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SPECIAL ACADEMIC PROGRAMS

The following programs offer undergraduate students opportunities for new academic experiences, hands-on or on-the-job training, and cultural exchange. All University of Alabama students are encouraged to participate in these programs as appropriate to their degree programs and personal and professional goals. Such programs offer unique ways for UA students to enrich their college experiences, build their résumés, and explore career choices.

CAPSTONE INTERNATIONAL

Dr. B. Jane Stanfield
Associate Provost for International Education and Global Outreach
Office: 135 B.B. Comer Hall
Web site: international.ua.edu

The University of Alabama provides a wide variety of international education programs and services at the Capstone International Center, housed on the first floor of B.B. Comer Hall. Known simply as Capstone International, the Capstone International Center takes its name from its historical pre-eminence in the state as a provider of international education. A combination of integrated units, the Capstone International Center has multiple complementary yet diverse functions ranging from intensive English language instruction in the English Language Institute (ELI) to U.S. immigration compliance, Fulbright programs, and overseas study. Capstone International is a multipurpose center designed to inform, assist, and educate both international and domestic students, faculty, and staff members as well as members of the local civic, education, and corporate communities. Capstone International annually welcomes almost 1,000 internationals to campus and makes possible the participation of UA faculty, students, and staff in a multitude of internationally focused degree, research, and outreach programs.

Outreach is an important function within Capstone International as evidenced by its quarterly Capstone International newsletter, the German Supplementary School (for school-age children from Germany), the Japan Culture and Information Center (a resource for both the local and academic communities), and the English Language Institute (on-site corporate programs and tailored courses for usage by children and spouses of the employees). A wide variety of international student activities are coordinated in conjunction with the Rotary International Club of Tuscaloosa, Tuscaloosa’s International Friends (TIF), and the Children’s Hands-on Museum (CHOM).

The University is a member of national organizations providing congressional support, professional training, and annual conferences to promote international education at member universities, namely NAFSA: Association for International Educators, the Institute for International Education (IIE), the Association for International Education Administrators (AIEA), the European Association for International Education (EAIE), and the Council for International Education Exchange (CIEE).

Capstone International has four functional focal points known as Academic Programs, Community and Corporate Outreach, International Services, and English Language Institute. Collectively they provide courses and activities available to the constituents of The University of Alabama community.

Academic Programs

Community and Corporate Outreach

International Services

English Language Institute

ACADEMIC PROGRAMS

Fulbright programs. Capstone International encourages and facilitates active participation in all Fulbright programs. Since the founding of the Fulbright programs in 1948, approximately 125 UA students, faculty, and professional staff members have been selected to receive the prestigious Fulbright award. Their appointments have ranged from Austria to Zimbabwe (A to Z). More information is available from the CIC, 135 B.B. Comer Hall, (205) 348-5312, or fax (205) 348-5298.

Global Studies Certificate (GSC) Program. The University of Alabama Global Studies Certificate Program is designed to introduce the undergraduate student to the cultural, economic, physical, and political aspects of being a world citizen in the 21st century. The program emphasizes the contemporary rather than the historical. Nine hours of the program are specified as GSC core, usually lower division, and must be taken prior to the six Emphasis Area hours, usually upper division.

The Introduction to Global Studies (CIP 200) course must be taken first in the sequence of GSC Core and Emphasis Area courses, but the remaining GSC Core courses and the following Emphasis Area courses may be taken in any order. The introductory course will set the philosophy for the student’s approach to the entire Global Studies Certificate Curriculum, both core and upper division, Emphasis Area courses.

Students must successfully complete 15 hours of coursework as specified below. Some courses may have prerequisites. Candidates for the certificate must complete an application form before the certificate can be awarded. Application forms are available in the Capstone International Center, Room 135 B.B. Comer Hall, and must be completed and submitted no later than the semester prior to the semester of graduation.

*ANT 412, ANT 413, ANT 414, ANT 415, ANT 416, and ANT 417 are offered according to demand.

