English Language Center

BYU English Language Center

Student Handbook

The Mission of BYU's English Language Center

As a lab school, the English Language Center supports BYU's Department of Linguistics by facilitating the teaching, learning, and research of English as a second language. The ELC achieves this mission by:

  1. Providing BYU students with opportunities to apply university study in practical contexts and to develop excellence in English language teaching, tutoring, curriculum design, materials development, technology use, assessment, evaluation, and research.
  2. Providing ELC students with the highest quality teaching of foundational and academic English in a research-based curriculum.
  3. Sharing our scholarship by presenting and publishing our relevant experience, research, and resources for the benefit of others.


This handbook is for students at BYU’s English Language Center. It includes very important information to help students learn English successfully while they are at the ELC. As a student at the ELC, you are expected to understand and follow these policies. If you have questions about anything related to your experience at the ELC, consult this handbook.

This handbook is organized by topics or themes. Entries are alphabetized under each topic. Other places you can go for help include the following:

  1. Your teachers can answer questions about your class work, your participation, your tests, or your scores and grades.
  2. Arwen Wyatt and the office workers in UPC 103 (801-422-3137; arwen_wyatt@byu.edu) can address many questions about class schedules, buying or renting books, ELC activities, Study Buddies.
  3. Sandy Hatchett in UPC 103 (801-422-5318; sandy_hatchett@byu.edu) can answer many questions about attendance, student employment and student life issues. She will meet with students who have problems with attendance and low citizenship.
  4. Anna Bailey and the office workers in JFSB 4056 (801-422-2691; elcsec@byu.edu) can answers questions about Admissions to the ELC, visas, I-20 forms, immigration issues, vacations, transferring to other schools, withdrawing from school, medical leaves, ELC tuition.

Building & Facilities

The ELC at BYU is located in the University Parkway Center (UPC) building and is one of the finest facilities for learning English as a second language in the world.


If you ride a bicycle to school, wear a helmet and watch out for cars since they may not see you.  Lock your bike in the rack located in the parking lot east of the UPC building; do not attach it to the railings around the building or it may be removed by the police.

LICENSING YOUR BICYCLE - All bicycles should have a Provo City bike license. You can get a license for $1.00 from the Provo Police Department, 351 West Center Street, Provo, UT  84601 (801-852-6232) or from the BYU Traffic Office, 2120 JKB (801-422-3906). You will need the following: (1) The make, model, and serial number of the bicycle, (2) The different components on the bike such as handle bar style, the number of speeds, lock, wheel size, water bottle, etc., (3) Your name, permanent address, and phone number.

Bulletin Boards

Flyers, advertisements, and posters are allowed on bulletin boards only if they have been authorized.  If you would like to put something on a bulletin board, please talk with a secretary in Room 103.

Cars and Parking

If you have a car you must register your car with the university. This will allow you to park in designated parking areas near the ELC. You can do this by logging in to MyBYU. Click on the link that says "Miscellaneous" and then select "Parking Registration." When you put in your information, your car will be registered. Please note: you will not receive a parking sticker—your license plate is your parking "permit."

Do not park in unauthorized lots; if you do, you will receive a parking ticket and you will have to pay a fine. Failing to register your car can also result in receiving a ticket.

Summary of parking areas near the UPC:

U-LOT (shown in blue—north of the UPC)
Free to all registered vehicles

Y-LOT (shown in yellow—east of UPC, near the Museum)
Parking for students who have registered their car and paid the fee

A-LOT (shown in read—just east of the UPC)
For staff and Employees—NO STUDENT PARKING

VISITOR LOT (shown in red east of the Museum)
For visitors only—NO STUDENT PARKING

Children at the ELC

Children (non-students between the ages of 0-17 years) cannot come to the ELC except under certain conditions as specified

  1. Under NO condition should children be brought to the ELC during instruction time. This policy applies to teachers and students.
  2. Children are not allowed in the computer lab or SASC.
  3. Children cannot be in the public areas of the building (hallways, lobbies, chapels, gym or classrooms) unless accompanied by an adult.
  4. Children are permitted to attend ELC activities if it clearly states that children or families may participate, and only then, if accompanied by and adult.

Computer Lab and Self-Access Study Center (SASC)

The computer lab and SASC have tutors, equipment, and software to help you learn English, such as books, movies, and CDs.  There are also programs to help you prepare for standardized examinations, such as the TOEFL and GRE tests.

The following rules apply to both the computer lab and the SASC:

  1. No food or drink is allowed in the computer lab or SASC at any time
  2. Students must speak quietly and show respect to all lab teachers and fellow students
  3. Students should speak English. Students who break the rules will be asked to leave and may lose their privileges to use the computer lab or SASC.

