Queen's University

Summer English program sets students up for success

 
2012-09-12
QBridge participants (above, 2012 students, instructors and coordinators) take a rigorous 8.5-week program to improve their English skills before moving into undergraduate programs at Queen's in the fall. 

An intensive summer language program offered through the Queen’s School of English (QSoE) provides a necessary link for international students who need to boost their English skills before starting academic studies at Queen’s. QBridge ran successfully as a three-year pilot program and will continue as a way to attract top students from around the world.

“QBridge is a rigorous course designed to help students improve their English skills, but it also helps them acclimatize to campus and Canadian culture,” says Elaine Armstrong, Director, QSoE. “I believe they start ahead because they gain confidence and have the chance to adapt to the study environment at Queen’s.”

In collaboration with the Registrar’s Office, QBridge allows the university to make conditional offers to students whose English standard test mark falls just below the required grade. Students who successfully complete the 8.5-week intensive course – no one has been left behind since the program began – can move seamlessly into undergraduate programs beginning in the fall term.

The bar is set high and students are not guaranteed a passing grade. Surveys show many participants found the course tough but enriching and integral to future success at the university.

QSoE hopes to expand the program, aiming to host two classes of 10 students per summer.

The program fits the university’s internationalization goal of increasing international student enrolment. The program’s success will lead to more effective use of our teaching and learning environment during the summer. 

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