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Frequently Asked Questions

When does ELI start?

ELI has three semesters. Fall and spring semesters are 16 weeks long and summer semester is 10 weeks long. For exact program dates, visit Program Dates and Costs.

What is ELI’s class schedule like?

ELI classes meet for 20 hours per week. Classes are usually scheduled between 9:10 in the morning and 5:00 in the afternoon, Monday through Friday with an hour for lunch. This schedule is subject to change.

How many students are in ELI classes?

Class size at ELI is usually between 5 and 15 students. This ensures that students receive personal attention from instructors and have ample opportunity to participate in class.

How can I apply to the University of Montana?

Students who are academically qualified can be Conditionally Admitted to the University of Montana (UM) even if they do not meet the English Language Proficiency requirement (i.e., TOEFL score). All students admitted conditionally will be required to attend ELI until they achieve one of the following English requirements:

English Language Proficiency Requirements

Test Requirement
TOEFL iBT 61 (test offered at UM)
TOEFL PBT 500 (test offered at ELI)
IELTS 5.5 (test not offered at UM or ELI)
UM English Language Institute Recommendation from UM English Language Institute

If you are interested in Conditional Admission, please visit Apply Now.

When can I get my I-20 and student visa?

ELI will issue your I-20 (which you will use to get your visa) as soon as we have received your completed ELI application and all of your supporting documents.

Once you receive your I-20 form, you will need to pay the SEVIS fee online. Then you will need to contact the Consulate Office near you and make an appointment for a student visa interview. They will inform you what you will need to bring with you to the interview. You will receive instructions on this process in your acceptance packet, or see our Next Steps video for help.

Where can I live on campus?

Through the Residence Life Office, UM offers rooms in student dormitories (dorms) or apartments. The price varies depending on the size and layout of the room. Visit the Residence Life Office to learn more about campus living.

To apply, please complete the Residence Halls application included in your acceptance packet. Campus housing is limited and the rooms fill up quickly. Students are not guaranteed housing if they have not completed the Residence Halls application and paid the non-refundable application fee.

Where can I eat on campus?

There are many places to eat on the UM campus. UM requires that all students living in residence halls purchase a meal plan. A meal plan is a pre-paid purchase of meals for the semester. Each meal plan provides you with satisfying meals without spending your precious time shopping, preparing, and cleaning up. If you live off campus, you can still apply for a Commuter Meal Plan with Dining Services. For more information on meal plans and places to eat on campus, visit UM Dining.

What kind of services does UM offer?

As a student at UM, you can find everything you need on campus. At the University Center you will find a bank, a cell phone store, a post office, a movie theater, a food court, a small market, computer labs, ATMs, student legal services, The Bookstore (selling books, class supplies, computers, and apparel), and more. UM also has a state-of-the-art gym that features a running track and climbing wall, as well as a swimming pool. With a UM student ID card (Griz Card), students can attend sporting events and ride the public buses for free. There is also a large grocery store open 24 hours a day located minutes away from campus.

Do I need health insurance?

Yes. International students on non-immigrant visas (F, J, etc.) are required to have and maintain major medical insurance while residing in the United States. Because UM requires international students to have health insurance, you will not be able to register for classes until you have submitted proof of your health insurance to ELI. You can purchase health insurance from UM. If you do not purchase health insurance from UM, you must provide proof of personal health insurance. To learn more about health insurance requirements, visit Student Insurance.

Have more questions? Contact ELI.

ELI students canoeing with their English instructor