Computer Lab Rules:

  1. Never “save” computers with personal belongings (e.g. coats, bags, etc.). If you are gone for more than 5 minutes, your things will be removed so others can use the equipment. Please go to Room 103 to find your abandoned belongings.
  2. Do not violate copyright laws. It is illegal to duplicate or download copyrighted material (e.g. TOEFL CDs, books, videos, music, etc.).
  3. Labs are closed between classes and may not be used during class without your teacher present.
  4. Prepare to leave 10 minutes before the lab closes. (Return materials, print documents, save work, etc.).

General Lab Schedule

Monday-Friday 7:30 am - 5:00 pm

SASC Rules

  1. Never write in any materials you check out.
  2. Never take TOEFL materials or DVDs home.
  3. Return checked-out materials on time (e.g. library books, TOEFL materials, etc.). If you don’t, you will be charged a late fee. All fees must be paid before you can take the LATs (final exams).
  4. To meet with a tutor, sign up for one in advance online at elc.byu.edu/tutoring. Tutors may not be scheduled more than 2 days in advance. Don’t expect the writing tutors to correct all of your paper. Ask them to help you with one or two areas (e.g. organization, transitions, etc.).
  5. If you bring your own movie to watch on the computers, it cannot be R-rated.


Students using computers to study English have priority over students doing personal tasks such as emailing, chatting, surfing, etc. Never use the Internet to look at pornography or any other material in violation of the honor code.

Never let other people log in to the computers using your Net ID and password. Sensitive personal information is tied to your Net ID and password. You could be the victim of financial identity theft or be accused of misusing university computer resources. If you are unable to log in to a computer either at the ELC or up on campus, ask a lab attendant for help.

Be sure to save or back up your work often. To do this, please purchase a USB flash drive (or jump drive) and put your name and contact information on it so it can be returned if it gets lost. They can be purchased at the Bookstore for around $10-15, and you will be able to use them at the ELC as well as all other computer labs on campus.


You need to put money on your Signature Card Account in order to print. This can be done through MyBYU (my.byu.edu) by making a credit card payment. Black and white prints cost 7¢ per page and color prints cost 25¢ per page. You must use your ID card to print. The lab attendants will NOT print for you.


The ELC provides lockers for its students free of charge.  You may request a locker assignment in room 103.  It is a good idea to put your coat, books and bags in your locker to keep them safe rather than leaving them unattended in a classroom or hallway. Please do not leave food in your locker overnight.

Lost and Found

If you find something that does not belong to you, put it in the lost and found box in room 103. If it is valuable, such as a cell phone, USB drive, or wallet, give it to the secretaries. If you have lost something, check the box or ask the secretaries.

Lunch and Eating

You may eat your lunch in the cultural hall (room 221) but not in the classrooms, halls, labs or lobby.  Vending machines are available on the first floor for snacks, sandwiches, and drinks, but no eating or drinking should take place in this area.  There are microwave ovens near the vending machines for student use; however, students must carefully watch the food being cooked to ensure that it does not burn. Microwaves are also available in the cultural hall.  Kitchens are not available for student use.


The BYU newspaper is delivered free to ELC students once each week.  You can pick up a copy in the first floor entrance. Go to newsnet.byu.edu/section.cfm/home to read the electronic edition of the BYU newspaper.


Because of the high volume of copy work required by our teachers, ELC secretaries are not allowed to make photocopies or send faxes for the students.  There are many places on campus and in the community providing copy services. One such place is the FedEx-Kinkos store just west of the ELC.


Students at the English Language Center should be mature, responsible, and considerate of others.  You must treat your teachers, classmates, and the office staff with respect.  Students who persist in displaying negative behavior towards teachers, fellow students, or staff may be dismissed. Because our school is also a church, we expect that you will treat the building and its furnishings with care and help to keep it clean and beautiful.


Students must provide the ELC with an email address that can be used for communication. The address provided must be accurate and should be checked at least once per day. Students will be responsible for all information sent to them from the ELC. If students need to update their phone number or email address, they should give this information to Arwen Wyatt or one of the office workers in room 103 (801-422-3137, elc-secretary@byu.edu).

English Use

English use at the ELC can be captured in one sentence: We expect excellence; you should too. The ELC is an English language school. As such, you are expected to speak English as much as possible in and out of class. Your teachers will insist that you speak English all the time you are in their classroom. We expect you will do the same outside of class. You are here to improve your English, the greatest language development will occur when students are using English.

Teacher responsibilities
  1. Your teachers will expect you to use English while at the ELC. This is a matter of your personal progress and respect for others.
  2. Throughout the semester your teachers will positively reinforce the expectation of excellence and encourage diligent efforts to improve your English by using it.
  3. Your teachers will help you know the etiquette of language use.

