Phone: 206.239.4780
 

FAQ

slide2Will I speak frequently in class?

WAL students have the chance to speak all day long. You will talk about personal experiences. You will also talk about and orally summarize information gained through reading, listening and writing activities. You will engage in group discussions and debates and you will have a chance to do individual short speeches.

When can I start school?

WAL has new Intensive English Program terms beginning every five weeks. You must study for the full term.  You can continue studying until you reach the level of English that is useful for you.

What is the average class size in the Intensive English Program?

The average class size varies each term.  The maximum size of a class in the Intensive English Program is 15 students.

When should I arrive for class?

We recommend that you arrive in Seattle at least two days before the New Student Orientation begins. This will give you time to take care of registration, placement testing and allow you to attend New Student Orientation before classes start.

How will you choose my level?

You will take a placement test when you arrive in Seattle. This test has grammar, reading, writing, speaking and listening sections. You will be placed in the level that fits with your test results. The placement test helps us to learn how to help you in the best way.

How can I finish the English program more quickly?

Practice, practice, practice! Students who use English as much as possible both in AND out of class will make faster progress. How quickly you learn English depends on your personal learning ability, motivation, previous experience in learning another language, and willingness to learn about and adapt to another culture. You will learn English more quickly if you remember to participate often in class and practice often outside of class. Remember, your success is up to you!

How can I meet Americans and practice English outside of class?

WAL has many ways to help you practice your English outside of class. You can join our school activities, volunteer at a community organization and meet with a conversation partner. WAL has many Americans studying here to learn other languages. Many students sign up for our Conversation Partner Program which matches international students and native English speakers for conversational language and cultural exchanges. This is a great way to practice your English and meet a new friend–someone who has a genuine interest in you and your culture. Many international students also participate in some kind of volunteer activity. Volunteering is one way to meet Americans and get involved in the Seattle community. Sample volunteer activities include helping at an after-school children’s program, nursing home, hospital or special festival.  Conversation Partner and volunteer programs are free of charge at WAL.

Will I be able to meet students from other countries?

Yes! WAL has students from many countries and new students arrive to join classes each term. WAL has had students from Mexico and Central America, South America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Students often keep contact with friends they meet at WAL. It is also a great way to prepare for speaking English with people from around the world!

Will you help me to transfer to a college or university?

WAL has professional staff members who are happy to talk with you about going to a college or university, technical school or any kind of special training institution anywhere in the United States. Special expertise is available about Washington State schools. Help is available in understanding the U.S. system of education, admissions deadlines, requirements for entrance and study, study majors, application process, arranging interviews with school personnel or in answering any questions you may have. WAL has transfer relationships with many schools, colleges, and universities that allow you to enter the college program without a TOEFL score if you successfully complete level 6.

Do I need a student visa if I only want to study for one session?

The visa you use to enter the US should match your reason for coming and is not based on how long you plan to stay. If your MAIN reason for coming to the US is to be a student, you should apply for a student visa.

How do I apply for a student visa?

The first step is to apply for admission to Washington Academy of Languages at City University of Seattle. Once we receive all of your application materials, we will issue the documents you need from our school to apply for the F-1 student visa.  WAL is authorized under to enroll non-immigrant students.  You apply for a student visa at the US embassy or consulate nearest your home. Required documents vary. For more information, please see the web site listed below: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/study/student-visa.html#overview

How long will it take to get my I-20?

Delivery time varies depending on which mailing option you choose. If you would like us to send your documents by express mail or courier service, please contact us about additional costs.

What is SEVIS?

See this website for more information:  http://www.ice.gov/sevis

I heard there is a fee attached to SEVIS. Is that true?

Yes.  The SEVIS I-901 fee went into effect September 1, 2004. Look at the payment website at https://www.fmjfee.com/. New students with a Form I-20 are required to pay the fee.  For more information, see http://www.ice.gov/sevis/students

Why do I need medical (health) insurance?

F-1 visa holders are required to have medical insurance while in the U.S. Each individual must pay the cost of any medical appointment or treatment, which is very expensive. With insurance, you only need to pay a small part of any medical appointment or treatment out of your pocket. You may buy insurance for traveling from your home country or buy student insurance coverage through WAL. If you buy insurance for travel in the US in your home country, make sure your coverage is enough to cover all kinds of medical visits.  Email wal@cityu.edu for more information about coverage minimums.