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Intensive English Program

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One of the most important parts of our International program at DBU is our Intensive English Program (IEP). This program is designed to give International students the opportunity to learn English and/or improve their English before beginning their academic studies at DBU.

Philip Homer, DBU’s director of IEP, sat down with me to talk more about the program. He said, “We have six levels of class groups for IEP. IEP students go to university chapel, and they take one academic credit course along with their English classes. IEP students get a full hour of tutoring each week along with their academic course. The IEP schedule is different than the most of the university’s schedule in that classes meet four times a week. Each level takes two months. If a student comes in at level one, it will usually take them about a year to finish every level. It is possible to skip levels, and sometimes students have to retake levels as well.”

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DBU has an excellent group of student tutors who work with our International students. A few of these tutors shared some of their experiences working with International students, and how working with these students has impacted their lives. “I wanted to tutor because I want to teach oversees someday. I love teaching English, so getting this experience has been a huge blessing to me, says Rachael, who has tutored for one semester. Rachel, another tutor, says, “I didn’t even know that International tutoring existed. I had to take an English class that required a service learning component, and one of my International friends told me about the tutoring program. I was a missionary kid, so I have loved getting to know students from all over the world.” “I realized that if I wanted to do mission work in the future, I needed to start now,” says Briana, the leader of the DBU International tutoring program. “I asked myself, ‘if I want to go to Africa or China later on, why am I not preparing for those experiences now?’ I jumped on a bus to go to an International retreat, and ended up meeting the head International tutor, who offered me a job.”IMG 1008

 

Olivia, another International tutor, shared a story of how tutoring International students opens the door for friendships between American students and International students. She says, “ I had a student who started coming to tutoring who had just started the IEP program. Her English was not very good yet, and she was not a Christian. I tutored her a couple times a week, and it was an opportunity for me to share the Gospel. We became close friends, and she finished the IEP program recently. I think that her story just goes to show that tutoring is so beneficial to both IEP students and to academic students. It is a great avenue for meeting other DBU students, as well.”

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Candace, an International student from China, is currently in the IEP program, and she sat down with me and shared all about her experience at DBU. “I have been here about five months, and I just started level six. I love the IEP instructors because they are patient and they make sure that we can always understand what they are teaching us. I especially love the tutoring time because they help us not only with our homework, but also with having conversations in English. DBU students are so friendly, and the IEP instructors are so knowledgeable. I also love the campus. In China we use the term Feng Shui to describe the DBU campus. It is so beautiful!”

For many International students, the Intensive English Program is the beginning of their academic experience in the U.S., and our IEP directors, instructors, and tutors are an essential part of making these students' DBU experience great. We are so thankful for their passion for teaching and their dedication to the International students at DBU!

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