English for Speakers of Other Languages

Barbara Britt-Hysell

The ESOL office is located on the lower level of Buttrick Hall.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the ESOL office on campus located?

As you walk by Commons dining hall on your way to the library, you will pass Buttrick Hall on your right.  The office is on the lower level of this building (with the great spirits of Hamilton College).

Where do most ESOL students come from?

ESOL students may include international visa students, immigrants, and permanent residents as well as naturalized and native born citizens of the United States and Canada. We have had students from China, South Korea, Kenya, Vietnam, Nepal, the Republic of Georgia, Romania, Bosnia, Colombia, Nigeria, Lithuania, France, Scotland and Germany.  With students from all over the world, the ESOL program vibrantly supports the diversity on campus.

I am an international student, and I studied at an English-medium high school. Is it necessary that I sign up for the ESOL class?

Many international students who come to Hamilton have studied in English-speaking environments. However, most of them feel a need to learn the standard academic English expected in American college classrooms. Students in the ESOL program acknowledge and appreciate classes, tutorials and workshops offered. Most professors strongly recommend non-native speakers to work with ESOL writing tutors in writing their essays and papers.  

Why is the acronym ESOL now instead of ESL?

Non-native English speakers are often no longer learning English as their second language.  To many, English may be their third, fourth or fifth language. In respect to their knowledge and skills, the terminology has changed, and thus, the acronym.

What are some of the acronyms used in English language learning?
NS Native speaker
L1 Primary language learner
NNS Non-natives speaker
L2 Second language learner
NES Native English speaker
ELL English language learner
ESL English as a second language (NNS living in U.S.)
ESOL English for speakers of other languages
(Multilingual NNS in US, NNS outside U.S.)
EFL English as a foreign language
ESLL English as a second language learner
ELI English Language Instruction (or Institute)
SLEP Secondary Level English Proficiency
TAST TOEFL Academic Speaking Test (Int-Adv levels)
TL Target language
TOPE Test of Professional English
TOEFL Test of English as a Foreign Language
TOEIC Test of English for International Communication
TEDE Test of English for Distance Education
TFI Test de Francais International (NNFS in workplace)