Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a question about our ESL program, you might find an answer below!

You may also email us at

Do you accept IELTS or TOEFL for placement into your program?

No, unfortunately, success in these standardized tests has not correlated with success at our school. Our program not only teaches English as a language, but it has a specific focus on building the skills that lead to academic success. Our Skype intake procedure has shown the strongest link between expected level and success in our program.

Can I be tested online from my home, or do I have to be in Canada?

The Skype test can be done from the comfort of your own home. Our tester will schedule a time to meet on-line, and will conduct the test on their computer. An applicant will need an internet connection, and a Skype and email account.

Can I only come for one semester?

Yes! If you would like to come to Luther College High School for one semester to experience Canadian high school and build your English ability, we suggest our Foundations program. Of course, if you would like to continue with your studies, we have other courses available as well.

Do you have summer English courses?

Unfortunately, at this time, we do not offer a summer program.

Does this program guarantee that I get into university?

Unfortunately, there are no guarantees. While learning a language is one of the most difficult skills to master, learning academic language is even more difficult. Our program prepares students with the basic skills needed to be successful in our other high school programs. Like all students, work ethic, dedication and drive are needed to be successful. However, over 96% of Luther College students do enroll in post-secondary education after graduation.

Does my child really need ESL classes?

Due to the strong emphasis on academics found at Luther, international students coming with a credit in English from another institution may not be able to succeed in Luther’s regular English classes. The same applies to other humanities classes including History and Christian Ethics. Students studying in an academic environment typically need a lot of language support, and because of this, Luther provides ample English language support for our international students, both in the classroom and one-on-one, until they have reached a proficiency level where they can find academic success on their own. The placement of international students in both ESL and mainstream courses is based on the results of a language assessment that all non-native English speakers must complete over Skype before attending Luther. If your child has tested at Level B1, B2, C1 during our intake assessment, we have deemed the ESL program a mandatory step in their high school career.

Student attendance for both ESL classes and one-on-one coaching is critical and will be one of the determining factors in whether or not a student passes into either the next level of ESL or graduates from the ESL program.

What grade will my child be in?

All students who test at the Intermediate level are registered in grade 9. Intermediate level students will have to successfully complete four years of study (starting in grade 9 regardless of equivalent credits) to eligible to graduate from Luther College High School. This grade level could be adjusted (if appropriate) when the student completes the requirements for Intermediate Level ESL.

ESL students who test at an Advanced ESL level will be limited to grade 9 (and 10 classes) and it should be understood that students in advanced ESL level should plan to spend four years to complete their ESL levels and their high school diploma. Most of the students at this level will be registered in a grade nine English class to experience the expectations in the humanities classes at Luther College.

What subjects will my child study while at Luther?

Foundations – Students at this level are encouraged to take Math, Art, Drama, Music, Wellness and Drama. Students will not be registered for humanities classes at this level. Humanities classes include English, History, and Christian Ethics. Students will also not be able to study Science or any other modern language course.

Advanced – Students are enrolled in English 9 classes, as well as several Science, Math and Arts options. However, they are not be permitted to study other humanities classes at this level. These include History, Christian Ethics, and a language other than Latin.

High-Level - Students at this level are registered to study English and Christian Ethics. Students may be registered in a maximum of two humanities classes while studying Higher Level ESL with no more than one class in each subject. In exceptional cases, students may be allowed to also register for History in addition to Christian Ethics and English (this typically happens when a student must repeat High Level). For a student to be eligible, all of the teachers this student had the previous semester must agree they have exceptional motivation. In such situations, the student may be allowed to add the third humanities class.

Students in our program are generally limited to two Humanities classes and are not allowed to enrol in two courses of English simultaneously with a language other than English (i.e. Latin, French, and German).

My child has credit courses from another school. How does this affect him/her at Luther?

Students that have received a transfer credit from their previous school in English 10 recognized by the Saskatchewan Ministry of Education will be registered for English 10 in their first semester at Luther.

All students planning to graduate from Luther College are required to study one Christian Ethics class per year of study at Luther. Exceptions are possible if students have recognized credits in Christian Ethics at another institution before attending Luther College. For Intermediate and Advanced Level ESL students, the requirement is deferred until the students’ English comprehension is sufficient to study and participate in the Christian Ethics curriculum.

Will my child experience Canadian Life?

Luther College High School is committed to building a diverse community. Our students come from many countries, some having immigrated to Canada with their parents, others coming here without their family. Both residence and day students can benefit from being in an intercultural community by sharing their own culture and language, taking part in school events and by forming friendships outside their home culture.

The school strives to teach an intrapersonal mindset at Luther to students: asking them to practice connection, respect and understanding as the foundations of community. There are a number of opportunities to do so: the International Café, a twice-monthly opportunity for students to engage in that understanding, Language Exchange Club, and Multicultural Night where students showcase their culture through food and creative performances, as well as Chapel presentations. The Luther residence also focuses on celebrating both Canadian and international cultures.

We believe that involvement in the school community is essential for the linguistic and personal growth of our international students. Therefore, a major component of our ESL programming is something called Opportunities for Practicing English (OFPE), a series of assignments that measure student integration into the community at Luther. Students are evaluated on their English language “practice” efforts and involvement in the co-curricular and community life at Luther College. For example, students may join an athletic team or student club, or participate in the running the school’s annual musical (just a few of many options) then, based on this involvement; students submit an assignment in which they provide an analysis of their English speaking experience.