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ESOL English Course for Adult

English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL or ESL) refers to the acquisition of English as an additional language by people from non-English-speaking backgrounds.

English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL ) learners can be broadly described as those adults who use a first language other than English at home (and elsewhere), but who have learning needs relating to English language. The term ESOL is widely recognised in New Zealand. Some people prefer to use the term EAL (English as an Additional Language). Both terms recognise that for many learners, English may well be one of several languages they know and use.


ESOL learners are an extremely diverse group with widely varying experiences and proficiencies in language, literacy and numeracy. While many may be literate and/or numerate in their first language, many others may not, or may have specific areas of competence that can transfer to learning in English.

The two most critical variables that distinguish new learners of English from their English-speaking peers are differences in prior knowledge (including cultural knowledge) and differences in English language proficiency.

The teaching of English to students for whom English is not a first language is a central export education activity and an important element in the success of the whole industry. The quality of ESOL provision is essential if students are able to participate successfully in the New
Zealand school curriculum and interact socially with New Zealand students and within thewider New Zealand community.

For more information, please visit out ESOL Literacy Website:





Waikato Institute of Education
Address: 103 London Street,
PO Box 773, Hamilton, New Zealand
Phone: 64 - 7 - 8382450   Fax: 64 - 7 - 838 2453