The English as a Second Language program requires that ESL students enter R-MA with a minimum score of 650 on the TOEFL Junior or a minimum score of 54 on the TOEFL. While R-MA will consider TOEFL Junior and TOEFL scores submitted as part of the admissions packet, we do not accept these scores for placement into English or ESL classes. Placement is determined by the score achieved on the English language proficiency test taken upon arrival. Students scoring 850 or above on TOEFL Jr. or above 75 on TOEFL are considered for current regular English courses.
International students whose English capabilities fall below the score of 650 on the TOEFL Junior or below the score of 54 on the TOEFL submitted as part of the admission’s packet are required to attend the ESL Summer School session prior to being admitted in the Fall.
The current ESL program features a curriculum that addresses the needs of the second language learner in the skill areas of reading, writing, speaking and listening. Grammar study is a key component at each of the three levels (ESL II, ESL III, and ESL IV [introduction to mainstream English]), while reading, writing and the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) Prep are the primary focus of the Introduction to Mainstream English offering.
ESL II (Progressing) Grammar and Vocabulary (650-715 TOEFL Jr. score/54 TOEFL score)
This course is designed for progressing level language learners. Goals include a reinforcement of basic grammar, an introduction and intense study of more complex grammar, including further development of conversational skills, reading skills, writing skills and vocabulary development. Journal writings, idiom study, book reports, projects and an introduction to TOEFL are included.
ESL II (Progressing) Reading and Writing (650-715 TOEFL Jr. score/54 TOEFL score)
This course works to develop paragraph level writing and essay writing skills for progressing ESL students. It includes intensive work to extend reading comprehension abilities through reading response writings, comprehension exercises and discussions.
ESL III (Expanding) Reading and Writing (720-780 TOEFL Jr. score/64 TOEFL score)
ESL III is the second level of courses offered to international students at R-MA. It is designed for students whose English level is expanding. There are two course offerings within ESL III: Composition/Grammar and Reading/Vocabulary. Grammar, vocabulary and essay writing are stressed at this level. In ESL III, students continue to develop their communicative competence by interacting orally and in writing with other English speakers, understanding oral and written messages in English, and making oral and written presentations in English. They communicate on a variety of topics at a level commensurate with their study, using more complex structures in English and moving from concrete to more abstract concepts. They comprehend the main ideas of the authentic materials they listen to and read and are able to identify significant details when the topics are familiar. Students develop the ability to discuss in English topics related to historical and contemporary events and issues. Goals for this course include developing, increasing, and refining the language skills of the students, guiding the students in preparation for the TOEFL, preparing the students in grammatical English, and assisting each student as he or she moves toward total integration in the R-MA curriculum.
Mainstream (Accomplished) English (780+ TOEFL Jr. score/74 TOEFL score)
Mainstream English is designed to be the first mainstream Literature and Composition course for international students who have an accomplished ESL proficiency. The course awards standard English credit and is offered in two sections: Literature/Vocabulary and Composition/Grammar. The classes include readings and projects accomplished in our regular 9th and 10th grade English courses. These courses fulfill all of the requirements of the current regular English courses, but also address the specific language needs of ESL students. The first quarter is an intensive study of the literary devices and concepts needed to accomplish this level of English study as well as an introduction to utilizing complex grammatical structures in MLA style essay and research writing. While the second, third, and fourth quarters follow the coursework typical of the 9th and 10th grade English programs, the approach to instruction addresses the specialized needs of ESL students.