English as a Second Language (ESL) Courses 

These courses are designed for English language learners who have had opportunities to develop language and literacy skills in their own language appropriate to their age or grade level. Most English language learners are in this group. These learners may be entering secondary school from elementary school alongside their English-speaking peers, or they may be entering secondary school in Ontario having recently arrived from other countries. They can read and write in their own language within the expected range for students of their age in their own country. They can build on their existing first-language skills when learning English in an ESL program. 

The five ESL courses are based on levels of proficiency in English. Depending on learners' previous experience with English, students may be placed in ESL Level 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5. For example, a student who has been in full-time education in his or her country of origin but who has never studied English would be placed in ESL Level 1. A student who has been in full-time education in his or her own country and has studied some English might be placed in ESL Level 2 or 3 on the basis of the initial English language assessment. A student who has studied English for several years might be placed in ESL Level 3, 4, or 5 on the basis of the initial English language assessment. A student who has studied English for several years might be placed in ESL Level 3, 4, or 5 on the basis of the initial English language assessment. Students of Grade 9 age whose initial assessment indicates that they are beyond ESL Level 4 (ESLDO) should be placed directly in Grade 9 Applied English (ENG1P) or Grade 9 Academic English (ENG1D).

Chart 1. Courses in English as a Second Language 

Course: ESL Level 1 
Course Type: Open 
Course Code: ESLAO 
Credit Value: 1 

Course: ESL Level 2 
Course Type: Open 
Course Code: ESLBO 
Credit Value: 1 
Prerequisite: ESL Level 1 or equivalent* 

Course: ESL Level 3 
Course Type: Open 
Course Code: ESLCO 
Credit Value: 1 
Prerequisite: ESL Level 2 or equivalent* 

Course: ESL Level 4 
Course Type: Open 
Course Code: ESLDO 
Credit Value: 1 
Prerequisite: ESL Level 3 or equivalent* 

Course: ESL Level 5 
Course Type: Open 
Course Code: ESLEO 
Credit Value: 1 
Prerequisite: ESL Level 4 or equivalent* 

*"Equivalent" may be an equivalent course of study in other provinces in Canada or in other countries, or a proficiency level determined through initial assessment.