Course information for English as a Second Language (ESL) Summer Intensive Program

Dear Students:
My name is Rebecca and I will be the instructor for the Summer ESL program.  I look forward to meeting all of you and anticipate that we are going to have a great experience this summer.  I am really excited - I think we have some interesting topics to cover and I hope you will learn a lot and have fun too.


Last year, we had students from five or six different countries at least.  I look forward to a diverse group this year, as well.  Closer to the start of the program, I will be reaching out to you to ask yourself to introduce Closer to the start of the program, I will be reaching out to you to ask you to virtually introduce yourself:  what you like to be called, where you are from, and what you hope to get out of the program? This will help me plan the course better.

Here is some information about the basics of the program:

  • Dates: July 28th-August 26th, no class August 20th and August 25th to accomodate orientation activities.
  • Times: Classes will be held from 9 am-1 pm, Monday through Friday so that students may explore Rochester in the evenings.
  • Location: Always in Lattimore 431. For those of you who aren't here yet --- that's on the River Campus which is the main campus of the University of Rochester. Check out this map: If you have trouble, look for the big library tower (it's very tall). Lattimore is the square in front of the library.
  • How to reach me: Rebecca Allen Email: rallen16@ur.rochester.edu toll free in North America: +1 (866) 338-7713 outside of North America: +1 (585) 354-8986
  • Format: There are four modules or "mini classes" that make up this program. For the first week, July 28-August 1, we will be studying English Interpersonal Communication. For the second,third, and fourth weeks, August 4-August 26, we will be studying Pronunciation, Conversational English, and Communicative Grammar, each for about 75 minutes per day.
  • Typically, the class is arranged so that we devote 10-20 minutes going over a particular topic or goal in sort of a lecture or exercise based format, followed by about an hour practicing this concept by having a discussion, game or activity. The class will be very interactive, so come prepared to participate. The only way you learn to speak English is by speaking English, after all.
  • What to bring:
    • Please bring a laptop/tablet or notebook and pen to take notes. A pen and notebook is typically better because we will be learning about phonetic symbols, and it can be inconvenient to write those on your computer.
    • Please bring an internet enabled device (laptop/tablet or smartphone) as some activities will require internet access.
    • Please bring a recorder (i.e. smart phone) if you have one - no need to buy one, but if you have one, please bring it.
    • We will be using a course kit (i.e. handouts) for the first week. I will give them out in class. For weeks two-four, you will need books to participate in class:
      • Clear Speech: Pronunciation and Listening Comprehension in North American English (3rd Edition, Students Book that includes CD), by Judy B. Gilbert, ISBN 978-0-521-54354-5
      • Understanding and Using English Grammar, by Betty S. Azar and Stacy A. Hagen, ISBN 978-0-13-233330-6

I am attaching a handout that goes over our goals for each mini-course, so you can see what we will be covering.


Warm Wishes and I look forward to meeting you all in person,


Rebecca