by Anna Hunko

English for Foreign Students Program

focuses on English for academic purposes, integrated with orientation to graduate study at a major research university.

English for Foreign Students (EFS)

The English for Foreign Students (EFS) Program in the Stanford Language Center offers courses to currently enrolled, international graduate students in English as a second language (ESL).

EFS Placement Test

Incoming graduate students who have been notified via Axess that they are required to take the exam by the Graduate Admissions Office will have the exam on the "To Do" list.

TA Screening

International graduate students who wish to be appointed as teaching assistants or course assistants must first be screened by EFS for readiness to use English in a teaching role.

EFS Courses

See which one is for you

EFS Testing

English Placement Test, TA Screening and Waiver

Program Objectives and Policies

Can I study English as a second/foreign language at Stanford?

If you are a current Stanford student, you can take classes with us! During the academic year (September-June) participation in ESL classes is strictly limited to matriculated Stanford students taking the courses for credit, with courses aimed specifically toward improving English language proficiency for graduate study and professional development. Stanford undergraduates may take certain of our courses for credit with permission: contact kgeda [at] (kgeda[at]stanford[dot]edu) to make the request.

If I am not a current Stanford student, how can I study English at Stanford?

We cannot admit students to study English during Fall, Winter, and Spring quarters (September - June). All of our students are enrolled in degree-seeking programs at Stanford. This means that if you are not currently admitted to earn a Masters or doctoral degree, we regret that we cannot accommodate you (with few exceptions), and auditing is not allowed. We do not offer independent English courses, online or otherwise, to visting students. Refer to EFS policies for full details

Historically in the summer--July and August--we have offered a variety of ESL courses for summer visitors, incoming graduate students, and visiting scholars in addition to continuing graduate students.  More information about our past programs is available here: EFS Summer Programs