Graduate English Language Support

instructor teaching students outside

First Year English Course Recommendations

All new international graduate students should take an English language course (LIN 25 or LIN 26) during their first academic year, unless:

  • English is the student's first or primary language; or
  • The student has a college degree from an approved English-medium institution – students must confirm this with the UC Davis Office of Graduate Studies; or
  • The student has a TOEFL (iBT) score of 105 or higher or IELTS score of 7.5 or higher; or
  • The student scored 24 or higher on the TOEFL (iBT) writing and 23 or higher on the TOEFL (iBT) speaking. 

These courses help non-native English speaking graduate students to have the language skills they need for their graduate studies. It's recommended that incoming graduate students who don't meet the above criteria sign up to take LIN 25 or LIN 26 as early as possible. Students should speak with their graduate advisors for more information about LIN 25 or LIN 26; some departments may require incoming students to enroll in one of these courses.

Graduate-Level English Language Course Descriptions

LIN 25: English for International/ESL Graduate Students (4 units)

Lecture/discussion—4 hours. A multi-skills ESL course designed to help international/ESL students improve their English language skills for successful academic study. Emphasis on writing, speaking, listening, reading, and academic culture.  

LIN 25 is strongly recommended for students with TOEFL iBT scores below 95 or speaking subset scores below 22. It is a multi-skills course that helps graduate students improve their skills and knowledge in writing, speaking, listening, reading, and academic culture. 

LIN 26: Writing for International Graduate Students (3 units)

Lecture—3 hours. Focuses on writing needed for academic work, including summaries, critiques, research and grant proposals, memos, resumes, and research papers. Includes a review of grammar needed for writing and some focus on reading skills and American vocabulary and idioms.

LIN 26 primarily focuses on the skills needed for effective academic writing and prepares students for writing conference proposals, abstracts, journal articles, dissertations, etc. LIN 26 is recommended to students who will be expected to produce written work for an academic audience. (Offered in winter and spring.)

LIN 391: Oral English for ESL Students (3 units)

Lecture—2 hours; laboratory—2 hours. Course gives non-native English-speaking students, particularly international student teaching assistants, intensive work in oral English to increase fluency, accuracy, and use of appropriate discourse strategies in academic settings (e.g., seminar, discussion, laboratory).

Supplemental content

International & Academic English Support

Graduate students can also receive language support without enrolling in a course. IAE's ITA Workshops & Seminars and Language & Culture Coaching are designed to provide students with the targeted practice they need to be successful TAs, graduate students, and future professionals.