International academic exchange programs. The University of Alabama offers a number of international exchange programs that allow students to act as visiting scholars at overseas universities. Each program gives students opportunities to learn in a foreign country where they obtain first hand knowledge of another people, language, and culture in addition to gaining course credits. In some cases, a working knowledge of the language of the host country is a prerequisite. In others, the language can be studied for the first time in the host country; sometimes, no language requirement is necessary (e.g., England and Australia). Students pay University of Alabama tuition based on residency and are assisted in arranging transfer of credits through appropriate departments and divisions prior to departure.

International exchange programs are available to UA students at the following partner universities for either one or two semesters and, in some cases, summer study:

Short-term academic group overseas study. In addition to its longer-term international exchange programs, The University of Alabama conducts many overseas study programs lasting from two to six weeks, most often during the summer and Interim sessions. Scholarships and financial aid are available to students participating in these programs. Programs and fields of study in recent years include the following:

Affiliate Programs. The University of Alabama offers programs through third party program providers every year and students continually have positive feedback on their experiences with these providers. Students participating in these programs can use their UA scholarships and financial aid for funding. Also, students do not pay UA tuition but pay the program fee charged by the program provider and additional expenses including but not limited to travel, personal, meals, visa, housing expenses, etc. A list of UA’s Affiliate Programs can be found online at studyabroad.ua.edu.

International University Programs. Students at the University of Alabama have the opportunity to spend a summer, semester, or academic year at one of the International Universities. Participants in these programs can use their UA scholarships and financial aid for funding. Also, students do not pay UA tuition but pay the cost of attending the International University. A list of International University programs can be found online at studyabroad.ua.edu.

Capstone International now provides upgraded International Student Identity Cards (ISIC), the ISIC Platinum. Issued by STA Travel, the ISIC Platinum provides international insurance coverage ($1 million in accident and sickness coverage for travel worldwide and a toll-free 24-hour help line for medical, mental, legal, and financial emergencies abroad) in addition to many other discount rates for transportation, educational, and cultural programs and services.

Additional information about any international study program may be obtained from studyabroad.ua.edu, 135 B.B. Comer Hall or by writing The University of Alabama, Capstone International, Box 870254, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0254; (205) 348-5256. If The University of Alabama is unable to meet the overseas study needs of a student, Capstone International provides information about additional international education opportunities available through study abroad at other institutions and organizations.

COMMUNITY AND CORPORATE OUTREACH

German Supplementary School. Established by The University of AlabaGerman Supplementary School. Established by The University of Alabama in 1995 in cooperation with Mercedes-Benz U.S. International Inc., the German Supplementary School provides supplementary education in German to children ages six to 16 who will return to a German-speaking educational system after living in Alabama for several years. In addition to providing education to German-speaking children, the GSS provides University of Alabama students who have an interest and proficiency in German language and culture the opportunity to work with GSS in a variety of ways. More information is available from the CIC, 135 B.B. Comer Hall, (205) 348-5312, or fax (205) 348-5298.

Sakura Festival. Capstone International organizes the annual spring Sakura Festival and Haiku contest for the state of Alabama.

Japan Program. Reciprocal student exchange programs with Kansai Gaidai University in Osaka, Ritsumeikan University, Hiroshima University, and Chiba University enable qualified undergraduate students to study Japanese in Japan while undertaking Asian studies, humanities, social science, and science courses taught in English. Generous AIE-J scholarships providing round-trip transportation and a monthly stipend are available on a competitive basis to UA students. Gilman and Freeman-ASIA scholarships for students on financial aid is also available. Examples of courses offered at partner institutions include Japanese-Style Management, Japanese Economic Development, Sociology of Everyday Life in Japan, Survey of Modern Japanese History, Japanese Culture and Education, Seminar in Geography, Agriculture and Agricultural Sciences in Japan, and Introduction to Deep-Sea Biology. For students who have already earned undergraduate degrees, Chiba University offers prestigious Monbusho (Ministry of Education) research scholarships for 18 months of study. The Monbusho scholarship provides round-trip transportation and monthly stipends to cover living costs.

Additional information about the Japan Program may be obtained from Capstone International, 135 B.B. Comer Hall, (205) 348-5312.

Japan Culture and Information Center. Established by The University of Alabama as part of the Japan Program in 1990, the Japan Culture and Information Center (JCIC) serves as a meeting place and clearinghouse for information about Japan and its culture.

