Two adults outside working on a computer

English Language Acquisition (ELA)

Free English Language Acquisition (ELA) classes develop your conversation, listening and speaking, reading and writing skills. Get more involved in your community, gain skills for improved employment and further your educational opportunities through COD's ELA program. Classes and books are free. 

Program Information

There are seven course levels, beginning through high to intermediate. Classes meet four to 10 hours per week online and at more than 25 locations throughout the district during the morning, afternoon and evening.


All ELA students are required to complete a placement test prior to starting their classes. Find a testing location.

ELA Students

Martha Santillan and family

College of DuPage ELA student Martha Santillan (second from left, pictured with her mother, daughter and son) passed her citizenship interview and test, becoming a United States Citizen in April 2023.

Students working in ELA class

Students working on English assignments.

Students working in ELA class

ELA instructor teaching students how to accept criticism gracefully.

Teacher in front of class

ELA Instructor working with with ELA students.

Share your contact information with us if you would like additional information on upcoming course offerings.

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After Completing ELA

Once you've successfully completed the ELA program, you may:

Prepare for College-level Classes

Students can register in the Academic English Language Studies (ELS) program to obtain the English skills necessary to take college-level classes and start a degree program.

Achieve High School Equivalency

The Adult Basic Education (ABE)/High School Equivalency (HSE) program allows students lacking a high school diploma to build their reading, writing and math skills in order to pass the exam to obtain a high school equivalency certificate.

Pursue a New Career Path

College of DuPage offers numerous certificate programs which, upon completion, provide the qualifications necessary to obtain employment in industries such as healthcare, information technology, criminal justice or hospitality.

Academic English Language Studies (ELS)

The Academic ELS program provides English language instruction for students whose native language is not English. For Academic ELS, call (630) 942-2047 or email  

I-DEA Model of Learning

IDEA program students in class

Watch how students are using technology to learn the English language.

Contact Information

Adult Education and ELA Office
Student Resource Center (SRC), Room 1110
(630) 942-3697

Kristy Tomaszewski
Coordinator, Student Services

If you are attempting to register for a class, leave a message and Adult Education staff will return your call as soon as possible. You can also reach us by email at or at any time.