Spotlight ESOL

This page showcases the ESOL program’s strengths. Click on the tabs below to learn more about what we do, inside our classrooms and beyond!

What our students say about ESOL classes (quotes from ESOL course evaluations):

“Writing style in my country is different than the USA, this course helped me understand that difference and I have also developed my grammar and writing skills.”

“My English definitely improved. And it's not just a little bit."

“I learned how to write and think faster in my second language. My vocabulary skills improved. Now I know how to cite properly.”

"This course has been extremely effective....Before starting the course I did not feel comfortable with writing, and now,...I am not only able to write better, but motivated to write....”

“The professor taught us with different activities and made everyone in the class really close because of all of the group work. That was something really good.”

“This course and the instructor helped me to be more confident. I was afraid of a class participation and was too shy to speak something out, but [my instructor] encouraged me and taught me to be brave. This helped me not only for this class, but in every class and also in my daily life.”

Freddie and Frieda take part in an ESOL Methods class

Frieda attending an ESOL methods class

Frieda is ready to learn in an ESOL Methods class!

Students look on as Freddie and Frieda participate in an ESOL Methods class

The class looks on as Freddie and Frieda participate in class.

Freddie and Frieda participate in an ESOL Methods class

Freddie and Frieda are excited to be a part of the class!

Students look on as Freddie and Frieda participate in an ESOL Methods class

Frieda practices her writing skills!

ESOL 1010 students have participated in the University Writing Program's Writing Showcase.

At this event, students share their writing, get presentation experience, and learn more about UWP. Thanks to UWP for inviting us to celebrate writing together!

ESOLShowcase2018Mohammed Alfaraj, Ai Saito, Stephen Ohene-Larbi, Rina Suzuki, and Ziwei Ding (not pictured) present "Assessment and Multimoda Composing in Second Language Settings" at the Spring 2018 UWP Showcase. They were awarded the outstanding collaborative poster.

ESOL Showcase

ESOL students presenting on multimodality at the Spring 2017 UWP Showcase.

Students complete a variety of assignments and learn about campus resources in ESOL classes.

Assignments are designed to help students improve their language skills. Many assignments also allow students to be creative and explore topics they are interested in. ESOL students also learn about campus resources like the Language Learning Center and the Collab Lab. Some instructors design class activities or assignments using these resources. 

Some examples of assignments and student work:

In Fall 2018, International Teaching Assistants enrolled in ESOL 5040 participated in panel discussions to explore issues related to teaching in the US.

ESOL Panel 

In Spring 2017, ESOL 1010 student Rita Tavpash conducted a short survey about her ice sleeve project and wrote a report about the results. She also presented her product idea at The Hatch in April 2017, where she made a deal with investors to fund her project.

Rita Tavpash 

Pictures below showcase Academic Honesty memes that ESOL 1010 students created after learning about and researching the topic of academic honesty rules. The samples below are from Spring 2017 and Fall 2021.

Plagiarism Meme

  • The meme portrays a laid-back koala bear relaxing in the bed of leaves. The meme caption reads "I seem harmless just like plagiarism." The meme refers to the fact that despite their calm portrayal, koalas can actually be quite aggressive and violently attack other animals and even humans.

project esol 1

  • The meme illustrates a white cat impersonating Plagiarism hiding around the corner from two Dobermans impersonating professors and academic honesty policy.

Citing Meme

  • The meme depicts Yoda, a character in Star Wars, with the following caption: "No. Try not. Just cite correctly. The is no try."

project esol 2

  • The meme shows Fry, Futurama character, squinting his eyes in disbelief and confusion. the caption reads: "When your teacher tells you copy/paste is plagiarism."

World Thinking Day

On February 19, 2022, some ESOL students joined the collaborative efforts of BGSU and Girl Scouts of Western Ohio in celebration of World Thinking Day. During multiple poster session rounds, students presented to Girls Scouts and their parents about their home countries, cultures, languages, traditions, food, and more.