Student responsibilities
  1. Be self-regulated learners. Excellence is only achieved if you make the necessary effort to improve.
  2. Set goals for how you will use English while at the ELC.
  3. Have a positive attitude towards other students who are using English especially those who speak the same native language as you. Help each other improve.

Some initiatives that will help you expect excellence are:

  1. Expect Excellence Lessons: These are two lessons that you will receive in two of your classes that explain Expect Excellence.
  2. Self-Regulation Lessons: These are eight lessons that you will receive in all of your classes that will help you become a self-regulated learner of English.
  3. TalkAbouts: These are short conversations you can have with BYU students to help you practice your English.
  4. English for Lunch: These are activities held during the lunch break once per week where you can have fun, get to know other students, and use English.
  5. English Thank You Cards: These are cards you get for speaking in English at the ELC. You can receive them in halls, elevator, and other places around the ELC if a teacher hears you speaking in English. You will not receive them during your classes. They are given as a reward for out-of-class use of English. You can also receive them when you do a TalkAbout or when you attend English for Lunch. The cards can be redeemed in the main office (room 103) for prizes. At the end of each semester, the classes with the most English Thank You cards (one Foundations class and one Academic class) will be rewarded with a special luncheon.
  6. Language Etiquette videos: These are videos that will be shown in each class that will show you how to have proper language etiquette.

Honor Code

ELC students, faculty, administration, and staff at the ELC seek to live by those moral virtues which are part of the gospel of Jesus Christ. They will:

  1. Be honest
  2. Live a chaste and virtuous life
  3. Obey the law and all campus policies
  4. Use clean language
  5. Respect others
  6. Abstain from alcoholic beverages, tobacco, tea, coffee, and substance abuse
  7. Participate regularly in church services
  8. Observe the Dress and Grooming Standards
  9. Encourage others in their commitment to comply with the Honor Code

You agreed to this when you applied to the ELC. Ask a teacher or administrator if you have any questions about the meaning of these points.

Specific policies include (1) the Academic Honesty Policy, (2) the Dress and Grooming Standards, (3) the Residential Living Standards, and (4) the Continuing Student Ecclesiastical Endorsement. honorcode.byu.edu

Academic Honesty

ELC students should seek to be totally honest with others. You should complete your own work and be evaluated based upon that work. You should avoid academic dishonesty in all its forms, including cheating, falsification, and plagiarism.


Cheating is a form of dishonesty where you try to show knowledge or skill that you do not have. Examples include:

  1. Copying from another person's work while completing an assignment, quiz, or test
  2. Allowing someone to copy from you while you complete an assignment, quiz, or test
  3. Using unauthorized materials while working on an assignment, quiz, or test
  4. Talking with others without permission while working on an assignment, quiz, or test
  5. Completing an assignment, quiz, or test for someone else
  6. Allowing someone else to complete an assignment, quiz, or test for you
  7. Continuing work on a timed assignment, quiz, or test after the time has ended
  8. Using your work from a previous class without approval
  9. Completing an assignment, quiz, or test and then telling a classmate what was on it
  10. Asking a classmate about an assignment, quiz, or test that you have not yet taken


Falsification is a form of dishonesty where you make up or change the original information. Examples include:

  1. Citing a source that does not exist
  2. Citing a source for ideas and information that are not included in the source
  3. Intentionally distorting the meaning or applicability of data
  4. Inventing data or statistical results to support conclusions


Intentional Plagiarism is the act of representing the words, ideas, or data of another as your own without citing the author through quotation, reference, or footnote. Inadvertent Plagiarism is the act of using another's words, ideas, or data without citing the author properly. This usually results from not knowing the rules for documenting sources or from not being careful in research and writing. Students who have questions about citing an author should talk with their teacher. Examples of plagiarism include:

  1. Direct Plagiarism—Copying an original source exactly without citing the author.
  2. Paraphrased Plagiarism—Paraphrasing ideas from another that the reader might
  3. Plagiarism Mosaic—Borrowing of words, ideas, or data from an original source and blending this original material with your own without citing the author properly.
  4. Insufficient Acknowledgment—Not completely citing the authors for their words, ideas, or data from an original source. Plagiarism may occur with unpublished as well as published writing. Acts of copying another student's work and submitting it as your own individual work without proper credit to the author is a serious form of plagiarism.

Dress and Grooming Standards

The dress and grooming of both men and women should always be modest, neat, and clean, consistent with the dignity adherent to representing The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Modesty and cleanliness are important values that reflect personal dignity and integrity, through which students, staff, and faculty represent the principles and standards of the Church. Members of the BYU community commit themselves to observe the following standards, which reflect the direction of the Board of Trustees and the Church publication For the Strength of Youth. The Dress and Grooming Standards are as follows:


A clean and well-cared-for appearance should be maintained. Clothing is inappropriate when it is sleeveless, revealing, or form fitting. Shorts must be knee-length or longer. Hairstyles should be clean and neat, avoiding extreme styles or colors, and trimmed above the collar, leaving the ear uncovered. Sideburns should not extend below the earlobe or onto the cheek. If worn, moustaches should be neatly trimmed and may not extend beyond or below the corners of the mouth. Men are expected to be clean-shaven; beards are not acceptable. Earrings and other body piercing are not acceptable. Shoes should be worn in all public campus areas.


