• Summit College

What kind of English as a Second Language (ESL) training is right for you?

~ By Meaghan Green ~

What are the options for English as a Second Language Training in Ontario?


In Canada there are several different options for ESL training. The most common types are either government funded or private education centers. Both options do have their merits, but on a whole, if you can afford to, private training is more efficient and effective.


The types of government programs offered include:
  • Enhanced Language Training (ELT) - Programs that provide job-specific, advanced level English training to adults. ELT is particularly useful for internationally-trained professionals

  • English linked skills programs - Classes that help learners develop English language skills while learning other business or technical skills, such as typing or computer skills.

  • English literacy development (ELD) programs - Classes for people who speak a language other than English and do not read or write very well in any language. Literacy classes help to improve reading, writing and basic math skills in English.

  • English for special needs programs - Classes that accommodate learners' emotional, physical and/or developmental needs.

  • English for special purposes programs - Classes that focus on language skills related to specific areas of interest (for example, workplace, or academic reading and writing).

  • Job preparation programs - Programs that provide ESL training for those getting ready for a job.

  • Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada (LINC) - A program offered at no cost to eligible adult learners by the Government of Canada.

  • Occupation-specific Language Training (OSLT) - Free courses for eligible internationally-trained professionals and tradespeople at Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level 6-8 to improve communications skills for work. Offered at 14 colleges.

  • Test preparation classes - Classes that help you prepare for certain English ability tests, such as TOEFL or IELTS.

With many of these programs, especially the free ones, there are strict requirements on who can enter these classes. Usually they have to do with citizenship and residency requirements.


Traditionally, private ESL training is seen as something for international students or visitors to Canada, but it can also be very beneficial to newcomers in Canada looking for specific improvements in their own English practice. Both Public and Private Universities and Colleges offer ESL training, as do private language schools.


Why should I consider Summit College for my English as a Second Language Training?


Summit College is a small Private Career College. This means that we can offer each one of our students the benefit of individualized programming, as well as small student to teacher ratios at all of our Southern Ontario locations.


Some benefits of attending Summit College for ESL training:
  • Small class sizes – students work in small groups or individually on their own customized plan to help them succeed at the specific goals they have.

  • Fewer multilevel classes – students will be able to be in a class that is suited for their level as opposed to many public classes that can have wide variations.

  • Individualized curriculum planning- whether you are looking to improve your speaking or studying for an IELTS or TOEFL test we can create a program that suits your needs and will help you be successful in your personal goals.

  • Vocational specific training- are you interested in entering into a field with a lot of jargon and terms you are unfamiliar with in English? We can create a vocational specific curriculum in order to help prepare you for your new job.

  • Continuous intake – classes can begin at any day with flexible day time hours - we can create a schedule that meets your needs.


Meaghan Greene

Cambridge Campus Leader


I have always found joy in teaching adults, ESL always felt like a way to help newcomers to Canada become successful. This has very much translated into my everyday life here at Summit College. It is most important to me, both in teaching ESL as well as non- ESL students that they are given the opportunity to succeed. The advantage in working in specialized and individualized programs with each student is that I know that the students are getting all the attention they need to reach their full potential. As well, it creates a sense of confidence in the student, knowing that they are having their programs tailored to their individual needs, learning styles and goals.


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Summit College is registered as a private career college under the Private Career Colleges Act, 2005. Summit College has been helping adults move forward on new and rewarding career paths for over a decade. Summit also empowers youth by helping students catch-up, keep-up and get ahead in school through the means of tutoring services.​

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