Additional information about programs at the Japan Culture and Information Center may be obtained from Capstone International, 135 B.B. Comer Hall, (205) 348-5312 or fax (205) 348-5298.

INTERNATIONAL SERVICES

International Services, located within the Capstone International Center of The University of Alabama, provides specialized services for international students, professors, research scholars, visitors, and their families. International Services conducts intensive orientation programs and provides vital information regarding U.S. Immigration compliance as well as multicultural guidance and counseling. These are ongoing services that monitor individual progress according to Department of Homeland Security regulations.

Professional staff members advise and assist the International Student Association, which represents all international students and the many nationality organizations on campus.

International Services may be contacted by telephone at (205) 348-5402, by fax at (205) 348-5406, and by mail at The University of Alabama, International Services, Box 870254, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0254, USA. Offices are located in 105 B.B. Comer Hall.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE INSTITUTE (ELI)

For the non-native speaker of English, the University of Alabama English Language Institute (ELI), a part of Capstone International, offers two types of year-round English-language programs: The Intensive English Program is designed for individuals who are seeking intensive English study, while External Programs are designed for groups who desire highly specialized curricula. In addition, the ELI has two programs for matriculated students at The University of Alabama: the International Teaching Assistant Program, which trains and evaluates international graduate teaching assistants, and the Academic Support Program, which provides opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students who may want or need additional English-language instruction.

Intensive English Program

The ELI Intensive English Program (IEP) is designed for individuals who need to learn English as a second language. The program focuses on preparing students for academic success, both in English-language proficiency and cultural awareness, for undergraduate and graduate study at The University of Alabama.

Six levels of study, from beginning to advanced, are available. Each level consists of 20 hours of core classes per week; additional optional classes are also available for students who wish to take them. Each level of study lasts approximately eight weeks and is available six times per year with sessions beginning in August, October, January, March, May, and June. Students may begin their English study at the beginning of any one of these sessions.

An ELI student wishing to enter an undergraduate degree program at The University of Alabama may meet UA’s English proficiency requirements either by obtaining the required TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) score or by completing Level 6 with a GPA of 3.0 in Levels 4, 5, and 6. Undergraduates who meet certain conditions (minimum TOEFL score and GPA) become eligible to enroll in undergraduate courses while completing their ELI program of study. The number of UA courses that an eligible student may take is determined by the ELI. Students pursuing graduate study must complete Levels 4, 5, and 6 with a GPA of 3.5. In certain cases, the Graduate School, the ELI, and the student’s academic department may together grant permission for a student who has completed Level 4 or higher with a minimum GPA of 3.5 to enroll in one graduate course per semester while completing the ELI program of study. The specific course must be approved by the instructor and department prior to enrollment.

Students who apply for admission to UA and meet the academic and financial qualifications to enter the University but do not have TOEFL scores available or do not meet the TOEFL score requirement may be admitted conditionally or provisionally. Such students will not be eligible to begin an academic program and will be required to register for full-time study in ELI until they meet the TOEFL requirement or satisfactorily complete the ELI program as outlined above.

ELI Intensive English Program Courses

Structure: Levels 1 to 6. Structure courses provide students with the basic grammatical structures they will need to communicate effectively in English in four language skill areas: listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Each structure course emphasizes communication—both comprehension (listening and reading) and production (speaking and writing). Structure courses meet 5 hours per week.

Speaking/Listening: Levels 1 to 6. ELI courses in Speaking/Listening English provide students with the opportunity to improve their listening and speaking skills and to gain confidence in using English to communicate orally. Students practice appropriate conversation management skills, receive instruction on problem areas of pronunciation, and learn useful vocabulary. These activities are carried on through a variety of classroom exercises that focus on the everyday situations students are likely to encounter while adjusting to life in the United States. Speaking/Listening courses meet 6 hours per week.

Reading/Writing: Levels 1 to 6. The Reading/Writing curriculum of the English Language Institute is designed to provide students with both the skills and the practice that are necessary for them to develop satisfactory reading and writing skills in English and eventually to function successfully in U.S. university courses where extensive academic reading and essay writing are required. Skill instruction and accessible, varied, and challenging tasks invite students to invest their time and energy in constructing meaning from written texts, responding to those texts, and producing writings of their own. Students will acquire new vocabulary and develop effective reading strategies for different types of tests. Working on closely related reading and writing assignments, students will develop proficiency in understanding what they read and in thinking, drafting, and revising their own ideas by working through the writing process with input from their classmates and teachers. Reading/Writing courses meet 9 hours per week.