A clean and well-cared-for appearance should be maintained. Clothing is inappropriate when it is sleeveless, strapless, backless, or revealing; has slits above the knee; or is form fitting. Dresses, skirts, and shorts must be knee-length or longer. Hairstyles should be clean and neat, avoiding extremes in styles or colors. Excessive ear piercing (more than one per ear) and all other body piercing are not acceptable. Shoes should be worn in all public campus areas.

Residential Living Standards

BYU has established living standards to help students learn some of the high ideals and principles of behavior expected at Brigham Young University. Therefore, the university requires students to adhere to the following standards: Visitors of the opposite sex are permitted in living rooms and kitchens but not in the bedrooms in off-campus living units. The use of the bathroom areas by members of the opposite sex is not appropriate unless it is an emergency, and then only if the safety, privacy, and sensitivity of other residents can be ensured. Visiting hours may begin after 9:00 a.m. and last until 12:00 midnight. Friday night visiting hours may extend until 1:30. Landlords may establish a shorter visiting period if proper notice is given to students.

Other Standards

All students must follow the Honor Code at all times and places, whether on or off campus. This includes during vacation periods. In addition, you should influence other ELC students to do the same. You cannot use alcohol, tobacco, coffee, illegal drugs or use prescription medications inappropriately. You must not have sexual relations with anyone except your legal husbands or wives. You must not be involved in obscene or indecent expressions, disorderly or disruptive conduct, or participate in gambling. You must not be involved with pornographic or offensive material, or any conduct that violates the principles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Violations of the Honor Code may result in actions up to and including separation from the university. Violations of these standards may be reported to the Honor Code Office, 4440 WSC, (801) 422-2847.

Continuing Student Endorsements

All students continuing at the ELC must complete a Continuing Student Endorsement before the beginning of a new academic year. Regardless of when a student begins the ELC, a Continuing Student Endorsement must be submitted by August 1st before the beginning of every Fall Semester.

Whether on or off campus or between semesters, all students are expected to abide by the Honor Code, which includes the Academic Honesty Policy, the Dress and Grooming Standards, and the applicable Residential Living Standards. LDS Students must fulfill their duty in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, regularly attend Church meetings, and abide by the rules and standards of the Church on and off campus. Students who are not members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are also expected to maintain the same standards of conduct. They are encouraged to participate in services of their preferred religion.

Steps to Endorsement:
  1. Request a Continuing Student Ecclesiastical Endorsement online (www.endorse.byu.edu)
  2. Pass the online Honor Code refresher tutorial
  3. Schedule and complete an interview with your Ecclesiastical Leader
  4. Await email confirmation of your endorsement decision

Dating & Romantic Relationships

ELC staff such as administrators, teachers, tutors, lab employees, administrative staff, and interns are not allowed to date or maintain a romantic relationship with currently enrolled students. During your time enrolled as a student at the ELC, you cannot pursue or initiate a romantic relationship with any ELC staff. In order to pursue a romantic relationship, either the student or the staff member would need to voluntarily leave the ELC. Please talk to the Student Life Coordinator if you have any questions about this policy.

Dismissals from the ELC

Students can be dismissed from the ELC for various reasons such as

  1. citizenship grades below 84% (link to Academic Status)
  2. attendance below 80% (link to ELC Attendance Policy)
  3. not making adequate progress on their Level Achievement Tests
  4. a violation of the honor code, including inappropriate behavior (policy.byu.edu/view/index.php?p=26)
  5. other problems such as not paying bills on time

You will usually receive a warning that a particular problem needs to be resolved or you will be dismissed. If the problem is very serious, you will be dismissed without such a warning. Please note that refunds for the current semester are not given to students who are dismissed. Dismissals due to violations of the Honor Code or the ELC’s attendance policy result in the immediate termination of the student visa.  Such students will need to leave the US within two weeks. Dismissed students who want to transfer to another school will have to reapply to be reinstated. However, attempts to be reinstated are rarely successful.  Students who are permanent residents or on other visa categories should contact Anna Bailey’s office to determine if the ELC dismissal could affect their status.

Classes & Grades

*As circumstances permit, University Prep can be repeated one time, for a maximum of two semesters in University Prep.

