About the Program

Our Mission

The Intensive English Program complements the mission of St. Mary’s University to educate leaders for the common good by creating opportunities for improved communications between peoples from different societies and cultures, since communication is the cornerstone of understanding and understanding is essential for leadership.

Program Description

The Intensive English Program at St. Mary’s has three levels: Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced. Each level has 12 weeks of instruction with 18 hours of coursework and ten hours of lab work each week. This equals 336 total hours of instruction at each level. Coursework includes Listening/Speaking, Writing, Reading, and Grammar instruction. Participants can take all courses within a level or select the courses that best meet their needs and interests. Participants take an assessment test in order to determine which level best fits their needs. Participants take this test on the first day of class. A Certificate of Completion will be awarded to participants who successfully complete the Advanced level.

Participants who are not pursuing the Certificate of Completion will not be required to complete all 336 hours of instruction in any one level and will select courses based upon interest and ability. The classes cover listening/speaking, writing, reading/vocabulary, grammar, and critical thinking/study skills. Additional individual support will be provided by qualified tutors at St. Mary’s Learning Assistance Center. Class size will be limited to a maximum of 10 participants.

For prospective students, the IEP curriculum prepares students for college-level programs; hence, the IEP is an option for those international students who do not have the required TOEFL/IELTS scores necessary for admission to St. Mary’s or other institutions of higher education where English is the primary language of instruction.

San Antonio is the seventh largest city in the United States and is rich with history and entertainment.  You will be encouraged to practice your English speaking skills on various outings around the city.  The world famous San Antonio Riverwalk, The Alamo, Fiesta Texas, Sea World, Tower of Americas, and the San Antonio Zoo are just a few of the many sights of interest that the Intensive English Program will make available to you during your stay.

Why IEP at St. Mary’s?

St. Mary’s University, a private Catholic, Marianist University, is the first institution of higher learning in San Antonio and the oldest Catholic university in Texas and the Southwest. A nationally recognized liberal arts institution with a diverse student population of nearly 4,000 of all faiths and backgrounds, St. Mary’s provides an ideal setting for an Intensive English Program. Located on 135 acres northwest of downtown San Antonio, the campus of St. Mary’s is a comfortable environment for learning but is also convenient for those who want to explore the lively and interesting city. St. Mary’s serves the various communities of San Antonio, the Southwest, the nation and the world through the intellectual, spiritual, moral, and professional leadership of its faculty, administration, staff, and students.