Frequently Asked Questions
How long will I stay in the ELI before I can start my program?
It all depends on what level you start at. There are 8 levels in the ELI. Each level takes 7 weeks to complete (and sometimes level 8 takes 14 weeks). When you arrive in the ELI, you take a placement test to see which level you should start at. At the end of each level, there is a final exam that you must pass before you go to the next level. In levels 6, 7 and 8 you can take courses from your program at the same time. When you finish Level 8, you can start your program full time.
Why should I choose the ELI instead of another ESL program?
The ELI was founded in 1992. It has a reputation of excellence in teaching ESL and in student
services. The ELI is one of the few Ontario college ESL programs specializing in ESL specifically
for international students. In addition, Seneca College is one of the largest colleges in Canada.
Being large comes with many advantages, such as more resources, facilities and opportunities for
What is the difference between a SHORT Level 8 and a LONG Level 8?
If you start Level 8 in March, May, July or November, Level 8 will last 7 weeks. We call this a SHORT Level 8. You will study 16 hours of English, one College subject or an Advanced English Skills subject, plus 5 lab hours per week, for a total of 25 hours per week.
If you start Level 8 in January, May or September, Level 8 will last 14 weeks. We call this a LONG Level 8. You will study 8 hours of English, 1 - 3 College subjects or an Advanced English Skills subject and 5 lab hours per week, for a total of 25 hours per week.
Note that in May, you have the choice between Short 8 and Long 8. Please see our curriculum page for sample SHORT and LONG Level 8 timetables.
What if I don't want to take a LONG Level 8?
You don't have to take a Long Level 8. You can take a break for 2 months, and come back for a
Short Level 8.
What happens when I finish Level 8?
When you finish Level 8, you will receive a Certificate of Standing from the ELI. You will be automatically registered in your program at Seneca College. You will not have to take another English test.
Can I work while I am in the ELI?
You can work on campus while you are in the ELI.
Can I work part-time (off campus - 24 hours per week) after studying in the ELI for more than 6 months?
While you are in the ELI, you can work on campus. When you are in your professional program, you can start working off campus for up to 24 hours per week immediately.
Can I go to another college or university after ELI?
The ELI will prepare you for academic studies in English at the college and university level.
Each institution has its own English requirements.
Can I start my post secondary studies before I finish Level 8?
If you receive a TOEFL or IELTS test score for your program, you can start your post secondary studies before you finish Level 8.
Do I have to study a professional program at Seneca?
No, you can study only ESL if you like. You can study for one level only, or more.
Can I graduate from the ELI and enter into a Diploma program?
If you have a conditional acceptance to your Diploma program and you graduate from Level 8 with
at least 60%, you can enter your Diploma program.
Can I graduate from the ELI and enter into a Degree program?
If you have a conditional acceptance to your Degree program and you graduate from Level 8 with at least 70% in ELI804 and a pass in ELI950, you can enter your Degree program.
Can I graduate from the ELI and enter into a Post Graduate program?
If you have a conditional acceptance to your Post Graduate program and you graduate from Level 8
with at least 80% in ELI804 and a pass in ELI950, you can enter your Post Graduate program.
How much does the ELI cost per level?
The tuition fee for 1 level of ELI is approximately $3,300. This includes health insurance. Books and materials are approximately $100. Living costs are approximately $1,000 per month, and $2000 for one level. Click here to go to our fee policy.
Why does the ELI cost the same as my professional program?
The ELI is the same high quality as your professional program, including the professors, the facilities, the resources and the services. When you are an ELI student, you are a Seneca College student, benefitting from the same excellence in academic standards.
Did You Know?
1. The ELI has 3 highly innovative language labs. In fact, visitors come from all over the world to see these digital labs and to study how they are used in the ELI.
2. The ELI graduates approximately 600 students per year. Most of these students continue post secondary studies at Seneca and are successful in their programmes. Many students continue with university studies or post-diploma studies.
3. All ELI professors are university graduates with TESL certification and have experience abroad. Many have Masters or PHD's in TESL or Applied Linguistics.
4. The ELI has its own Ontario and Canada-certified TESL program, where university graduates learn to teach ESL. These graduates go on to successful careers teaching ESL all over the world.
5. The ELI has run ESL schools in other countries such as Mexico, Chile and China.
6. ELI students have many opportunities to travel around Toronto, Ontario and Canada on trips organized by the International Student Services Department. Click here to see our activities.
7. The ELI has a highly diverse staff who speak Spanish, French, Arabic, Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean, Serbo-Croatian, Russian, German, Italian, Farsi, Japanese, Greek, and of course, English.
8. The ELI offers free evening tutorials for one-on-one help in writing, pronunciation and grammar. The tutorials are on a walk-in basis in the evenings Monday - Thursday and are run by ELI professors.