  • Zixi (Sissi) Fu, a student in ESOL 1010, presenting about China. In addition to the poster, Sissi also created a brochure for her audience (not pictured here) describing traditional Chinese musical instruments and other interesting facts about her home country.
  • Sairam Garimella (a student in ESOL 1010), Tejaswini Kode (a student in ESOL 5000), and Aurobi Das (a student in ESOL 5000) presenting about India. In this picture, Tejaswini Kode talks about Indian food.
  • Varun Nistala, a student in ESOL 1010, presenting about Dubai, a city in the United Arab Emirates. In this photo, Varun is pointing to and discussing the Ain Dubai, the world's tallest Ferris wheel.
  • Zixi (Sissi) Fu posing next to her poster and Chinese flag.
  • Sairam Garimella, Tejaswini Kode, and Aurobi Das, all wearing traditional Indian attire, posing next to their collaborative poster about India. Indian flag can be seen in the background.
  • Varun Nistala posing next to his poster and the flag of the United Arab Emirates.

Collaborations with International Programs and Partnerships:IPP Orientation Fall 2017

  • During International Student Orientation, the ESOL program gives a presentation about academic honesty at American universities.
  • We co-sponsor events, like an International Café at the beginning of the fall semester.
  • In June 2017, Vietnamese High School students came to BGSU for a summer camp coordinated by International Programs and Partnerships. Fernanda Capraro, Amy Cook, and Kimberly Spallinger organized an ESOL session where students participated in ice-breaker activities and a campus scavenger hunt.

Partnerships with the School of Teaching and Learning:

We have been involved in several grant-funded projects: English ACCESS Microscholarship Program, Teaching Excellence and Achievement (TEA) program, and International Research and Exchanges (IREX). These exchanges provide opportunities for educators from around the world to come to BGSU and learn from each other and from BGSU faculty.


In March 2017, the ESOL Program partnered with BGSU's College of Education and Human Development for the 2017 English ACCESS Microscholarship Program, a professional development program funded by the U.S. Department of State. Read more about this program

Participation in the Schmidthorst College of Business' dual degree program:

From Fall 2015 to Spring 2018, faculty member Lucinda Hunter taught ESOL classes in China at Tianjin Polytechnic University (TPU) in partnership with TPU and BGSU’s Schmidthorst College of Business.

Extracurricular programs for students:

Our extracurricular program, the Cross Cultural Conversation Connection (CCCC) brings together international and domestic students to promote cultural understanding through conversation.

ESOL faculty and graduate assistants are actively involved in the field of teaching English. We regularly attend conferences and other professional events to learn from others and to share the work we’re doing in our own classrooms.

For more information about faculty presentations, visit our Faculty and Staff page, then click on each faculty member’s name.

GSS Outstanding Research Assistant Award

KrysIngmanKrys Ingman, ESOL/Associability GA, wins a GSS Outstanding Research Assistant Award! Congratulations, Krys!

Learn more about the award!

TESOL International Convention

The annual Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages [TESOL] Convention is the largest professional event in our field. ESOL faculty and graduate assistants regularly attend and present.

Faculty in Zoom conference Amy Cook, Ana Kryzhanivska, Fernanda Capraro, and Kimberly Spallinger at virtual TESOL 2021
TESOL 2019
Kimberly Spallinger, Amy Cook, Ana Kryzhanivska, Fernanda Capraro, and Lucinda Hunter holding TESOL letters at TESOL 2019.


Fernanda Capraro presenting at TESOL 2018.

AnaTESOL2018Anastasia Kryzhanivska presenting at TESOL 2017.

Other Conferences and Events


Amy Cook presenting at the 2017 learning symposium hosted by Michigan State University English Language Center and National Geographic Learning.


Kimberly Spallinger with some participants from her presentations at Nam Can Tho University in Vietnam, Summer 2015.

Updated: 05/10/2022 11:50AM