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Local English language and conversation classes

The University of Missouri and the Columbia community offer multiple programs for developing English language skills. The International Center does not endorse any particular language program listed here. The list is to be used only as a guide.

Free programs

International Friendship Program (MU International Center): New international students and scholars are paired with American students or community members to help welcome them to the United States and help them acclimate to mid-Missouri. The program helps new students and scholars build relationships and practice their English language skills.

Asian Affairs Conversation Partners (MU Asian Affairs Center): University students meet with Korean and Chinese visitors six or more times each semester to practice English and increase cross-cultural understanding.

Women's Center Language Partners Program (MU Women's Center): International students practice their conversational English skills with native English speakers, who in turn get to learn more about the students' cultures. Partners meet one hour a week.

Multicultural Hour (sponsored by multiple MU organizations): International and American students join in casual conversation. Refreshments are provided.

English Conversation Group Program (International Friends Center): International Friends, a Christian ministry, provides an opportunity for international students and scholars to ask questions, develop listening skills, practice speaking, make friends and learn about American culture through conversations with Americans.

International Ministry Free Classes (Campus Lutheran Church): The church provides classes for students to practice pronunciation, expand their vocabulary, learn songs and poems, and practice telephone skills.

English Language Classes (Adult Learning Center, Columbia Area Career Center): The Adult Learning Center provides many activities to support non-native English speakers in improving their English language skills. English classes are available in the morning, afternoon and evening for all levels of ESL students.

Academic programs

English Language Support Program (MU Center for English Language Learning): All new degree-seeking international undergraduates whose native language is not English are required to take the MU English language exam in order to complete registration for courses. Based on your exam performance, you might be cleared to take a full-time load of academic courses, or you might be required to enroll in one or two English language courses through the English Language Support Program along with a reduced academic course load. For more information about the English language exam, see the ISRO Guide.

Fee-based programs

Accent Modification Program (MU School of Health Professions): This program assists non-native speakers of English who want to change their pronunciation of English in order to meet their communication goals.

Intensive English Program (MU Center for English Language Learning): MU offers non-native speakers of English a high-quality program of intensive English language training designed to provide students with the English language skills necessary to successfully study for an academic degree at a college or university in the United States.

TOEFL Prep Course (Adult Learning Center, Columbia Area Career Center): This course is designed for students with English as a second language, that are 16 years of age or older, who are preparing for postsecondary education.

International Teaching Assistant Program

Through education, assistance and assessment, the University of Missouri Graduate School's International Teaching Assistant Program helps ensure that all teaching assistants, research assistants, graduate instructors and postdoctoral fellows who are non-native speakers of English are able to speak well enough to effectively communicate in the classroom, as required by state law and university policy.