Academic Status

The ELC requires students to maintain a citizenship grade of at least 3.0 (84%) in each class. During the semester, if your citizenship grade drops below 84% (3.0) in one or more classes, you will be placed on a three-week probation. During this time you must meet with the Student Life Coordinator and raise your grades back to 84%. If you do not reach 84% during that time frame, you may receive one additional three-week probationary period if your citizenship grades have shown adequate improvement. If after the extension you have not raised your grade to 84%, you will be dismissed.

During the course of the semester, you may only receive two probationary periods. These can happen consecutively or at different times during the semester, but a maximum of two can be granted. If you begin the semester on probation, it counts as if you have already used one of your two-week probations and will therefore only have one possible grace period remaining. For more information, see Grades and Attendance.

ELC Attendance Policy

Consistently attending class is a central part of learning and improving your English. When you are absent from class, you miss important information and practice opportunities that you need to improve your English.

The US Government allows each English program to establish its own attendance policy. The following requirements reflect the ELC’s commitment to create the right environment to help you improve your English.

ELC students must maintain 80% attendance in each and every class at all times. As soon as your attendance drops below 80% in any one of your four classes, you will receive a warning letter. If you have any unexcused absences before raising your attendance back to 80%, you will be dismissed.

If your attendance drops below 80% a second time in any one of your four classes, you will be dismissed from the ELC. Once you receive your attendance dismissal letter, you must go to Anna Bailey’s office (4056 JFSB) immediately.

The US Government states that if a student is dismissed for violation of a school's attendance policy, then their student visa is immediately terminated and the student will need to leave the US within two weeks.  If students want to transfer to another school, they will have to reapply to be reinstated. However, attempts to be reinstated are rarely successful.

If you are sick and unable to attend class, please provide a note from your doctor. Within two days of returning to class, the doctor’s note must be received in the ELC office (103 UPC). Be aware that forging a doctor’s note is a violation of the BYU Honor Code and will result in an immediate dismissal from the ELC.

If you know that you will be absent from class for any reason other than an illness (i.e., a family wedding or a death in the family), you should notify the ELC administration in writing and deliver your letter to UPC 103. These absences will be considered on an individual basis and may not necessarily be excused.

Being absent also results in missing class participation points that are part of your citizenship grade. Whenever you are absent from class, please contact each of your teachers to receive information on the assignments that you missed. Students who are ill should go to the Student Health Center (see Health Care or health.byu.edu for more information).

Books and Class Materials

The ELC is an intensive program designed to learn English efficiently. This requires many resources including textbooks and other materials. Your books and resources may cost up to $300.00 per semester. In order to keep costs low, you may have the option of renting some of your books or resources. In some cases, students must purchase new books or materials that have not been used before.

Classroom Behavior

Students who do not think their classes will help them usually do not do well in those classes.  Classes in the United States are probably taught in a very different style than what you are accustomed to in your country.  It is a good idea to adapt to new teaching styles and remember that there are many different ways to learn.  If you expect to succeed, if you follow your teachers’ advice, and if you work hard, you have a greater chance of success.

Class Changes

In very rare circumstances, a student may be moved up or down a level at the beginning of the semester. This is decided through diagnostic tests and the approval of the administration. No changes will be made during the first week of classes.  All changes must take place by the end of the second week of classes.


The ELC gives two grades, a proficiency grade and a citizenship grade. The ELC uses a grade point average (GPA) system.  For example, 4.0 is a perfect grade, 3.0 is good, 2.0 is low, 1.0 is failing.


The proficiency grade shows how well the student understands and uses English.  It is based on performance on class tests, projects, portfolios, speeches, etc., as determined by your teachers. Generally students will need a minimum proficiency score of above 2.0 in order to be considered to advance to the next proficiency level. Students who continue to lack progress in their proficiency may be dismissed.


The citizenship grade is based on two things: appropriate class participation (50%) and timely completion of homework (50%). In order to return the following semester, students must do the following: (1) maintain a citizenship GPA of at least 3.0 (84%), and (2) keep attendance above 80%.

Grades are based on the following conversion:

Level Achievement Tests (LATS)

Level Achievement Tests (LATs) are given at the end of each semester. They are used to test your progress in English in each skill area. If you plan to continue studying at the ELC, you must take the LATs.


One goal of the ELC is to conduct testing and research in better teaching methods.  Students will have the opportunity of cooperating with researchers in their work, which will contribute to the progress in the teaching of English as a second language, not only at the ELC but also throughout the world.  In many cases, the research studies directly benefit the students who participate in the projects.


Your classes at the ELC will prepare you for the TOEFL.  Do not stay away from class to study for the TOEFL.  Students who do this not only get poor grades, but they do not learn many important skills and English principles that they will need for the TOEFL and in order to develop university skills.  If you need extra help to prepare for the TOEFL, talk with the secretaries in the SASC about special materials available to ELC students. The ELC offers a TOEFL preparation class during most semesters. It is open to all students in Foundations C and higher. There is an extra cost of $40 per semester to take this class. You will be able to sign up for this class during the first or second week of the semester. If you would like more information about the TOEFL, go to www.ets.org/toefl/ for the official site of the TOEFL.


