and out of grammar. Lucky you! For instance, you could want to learn just enough Italian to follow the libretto if you are an opera aficionado.

On the other hand, if you plan to learn English for academic purposes, you are in for a completely different experience. This process can seem like a tedious, sometimes stressful task that might include a standardized test at the end. What an order! Whatever your goal, it helps to know how the various programs of study are different and what similarities exist between them. Check back for the next post about ESL programs of study. If you like what you are reading, tell a friend to check it out.

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