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About the English Language Center


Since it was founded in 1981, the English Language Center (ELC) at Old Dominion University has taught thousands of students from nearly 100 countries. The ELC welcomes all students and is eager to assist them in pursuing personal, career and/or academic goals through their study of English.


The ELC offers full and part-time courses in English as a second language. The English Language Center's rigorous full-time Intensive English Program is designed for students who want to develop the academic English proficiency necessary to succeed in ODU's undergraduate and graduate programs. The ELC's upper-level Bridge Program combines credit bearing academic courses with noncredit courses in English. Additionally, special courses in TOEFL preparation and GRE preparation are available to upper level students.



The English Language Center is an accepted member of both AAIEP and UCIEP, professional agencies which select schools for membership based on their adherence to the highest standards of professional and academic excellence.


Student Life

Learning English can be facilitated and enriched by student participation in out-of-classroom activities. For this reason, many extracurricular activities are available such as trips to widely acclaimed museums, gardens, beach resort areas, sports, cultural events, and Washington, D.C. In addition to these outings, students are encouraged to participate in the many activities and sports events offered by the University.

The ELC also sponsors a Conversation Partner program in which international students are paired with Americans to practice their English in informal settings.

Trip to Washington D.C.

  • Admission to the ELC is open to non-native speakers of English who are 18 or older or who have high school diplomas or the equivalent.
  • Admission to the English Language Center is not admission to a degree program at Old Dominion University.
  • If you would like to also apply to a degree program at the University, contact the Office of International Admissions.