Students with Disabilities

If you suspect or are aware that you have a disability, please contact the Student Life Coordinator (801-422-5318). The Student Life Coordinator will help you determine what course of action will be best for you and will help you communicate with your teachers and university personnel to make sure that you receive appropriate assistance.

Health Care

If you are sick or injured, you must go to the BYU Student Health Center first.  If you need to see a specialist, the Health Center physician will refer you to one. Utah has a dry climate.  You may need to drink more water and use moisturizing lotions and lip balm to stay healthy. Fast food (hamburgers, pizza, etc.) is not usually very healthy.  Please remember to eat regular meals with plenty of fruit and vegetables. Daily exercise and plenty of sleep will help you stay healthy and well.

Health Insurance

All students are required to (1) get the BYU health insurance, or (2) prove that they have an adequate a health insurance policy purchased through an US-based company and approved by BYU (see health.byu.edu/index2.php?page=services/insurance.php for a list of accepted insurances).  If a student chooses to obtain insurance coverage from a private insurance company, the insurance must be effective for the entire semester. Students who have not completed an insurance waiver form will be billed for the BYU insurance premium. The deadline for paying for the insurance or submitting the waiver form is two weeks from the start of class. Those who do not complete the waiver or pay for insurance on time will not be allowed to attend classes and will be dismissed from the ELC.  A doctor’s visit at the Student Health Center has a copay of $10 dollars, which is paid at the time of the visit. Urgent care visits are $15 at the time of the visit. If you need to see a doctor outside of the Student Health Center, you will pay a copay of $25 at the time of your visit. In most cases, BYU insurance pays 80% of medical charges.  You must pay 20% at the time of the visit to the doctor.  If you do not have BYU insurance, you must pay the full amount at the time of the visit and then file a claim with your insurance company.  Dental care is not covered by BYU insurance.

Medical Leave

If you become very sick and have to stop attending classes for the remainder of the semester, you can apply for a medical leave. Only those who are planning to continue in school for the next semester are eligible for a medical leave within the current semester, and your I-20 form has to expire for the semester after the medical leave. No refunds are given to those on medical leave for the current semester’s tuition. To apply for a medical leave, you need to submit an official letter on letterhead from a U.S. medical doctor stating that you are ill and need to be released from attending classes for the semester. The letter needs to state the medical diagnosis of your condition. If you are not well enough to return to school for the semester after the medical leave, you will need to leave the U.S. or transfer to another school before the beginning of the next semester. If you work on campus you must stop. Students on medical leave cannot work.

Tuberculosis Test

Every international student is required by the United States government to have a skin test for tuberculosis. Every new student at the ELC will have this test within the first few weeks of class. Doctors and nurses from the Health Center come to the ELC to perform this test. You must come to receive the test.  Students who do not have the test or do not get the test checked in three days by a nurse from the Health Center will not be allowed to go to class until the testing is completed. Student health insurance will not pay for this test if you do not get it done at the ELC.  If the test shows that you have a problem, you will be required to have a chest x-ray.  Student health insurance will pay 80% of the cost for the x-ray.

Visas, I-20s, & Transfering

Passports, Visas, and I-20s

Students must maintain a current passport and a current I-20 form to be in the U.S. legally. You can remain in the U.S. on an expired student visa as long as you keep a current I-20 form. If you leave the U.S. and your visa has expired, you will need to apply for a new visa before you can re-enter the U.S. If you need to leave the U.S. during your enrollment and plan to return to the ELC within the same semester, you must inform the ELC in writing, and you must go to the BYU International Services Office to receive an authorization signature on page 3 of your current I-20 form. Go to the International Services Office at 1351 WSC (Wilkinson Student Center) if you have questions or problems.  You have been allowed to enter the United States as a student because of the I-20 sent to you by the ELC.  To maintain your I-20, you must obey the ELC rules and the BYU Honor Code.

Withdrawing from School

If it becomes necessary for you to leave school before the semester ends, you need to contact Anna Bailey (Anna_Bailey@byu.edu) by email explaining why you need to withdraw from classes. You need to list the last day you will be attending classes in your email. Your student status will be changed to an “official withdrawal.” After your last day of class, you have approximately 2 weeks to leave the US. If you are not attending school or on an approved vacation, you cannot remain in the U.S. legally. If you officially withdraw from classes during the semester, you are not legal to transfer to another school. If you wish to remain in the U.S. after withdrawing from classes, you can contact the U.S. Department of Immigration and apply for a change of status to a tourist visa.

