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If English is not the first language of students wanting to take an English class for the first time at DCC, special ESL placement testing is provided through the Office of Academic Services and Testing. Based on the test results, students qualify either for one of two credit-equivalent courses--English 095 or English 096--or for English 101. Students not scoring high enough to enter the lower-level course (English 095) are encouraged to take ESL classes offered through the Office of Community Services or to work on their English independently in the Learning Center.
English 095 and English 096 are courses for students who need to improve their ability to speak, listen to, read, and write standard American English. Students who qualify for the courses are typically graduates of U.S. or foreign secondary schools, though a significant number are college graduates who have worked as professionals in their native countries. Many are adults and are part-time rather than full-time students. Basic composition skills are emphasized in English 095, and English 096 students concentrate on advanced composition, including essay writing. A grade of C or better qualifies English 095 students for English 096, and a grade of C or better qualifies English 096 students for English 101.
At the English 101 level, ESL students may enter any Composition I section; however, in both the fall and spring semesters one special section of Composition I is reserved for ESL students. Half of the class time is spent in a computer lab. The requirements and standards for the ESL section are the same as for all other English 101 sections. However, all students in the ESL section must also take English 001--a credit-equivalent class that meets for one hour per week and focuses on advanced grammar and idiom study.
At the English 102 level, ESL students may enter any Composition II section; however, once a year in the spring semester a special Composition II section is reserved for ESL students. Half of the class time is spent in a computer lab using the DIWE program. The requirements and standards for the ESL section are the same as for all other English 102 sections. Students taking the ESL section are encouraged--but not required--to take English 002, which offers course specific study skills for any English 102 student.
ESL students at all levels are encouraged to work on their compositions with Writing Center tutors and to take advantage of the Learning Center for independent ESL study, using both course-related and general materials available in a variety of formats. Many ESL students also take one or more of the reading courses (Reading 91/100, Reading 103, Reading 105), and a number are in curricula requiring one or more 200-level English courses.