The Semi-Intensive English Program (SIEP) at the Language Institute is designed for non-native English speakers who want to learn American English focusing on an integrative approach in reading, writing, listening and speaking, and grammar skills.
With courses available on Saturdays, this part-time program offers levels from Basic to Advanced and Electives. Elective courses include but are not limited to Conversation, Reading, Writing, Business English, Listening, Speaking, Grammar, Pronunciation, and TOEFL Test Prep.
The beginner levels are designed for those who speak little or no English and help participants gain confidence in their ability to speak English. These levels will introduce participants to the fundamental concepts of English overall and enable them to function and survive in an English-speaking environment through the development of simple conversation and listening skills, learning about basic grammar concepts, such as the simple present tense, gaining basic vocabulary, reading simple passages, as well as writing phrases or simple sentences. Participants who complete and meet the course requirements can move up to intermediate levels.
- Basic I
- Basic II
- Low Beginning
- High Beginning
The intermediate levels are designed for participants who can speak some English, but who may need help with expanding their vocabulary or speech in addition to other skills or areas. The levels will help participants gain confidence in their ability to speak English more fluently. For example, concepts covered in this level can be the modal auxiliaries or present perfect. Participants will gain a higher vocabulary and be able to express themselves in everyday situations, read varied passages, as well as write sentences. Participants who complete and meet the course requirements can move up to advanced levels.
- High Intermediate
The advanced levels are designed for participants who are relatively fluent, but who may need to enhance their vocabulary or speech in addition to other skills or areas. The levels are designed to help participants gain confidence in their ability to speak English in a more proficient manner. These levels will cover concepts such as reported speech or question tags. Participants will gain higher vocabulary and be able to express themselves in diverse situations, gain higher vocabulary, listen and understand to various conversations, read varied passages, as well as be able to write paragraphs.
- Low Advanced
- High Advanced
- Advanced 1
- Advanced 2
- Learn the fundamentals of English Grammar to more complex and diverse concepts through lessons and activities.
- Learn about Writing concepts through activities and corrections.
- Practice Listening and Speaking through group activities, discussions, dialogues, audios, and more.
- Read passages, answer comprehension questions from those passages, and discuss the questions as well as the vocabulary.
- The LI teaches grammar as a foundation for communication.
- Conversation, discussion and structured listening practice help participants gain confidence speaking and understanding English in everyday situations.
- Participants improve their ability to read and remember more, as well as learn how to write paragraphs and compositions.
- The LI teaches participants the words needed to communicate clearly. Learning idioms helps participants express themselves naturally in English.
- The Advanced levels teach important test-taking strategies and language skills such as advanced grammar, reading, writing, listening and speaking skills needed to succeed in an American university.
- The LI offers a variety of audio and video recordings that help participants practice and improve their listening skills. Participants use the laboratory all week with their instructor.
- At the end of each term, LI sends all participants a final evaluation of their performance in the program.
- At the end of each session, participants who successfully complete the requirements of the LI receive a Certificate of Participation.
Application and Payment
- Program Requirements
- Submit application electronically.
- Process placement test payment registration.
- Participants must be 18 years or older and have completed high school or equivalent
- US Citizens or Resident Aliens should bring their birth certificate, resident alien card or employment authorization letter.
- International Students must apply for F-1 visa.
- Transfers to another session are Not Allowed without prior approval.
- We require a written request emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org at least 3 business days prior to the start date of the course to get the registration fee refunded in full. Partial refunds are not available.
- It takes 5-7 business days to process refunds for credit/debit card payments.
- All new participants under the age of 22 must submit evidence of receiving the meningitis vaccine or booster shot (administered within the past five years) or evidence of exemption before they can enroll. Participants must provide proof of vaccination 10 days before the first day of the program.
- The I-20 Form will be provided to eligible international students in order to apply for an F-1 visa at their nearest U.S. Consulate.
- Statement of account with sufficient funds to cover tuition and books.
- Copy of passport (must be valid for at least 6 months)
- The Department of Homeland Security requires all foreign students to pay a SEVIS fee of $350 (USD) either by mail or via Internet, and fill out a form I-901 before making an appointment at the American Consulate.
- In order to gain admission to an American university, the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is required by most universities. The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley offers the TOEFL test several times a year. For further information on taking the TOEFL please contact the University Testing Center at
(956) 665-7584 or (956) 665-7585.
- Please note that participants enrolled in the Intensive English Program at the Language Institute who complete the Advanced Level successfully, may request a TOEFL waiver to attend UTRGV.
January 8 - March 26, Saturdays
9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Online & Face-to-face
Online: via Zoom
Edinburg CESS Building
Brownsville St. Joseph Academy
$ 550 p/p
* The early bird fee is valid until December 3, 2021