Extending Your I-20 Form

If you plan to return to the ELC for the next semester and your I-20 form expires at the end of the current semester, you need to extend your I-20 form before it expires so you can continue in school. To extend the I-20, you need to take the items listed below to Anna Bailey’s office in 4056 JFSB:

  1. Bank statement, dated within the last three months, showing sufficient funds for one semester ($5,800) or for two semesters ($11,600). If ELC students have dependents with them in the U.S., an additional $700 per dependent per semester must be proven.
  2. Statement of Support by Sponsor (or a letter of support from the sponsor). This is only necessary if you have a sponsor different from the original sponsor listed on the current I-20 form.

I-20 form extension requests need to be completed at least two weeks before the I-20 expiration date.

RESTRICTION: First semester University Prep students can only extend for two semesters if they are applying for a vacation during the next semester and will attend a second session of University Prep after the vacation.


If you are accepted to continue your studies as a degree-seeking student at BYU, you need to receive a new I-20 form from the BYU International Admissions Office or the BYU Graduate School Office before your current I-20 form expires. After you are accepted to BYU, you have to contact the appropriate Admissions Office at BYU to obtain the new I-20 form before your current ELC I-20 form expires.

Transferring to another school (other than BYU):

  1. Apply and be accepted at the new school. Bring the ELC Office in 4056 JFSB a copy of your acceptance letter or email from the new school.
  2. The ELC Office will give you a Transfer Release Memo which you will need to take with your acceptance letter to the BYU International Services Office (1351 WSC). You must have a “zero” balance on your BYU Student Account before you are permitted to transfer.
  3. Request that your SEVIS record be transferred to the new school at the BYU International Student Office in 1351 WSC. Once your SEVIS record is transferred you are no longer an ELC student, and you cannot work at BYU.

If you are not continuing as a student in the ELC, and you have successfully completed the semester, your ELC I-20 form will end (or be shortened to end) on the last day of the semester you last attended.  This will allow you 60 days to either leave the US or to transfer to another school. If you are not in school or on an approved vacation, you cannot remain in the U.S. for more than 60 days after the end of a semester.

Tuition, Deposits, & Vacations

New Student Tuition and Cancellation of Enrollment

Students who are attending the ELC for their first semester are required to pay their tuition for their first semester before they are admitted into the program. The ELC does not refund tuition for a semester after that semester has begun.

To cancel enrollment and request a refund or a transfer to a future semester, the new student must notify Anna Baileys office (elcsec@byu.edu) in writing (email is acceptable) at least 30 days before the beginning of the semester.

Current Student Deposits

Students who are currently attending the ELC and would like to return for the next semester are required to make a $500 tuition deposit by mid-semester. This deposit will allow the student to continue for the next semester as long as the student has met the minimum citizenship grade requirements, is progressing in the program, and is otherwise qualified to continue participating in the program.

The $500 tuition deposit is nonrefundable unless the student demonstrates that he or she is accepted into a degree-seeking program at a U.S. university which starts at the beginning of the next semester. If the student transfers to a different ESL program, or otherwise decides not to attend the ELC program, the $500 tuition deposit is not refundable. The remaining tuition amount for the next semester is due by the last day of the current semester. For additional information, please contact Anna Baileys office in 4056 JFSB, (801) 422-2691, elcsec@byu.edu.

Currently Enrolled Student Refunds

The ELC does not refund tuition for the current semester after the semester has begun.

If a student wants to transfer to another ESL program or withdraw from the ELC program after paying tuition, then the student must transfer or withdraw from the ELC before the first day of ELC class in order to receive a partial refund (i.e., tuition less the $500 nonrefundable tuition deposit). If the student demonstrates that he or she has been accepted for the next semester to a degree-seeking program at a university or college in the U.S., then the student may receive a full tuition refund as long as the student withdraws from the ELC before the first day of ELC class. Students who withdraw from ELC classes or transfer to another ESL program will not receive a tuition refund for the current ELC semester after the current semester has begun. Students taking an ELC approved vacation have a different refund policy which is listed below.

Questions about refunds and tuition payments may be directed to Anna Baileys office in 4056 JFSB, (801) 422-2691, elcsec@byu.edu.

Vacation Policies and Vacation Refunds

Students who have attended the ELC for eight consecutive months (two semesters) and are planning to return to the ELC after the vacation period, may apply for a semester vacation. ELC students may have only one semester vacation during their studies at the ELC. The vacation application is emailed to current students and must be submitted to the ELC Office by email (elcsec@byu.edu) or in person in 4056 JFSB by the vacation application deadline listed on the application form. A $500 non-refundable deposit must also be paid to the ELC Office by the vacation application deadline listed on the application form. The$500 non-refundable tuition deposit will be applied to the semester following the vacation. The remainder of the tuition for the semester following the vacation is due by the deadline set by the ELC office. The remaining tuition payment requirement can be waived if the student demonstrates that he or she has been accepted for the semester following the vacation to a degree-seeking program at a university or college in the U.S. Students who provide an acceptance letter to a degree-seeking program at a university or college in the U.S. are eligible to work until the last day of the vacation semester.

