ESL - English As A Second Language

ESL Program at San Jose City College

The ESL Program at San Jose City College serves students who identify themselves as learners of English as a second language. Our program helps students of all ages and backgrounds achieve their education, employment, and lifelong-learning goals by providing them with instruction in English as a second language.

Learn About Us

Have questions about the ESL Program at San Jose City College? Please click here to join our workshops or drop-in sessions and get your questions answered. 

Placement in the ESL Program

All incoming credit ESL students are required to take the ESL Placement Test, which includes a short writing assignment. Students must also take the ESL Accuplacer test, which includes a listening and reading component given on the computer. 
We continue to offer ESL placement testing for students who feel they need additional language acquisition support. Placement test results are used for course placement purpose only. They are not used to prevent any student from enrolling and/or attending San Jose City College. Counselors at SJCC will use these results along with other information to help students decide on a program of courses. 
More information is available at the Assessment Center. For more information on How to Enroll, please download the "How to Register for Credit ESL Classes" document.

If you plan to take only noncredit ESL classes, complete the Noncredit Application Form.  If you are coming from a local Adult Education program, you can contact your Transition Specialist for your Adult Education program or email Transition Specialist at San Jose City College, or to get assistance on how to apply to the appropriate level noncredit courses. Noncredit classes are free!

ESL Program Description

The English as a Second Language Department offers a total of 7 core credit courses, 3 elective credit lecture courses, and 7 FREE non-credit lecture courses that span 5 levels of language proficiency, from low-intermediate to advanced, to teach the English language skills of writing and rhetoric, reading, listening, speaking, grammar, and pronunciation. 
Students can earn the state-approved ESL in Career & College Certificate by completing 3 specified non-credit low-intermediate level classes. Please access the ESL Program Chart for more information. 

Courses are each offered twice a week, Monday-Wednesday or Tuesday-Thursday, in day or night sessions.  Each credit course has a number of set 'units', ranging from 3 to 6 units.  Each unit represents the number of hours in class time each week throughout a 16-week semester.  

For example, a 4-unit course meets for 2 hours twice a week.  One to two sections of ESL 91 are offered as hybrid online classes each semester, and most ESL courses are web-enhanced by instructors who use Canvas. Two sections of lecture courses are usually offered offsite at the Milpitas Extension campus, which has free parking. 

In addition to 17 lecture classes, ESL offers two required 0.5-unit lab courses (24 hours over a 16-week semester) that are linked to parent courses ESL 322 and ESL 312, as well as a recommended 0-unit free lab course. 
Students have access to a fully-equipped multimedia ESL laboratory where they can fulfill their lab requirements.  Students can access the ESL lab course materials and numerous other links at when the on-campus lab is closed.

ESL Program Student Learning Outcomes

  • Use English for a variety of educational, social, and  occupational purposes.
  • Recognize multiple perspectives and values inherent in our culturally diverse society.
  • Apply critical thinking and analytical skills to expand learning.
  • Demonstrate the ability to use information technology.

 Image Viewer



ESL Lab Information

The ESL Lab is in the Library/LRC Building in L-120.

Information for Students: When using the lab outside of class time, students should log in at the "timekeeper" computer terminal at the LRC Reception Desk.

Information for Instructor:
ESL instructors may reserve the ESL Lab (L-120) in the Learning Resource Center (LRC) and Chromebook laptops (there are 32) for their course "embedded labs" via the following links:

Lab documentation, including schedules, forms, handouts, instructions, and MyEnglishLab account information can be found on the ESL Lab SharePoint site.

​Contact Us

Celia Cruz-Johnson, PhD

Dean, Language Arts

(408) 288-3719


General Education, Room 206

Full-time Faculty


Dongmei Cao


Dorothy Pucay


Leslie Rice

Leslie Takei


Patricia Do Carmo

Yevgeniya Sokolenko

Zerrin Erkal

SJCC Supporting Page
San Jose City College