Programs And Courses

English as a Second Language

HACC offers concentrated instruction in English for students who primarily speak another language. Learn about our English as a Second Language (ESL) program.


Can I benefit from the ESL program?

HACC established its ESL program in 1975. The program provides comprehensive ESL training for HACC students.

You can benefit from the ESL Program if you need to improve your English language skills. You must also be:

  • Pursuing a degree at HACC.
  • Planning to enroll at other institutions after completion of ESL.
  • Actively enhancing your English skills.
  • Interested in a short-term program.

HACC regulations can mandate ESL coursework prior to any college work in writing or speech.


What are the objectives of the courses?

The ESL program at HACC will:

  • Help you gain language skills to achieve your vocational, personal and academic goals.
  • Present the sound system, structure and vocabulary of American English. We present information in culturally-relevant contexts. Objectives focus on listening, speaking, reading and writing skills.
  • Include group and individual practice in learning situations. Learning situations range from controlled activities to less structured activities.
  • Place emphasis on achieving accuracy and fluency.


How many levels of ESL does HACC offer? What skills do they teach?

ESL offers four levels of semi-intensive English instruction. Each level concentrates on all four language skills:

  • Listening
  • Speaking
  • Reading
  • Writing


How often does HACC hold ESL classes?

Students have the choice to enroll in semi-intensive courses or full semester courses.

Semi-intensive courses are completed in half semester increments. Classes meet Monday through Thursday. Semi-intensive courses allow students to complete two ESL levels each semester.

Whole semester courses follow regular semester timeframes meeting two or three times a week. Students enrolled in whole semester courses complete one ESL level per semester.


How does HACC determine my ESL level?

HACC determines your ESL level based on the results of your placement testing. Learn more about placement testing.


When can I enroll in the ESL program?

You can enroll in the ESL program during the Fall, Spring and some Summer semesters, depending on campus location.  

Does HACC accept TOEFL or IELTS scores?

HACC will accept the following TOEFL scores to be waived from ESL classes:

  • 550 or higher on the paper/pencil version
  • 217 or higher on the computer version
  • 79 or higher on the Internet-based test

HACC will accept an IELTS score of 6.5 to be waived from ESL classes. 

How can I get more information?

E-mail for more information. 

Does Workforce Development offer an English as a Second Language program? 

Workforce Development offers a 50-hour English language development course. Learn more about Workforce Development ESL.