English as a Second Language (ESL) Center


The ESL Center provides one-on-one tutoring and support for the ESL students of our community. We have one-hour sessions. You can sign up for sessions in the ESL Center, or by calling and scheduling an appointment. We usually work with our clients in conversation, pronunciation, written and verbal communication and American culture.  We also provide support and practice for the Graduate Exemption Test (GET) and Speaking Proficiency English Assessment Kit (SPEAK) tests. Our tutors are experienced ESL/EFL TAs, instructors and professors from NIU.

Please call 815-753-6637, email at niueslcenter@niuits.onmicrosoft.com, or come in to Reavis 306B to schedule an appointment.

We hope to be able to serve as many clients as possible with limited hours for tutoring. In order to meet the demands that ESL Center Clients have, we ask you to follow these policies:

  • You may sign up for only ONE HOUR in any week.*(Please consult with your tutor to see if there is room in the schedule for additional visits in one week).
  • You MUST provide a phone number each time you sign up.
  • If you miss three sessions without letting us know 24 hours in advance, your future appointments will be cancelled and given to another client.

Thank you for your help in allowing us to assist as many clients as we can!

Before you schedule a SPEAK test, please be sure to get a practice test from the ESL Center. If your department has sent you a practice booklet, it may be out of date. Schedule a time to have at least one practice session with a tutor. After you've had a chance to look at the practice test and have had sufficient practice, please sign up for the test by emailing Laura Bird  (lbird@niu.edu). Check with your department to see if it is you or the department who is responsible for the payment of the $50 dollar fee. SPEAK test results will be forwarded to your department within one week of the test.

The ESL Center has a number of resources including a small library of books and materials. Please feel free to come by and use our library.  

NIU Online Resources:

Contact us

Northern Illinois University
Department of English
Reavis Hall, Room 215
DeKalb, IL 60115

815-753-0606 (Fax)