CESL Receives First Accreditation

April 22, 2005

The Center for English as a Second Language of the University of Arizona recently received full, five-year accreditation from the Commission on English Language Program Accreditation (CEA). It is the center's first accreditation.

To earn accreditation, the UA center had to demonstrate that all aspects of its full-time English as a Second Language program met rigorous CEA standards. CESL is the only accredited intensive English program in the state of Arizona and one of 49 accredited programs nationwide.

"CESL's earning full CEA accreditation is an honor for us," said Suzanne Panferov, director of CESL. "We worked for more than two years to complete the process and are thrilled with the results.

"National CEA accreditation is important as it validates through rigorous peer review the top quality of our academics and student services and it serves as a quality criterion for students and embassies in selecting English language programs and issuing visas. This combined will attract more students to The University of Arizona and further strengthen the quality of international students on campus," said Panferov.

CESL began as a summer program in 1968 and turned into a year-round program in 1970. It continues to offer instruction during the academic year, the summer, during the May and December intersession and also provides special programs upon request. More than 320 students each year attend the full-time program of intensive English study, and nearly 200 students per year attend the part-time, evenings and Saturdays program.

CESL's mission is it to provide superior English language instruction to native speakers of other languages through a state-of-the-art curriculum and a productive learning environment that prepares students for academic and professional success at the UA and in the future. It also serves the linguistic and professional development needs of the UA and encourages respect for cultural and linguistic diversity through sensitivity and collaboration both on and off campus to promote worldwide cultural understanding.

The center is a member of the National Association for Foreign Student Affairs (NAFSA); Association of International Educators; UCIEP, which is a consortium of college intensive English programs in the United States; and American Association of Intensive English Programs.