Academic English Program
For over 30 years the Academic English Program (AEP) has successfully prepared international students for academic programs at Saint Michael's or other universities in the United States. View the AEP mission statement for more information.
The AEP provides language and academic skills preparation for students with high-intermediate to advanced language proficiency. Each level requires one full semester (16 weeks) to complete. Sessions are available throughout the year, including summer.
The AEP includes academic English as well as "content" courses. Students receive university credit for all of the classes they complete while in the program.
Many students have selected Saint Michael's AEP because upon successful completion they may enter our undergraduate program with nearly a full year of credit. Transfer of credit to other institutions is also a possibility, but dependent on the receiving institution.
Openings for the AEP are in late August and January, and last for 16 weeks. The summer Academic English Program is offered from May through early August.
The AEP has two levels of study depending on the student's needs and abilities. Students who score below the minimum score in English must start in the Intensive English Program and transfer to the AEP when they are ready.
Requirements for Admission
- Level I: TOEFL score of 480 PBT / 55 iBT (IELTS 5.5)
- Level II: TOEFL score or 520 PBT / 68 iBT (IELTS 6.0)
- Good secondary school record
*PBT = Paper-Based Test CBT = Computer-Based Test iBT = Internet-Based Test
Because AEP content courses are writing intensive, all new AEP students will be assessed for writing proficiency upon arrival to confirm appropriate placement.
Level I AEP students take a total of four courses: two courses in advanced English, one undergraduate-level "content" course, and one academic support course.
- College Reading and Writing
- Advanced English Grammar
- One undergraduate-level content course with academic English support. This "adjunct" course is designed by faculty in ESOL and the relevant subject in close cooperation, so that native speakers of English and ALD students may study and learn together at the university level. Research and experience show that this is a highly effective way of learning for both groups of students. In recent semesters, content course offerings have included the following subjects: Applied Linguistics (Intercultural Communication), Business (Critical Thinking and Communication), Biology (Human Nutrition), Environmental Studies, and Sociology/Anthropology (Introduction to Cultural Anthropology).
- English 103. This is an academic support course for ALD students taking the sheltered academic course described above. It helps students to master the course's academic content as well as such skills as taking notes, using the library, studying for examinations and communicating with professors and other students.
Students who successfully complete Level I receive 12 university credits (the equivalent of three undergraduate classes) that will apply to the student's academic degree, and advance to Level II.
Level II AEP students take two courses in advanced English and two content courses. Upon completion, they are deemed ready to enter the undergraduate degree program.
- Advanced College Writing
- Introduction to Literature
- First content course of the student's choice*
- Second content course of the student's choice*
*As content courses, AEP II students typically take classes towards the student's major or the Liberal Studies Requirement (link to LSR). Students who have not yet selected a major may also take an exploratory course in whichever subject they choose. Students may take any courses offered at Saint Michael's for which they have met the academic requirements.
Students who successfully complete Level II receive 16 full university credits (the equivalent of four undergraduate classes), which will apply toward their degree. They will be invited to matriculate into the undergraduate degree program without taking a TOEFL exam. Successful completion of the AEP means earning cumulative and semester GPAs of 2.0 or higher with no failing grades.
Applying for the AEP
- Short form application (Writing sample and recommendations are NOT required)
- TOEFL/IELTS test results.
- Copy of Passport
- Financial Certification
Students intending to study in an undergraduate degree-program at Saint Michael's may apply for conditional admittance prior to or after arriving on campus. If successful they will be considered a "Pathway Student".
AEP students are housed in Ambassador Housing, which means they get to fully experience university life in one of our most modern residence halls. Students have a single room located in a 4-person or 8-person suite that they share with American students. Full access to all university facilities including the library, technology, and sports facilities is included. AEP students may participate in all university clubs and all activities that are available to undergraduate students.
A current edition of the Student Handbook can be downloaded.
...if you wish to apply for or require more information about the AEP
...if you wish to apply for Conditional Admission to the undergraduate degree program and become a Pathway student: