NC State
Intensive English Program

The Intensive English Program (IEP) is more than an English program.  It is your gateway to academic America!   Students conditionally admitted to the IEP begin classes in their major immediately after completing the program.  No additional TOEFL or IELTS scores are required.

Your Gateway to Academic America

Not only do our students build a strong foundation in Academic English, they also learn valuable life skills that prepare them for life in and out of the American classroom.  American culture is also taught in a special class where students work with mentors who are currently enrolled in degree programs NC State.  These student mentors provide valuable tips and insights into American culture, life in the United States, classroom technology and expectations of American professors.
Whether you plan to continue at NC State or another university, the IEP can help you to reach your academic goals by providing the advanced level English skills and cultural understanding you will need.

 A High TOEFL or IELTS score is NOT the best predictor of academic success– completion of the IEP is!

While a TOEFL or IELTS score is an important indicator of English proficiency, it does not predict how well students are able to perform in the American classroom.  These tests measure English skills at a given point in time.   Students who study in the IEP live and learn completely in English.  Tasks and activities that you do in the IEP will be similar to tasks and activities that you do in the undergraduate or graduate classroom.
Research has shown that the best predictor of academic success for international students is how well they do in their English classes over a period of time.
In fact, the average Grade Point Average (GPA) of students enrolled at NC State who went through our IEP first is a 3.23.  That is higher than the average GPA of traditional students at NC State.

American classrooms are different– the IEP will help you adjust

American classes are very interactive with a lot of discussion among students and professors.  Students are expected to have and share their opinions with the entire class.  You will need to be able to work comfortably with groups to complete projects. You will also have to give presentations in front of your classmates.    In the IEP, you will gain experience and become comfortable with pair work, group work, class presentations, and sharing your opinions.  Your instructors will teach you strategies for success.
And if you make a mistake, that is completely OK!  We in the IEP understand that making mistakes is a part of language learning and a sign that you are actually making progress!

Strong English Preparation in the IEP = Fewer language problems + Less Academic frustration

Studying in the IEP is an investment in your future.    If you understand English well and are able to use it, you will be able to focus on the content of your academic courses as an
undergraduate or graduate student rather than focusing on the language itself.  Since all IEP courses are non-credit, failing a course in the IEP will not harm your GPA.  However, undergraduate and graduate students with poor language skills are in danger of failing their credit classes.  Failing credit classes will hurt your GPA and cause you to waste time AND money.  It can also hurt your immigration status.  It’s much smarter to invest your time and money in your English studies BEFORE taking credit classes.  

Our students agree – the IEP is a BIG help!

Our former students say the IEP helped them to:
  • communicate confidently
  • feel like they already belonged at NC State
  • develop a social network for future projects
  • know what American professors expect
  • use classroom technology
  • understand how different cultures think
  • accomplish more academically in less time