Bar-Ilan students who did not study in an English-speaking institution are required to take English as a Second Language (ESL) classes, in order to graduate. Placement, course length, and exemptions are different for  Undergraduate (B.A.) or Doctoral (M.A.) students.

Undergraduate Requirements

ESL for Undergraduate Students

All undergraduate students in Bar-Ilan University are required to complete their English as a Second Language (ESL) requirements by the end of their second academic year, and will not be able to register for third year classes until they complete all ESL requirements.

ESL Classes and Placement

There are 6 classes of ESL, into which students are placed according to a variety of criteria:

  1. Pre-Beginners I & II

    This course is designed for students with a rudimentary knowledge of English and teaches the basic fundamentals of grammar, reading, writing, conversation, and vocabulary expansion. It includes the material of ESL Beginners II.
    The course is 3 academic credits, and either spans an entire year, or a summer semester.

    • Placement: Psychometric score of 50-77 or TOEFL/ IELTS equivalent.
    • Syllabus
    • Next levelBasic.
  2. Pre-Basic II

    This course is designed for students who need to improve their general English language skills, and includes grammar review, sentence structure, and vocabulary expansion.
    The course is 1 academic credit, and either spans an entire year, or a summer semester.

    • Placement: Psychometric score of 78-84 or TOEFL/ IELTS equivalent.
    • Syllabus
    • Next level: Basic.
  3. Basic

    This course focuses on reading comprehension of texts in various fields, and includes various skills for language comprehension.
    The course is 2 academic credits, and either spans an entire year, or a summer semester.

    • Placement: Psychometric score of 85-94 or TOEFL/ IELTS equivalent, or completion of ESL Pre-Basic
    • Syllabus
    • Next level: Advanced I.
  4. Basic II

    This course is a more advanced class than Intermediate I, and as such focuses on the same reading comprehension skills, in a more condensed fashion..
    The course is 1 academic credit, and either spans an entire year, or a summer semester.

    • Placement: Psychometric score of 95-99 or TOEFL/ IELTS equivalent.
    • Syllabus
    • Next level: Advanced I.
  5. Advanced I

    This course focuses on improving reading skills in English, and aims to provide the student autonomy when reading original academic texts.
    The course is 2 academic credits, and spans a semester.

    • Placement: Psychometric score of 100-119 or TOEFL/ IELTS equivalent.
    • Syllabus
    • Next Level: Advanced II
  6. Advanced II

    This course focuses on further improving academic reading skills..
    The course is 2 academic credits, and spans a semester.

    • Placement: Psychometric score of 120-133 or TOEFL/ IELTS equivalent.
    • Syllabus
    • Completing this level grants exemption from ESL.

Exemptions from ESL

Students may be exempt from taking English as a Second Language (ESL) courses via the following:

  • Scoring 134 or above on the English section of the Psychometric Exam or TOEFL/ IELTS equivalent.
  • Completing a ESL track in one of the following academic institutions: Bar-Ilan University, Ben-Gurion University, Hebrew University, Tel Aviv University, Technion, Haifa University, Ariel University, Open University (Level A), Tel Hai College (Level A), Emek Israel College.
  • Earning a B.A. Degree from an accredited Israeli college.
  • Earning a High School diploma from an English-speaking country.
  • Earning a 500 or above on the Verbal section of the SAT.

Exemption requests should be sent to the English as a Second Language Office. Exemptions are valid for 10 years from their issuance.

Graduate Requirements
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