A vacation may only be approved for students who are planning to return to the ELC after completion of their vacation, and who have met the minimum citizenship grade requirements of 3.0 (84%) or higher, are progressing in the program, and are otherwise qualified to continue participating in the program. Students completing University Prep for the second time are not eligible for a vacation since they have completed the ELCs highest level and cannot return to attend a future semester.

Students applying for a vacation will need to extend their I-20 form to expire at the end of the semester following the vacation. Students on vacation, will be required to take the ELC placement test following the vacation and will need to attend classes in the level indicated by the test.

Following the vacation semester, students are expected to return to ELC classes. However, if, during the vacation semester, a student is admitted to a degree-seeking program at a university or college in the U.S. for the semester following the vacation, the student needs to submit an acceptance letter from the new school before the last day of the vacation semester, and he or she may receive a full tuition refund. Students who otherwise do not return to ELC classes, or who transfer to another ESL program for the semester following the vacation, will not receive a tuition refund. Questions about refunds and tuition payments may be directed to Anna Baileys office in 4056 JFSB, (801) 422-2691, elcsec@byu.edu.

BYU and Provo


The ELC sponsors several different activities during each semester.  The purposes of these activities are to give students opportunities to make friends, learn about culture and speak English in different contexts. We hope that you will participate in these activities. We also hope that you will participate in a variety of activities on the BYU campus and in the community.


As a student, you will need a U.S. bank account. This will allow you to use a check card (debit card) at stores, exchange foreign money for U.S. money, and transfer money to and from other countries. It will also give you a safe place to keep money. Student accounts at most banks are free. To open an account, you only need a passport and money. Some banks also require a Social Security Number (Wells Fargo does not). To open an account, simply go to the bank and talk to a banker. Take your passport and money. It will only take about thirty minutes. If you have further questions about why you need an account or what you can use your account for, talk to Sandy Hatchett (103 UPC) who can give you more information.

Culture Shock

If you have feelings of anxiety and depression or are having difficulty adjusting to your new environment (foods, customs, people, language), you may be suffering from culture shock.  This is very normal and will pass in time.  Be patient with your teachers, your classmates, your roommates and yourself.  Don’t hide in your apartment.  Attend all of your classes.  Talk with your teachers about your feelings.  Make some new friends.  Remember that others are having culture shock, too.


ELC students who are Foundations C or higher are allowed to work on campus. However, school is your priority. Work is not an excuse for missing class or tests, or failing to complete homework.

  1. Be currently enrolled in and attending classes Foundations C or higher
  2. Have at least 3.0 (84%) citizenship grades in ALL classes. If you do not have the necessary grades, you will not receive permission until you meet that requirement

Please remember that unless you have a work permit from the Immigration Service, it is against the law to get an off-campus (non-university) job in the United States.  Students who break this law will be dismissed from the ELC and could be deported.

New students who are placed in Foundations C or higher will need to wait until the first citizenship grades are reported. The first citizenship grades of each semester are reported during week 4. Once citizenship grades and teacher ratings have been submitted, students who have at least 3.0 citizenship grades in ALL FOUR classes, may be given work permission.

Facilities Use Pass

ELC students need to purchase a Facilities Use Pass to use any of the physical education facilities or equipment on campus, which include the weight room; the basketball, tennis, or racquetball courts; the swimming pool; and so on. The pass costs $45 and can be purchased at the Information Window located in Room 112 of the Richards Building (RB).

Provo Library

The Provo Library is located at 550 North and University Avenue. It is a convenient place to find many books and other resources to improve your English. Library hours are 9am to 9pm, Monday through Friday, and 9am to 6pm on Saturday. To contact the library, call 801-852-6650 or go online at: www.provolibrary.com

Safety and Security

Do not walk alone after dark.  Although Provo is a relatively safe place, crimes do occur.  Keep your apartment locked at all times.  Do not leave books, purses, wallets and backpacks unattended.  Keep valuables and money in a safe place.  Don’t leave cash or checkbooks in your apartment.  Don’t loan money to friends or to roommates.


If you live off campus and have roommates, be sure to have your telephone installed with restricted service.   This means that long-distance calls cannot be dialed directly from the phone.  We recommend that you get a long-distance calling card (such as Sprint or AT&T).  Some students choose to buy cell phones rather than use a landline. There is a courtesy phone on the second floor for student use. Long distance calls cannot be made using this phone. Please limit your calls to two minutes so that others can have access to the phone.