Oral Communication. Oral Communication (OC) is designed to help students improve their skills and proficiency in both speaking and understanding oral English. Students’ oral proficiency in English will improve as a result of a variety of classroom tasks and activities. In addition, instructional activities will occasionally take place outside of the classroom in order to take advantage of opportunities in community settings. Oral Communication is divided into two separate eight-week sessions—OC I and OC II—each of which meets for 9 hours per week.

Optional Classes. The ELI offers several choices of optional courses. Some examples of optional courses are TOEFL Preparation, Pronunciation, American Culture, Current Events, Business English, English Through Current Events, and English Through Music. Optional classes typically meet 2-3 hours per week.

Culturally Speaking. Through the Culturally Speaking class, ELI students meet regularly with American students to converse in English in relaxed surroundings. Culturally Speaking provides a comfortable way for ELI students to form friendships with American students and to practice their English.

Culture and Language Exchange Program. The Culture and Language Exchange Program matches the ELI students with UA students who are studying the ELI student’s native language. Once matched, these pairs or groups of students then meet as often as they like for conversation practice in both English and in the particular foreign language.

ELI External Programs

ELI External Programs consist of a variety of programs designed for groups of participants with mutual goals and concerns who desire highly specialized, intensive curricula. Such programs are typically designed for international English teachers, students whose international universities have approved given curricula for credit, international graduate students preparing to enter universities throughout the United States, and business professionals who wish to improve their overall effectiveness in English or to concentrate on specific skills such as written communication.

An organization wishing to participate in such a program should clearly define the goals of its group and keep in mind that program enrollments typically require a minimum of 10 participants. Financial sponsorship for the above programs may come from ministries of education, embassies, corporations, private philanthropic organizations, U.S. or other government sponsoring agencies, or the individual participants themselves. Programs may be offered at any time of the year and typically range in length from two to six weeks.

A second type of external program is the corporate short-term program for individuals from a single corporation who participate in a curriculum composed partially of courses in the ELI Intensive English Program and partially of specialized courses designed specifically for the participants. These programs are offered as needed throughout the year.

A third type of external program may be offered on-site at the corporation or university. As with all external programs, dates can be customized and curricula can be specially designed for the particular group.

ELI External Program Curricula

International University Undergraduate Program. This program typically offers one or two levels of instruction for the group and consists of four hours of instruction per day, five days per week. Courses offered can include Spoken English, Pronunciation, Reading/Vocabulary, Writing, Structure, Computer Skills, American Culture, and English through Music or Film.

English Teacher Training Program. This program is designed for non-native speakers who are teachers of English. The curriculum typically consists of courses in conversational management, debate, listening and speaking, pronunciation, and public speaking, as well as a teaching workshop and series of methodology lectures. This curriculum can be adjusted to meet the needs of a particular group of English teachers. The program aims to further refine the teacher’s own usage and to address and evaluate current theories of methodology in light of the country’s unique challenges in teaching English. These courses meet four to six hours daily.

Academic Support Program

The ELI Academic Support Program provides opportunities for UA undergraduate and graduate students who may want or need additional English-language instruction. At the undergraduate level, newly admitted international students, after taking the UA English Proficiency and Placement Exam (EPPE) prior to beginning their first semester at UA, may be asked to take one or two ELI courses in spoken and/or written English on a part-time basis. These students may pursue their academic studies while fulfilling their EPPE requirements. Students must pass the designated ELI Speaking/Listening or Academic Writing course(s) before enrolling in the University’s required English courses for credit. In addition, the UA Language Resource Center is available for individualized language assistance.

To obtain more information about any of the above ELI programs, to request a brochure and application for the Intensive English Program, or to discuss the possibility of an external program for your group, contact the University of Alabama English Language Institute, Box 870250, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0250; (205) 348-7413; fax (205) 348-9266; e-mail info@eli.ua.edu. Also please visit our Web site at eli.ua.edu.

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