The objective of the International Language Program (ILP) is to bridge the linguistic - and cultural - gap developed by under-representation of many (primarily non-European) languages in most educational programs. The focus of ILP is on African, Nilotic and Asian languages.
These languages are often important to students because of their heritage, culture, or professional aspirations. They are often not covered in schools and yet are of immense importance to families and individuals whose heritage includes those languages.
The aim of ILP is not only to support students to become proficient speakers but to become grounded in the cultural elements that underpin the language. In many instances, young children (and even adults) live in countries that make it difficult for them to achieve proficiency in their vernacular or the vernacular of their parents.
ILP seeks to close that gap by bringing language instruction to residents in Diaspora as well as business and professional students. ILP uses the online platform as a convenient means of delivery.
ILP provides trained, seasoned instructors to teach students languages with the aim of developing proper writing and speaking skills. In addition to learning a language, ILP also provides a safe, convenient platform for students to interact with other students who have a shared heritage (or interest therein). This social interaction helps to cement the cultural elements of the ILP training.
Currently ILP is focused on the following languages:
- Chinese (Mandarin)
- Creole (Haitian)
- Patois (Jamaican)
The ILP is structured as THREE courses, each of which is a self-contained 6-month program that builds on the previous one. Students are awarded a "Certificate of Proficiency" on successful completion of the examinations at the end of course. In certain circumstances, these courses may be transferable as academic credit to other programs of study in other institutions, as appropriate.
The courses are structured as follows:
- ILP Beginner: This course (also referred to as ILP I) assumes no prior knowledge of the language and is intended to provide the foundational basis for speaking a language. ILP I seeks to get students to the threshold of "conversational language" while providing the cultural and contextual frame for the language. This introductory course is important for students to understand a culture and the language that derives from that culture.
- ILP Intermediate: This course (also referred to as ILP II) builds on the foundation of ILP I to improve the "linguistic proficiency" of students. It places emphasis on proper grammar and seeks to ensure that students develop the syntax and structure that will prepare them for a lifetime of verbal communication in the language of choice. By the end of ILP II, students are expected to be confident speakers of the language.
- ILP Advanced: ILP III focuses on writing and formal communication in the language. It provides ample opportunity for writing and formal communication with the goal of firming up the confidence of students into becoming proficient speakers and writers in the chosen language.
Though instructors may modify the sequence of specific items in the curriculum to meet the needs of a specific cohort of students, the broad ILP curriculum is as outlined below. Each course runs for a year and classes typically meet twice a week. Students have access to learning and testing material on the online platform. Furthermore, ILP provides an online "language exchange" where students can meet in a safe, closed online environment to practice their developing language skills. Students also have access to audio-visual material that helps in the development of their skills.
ILP I (Beginner):
This 6-month course is designed to provide the critical foundational elements for students to develop their language skills. Over the year, students are expected to acquire the skills to understand basic conversations and to convey basic concepts in the new language. This course includes the following modules:
- Introduction to the cultural norms, traditions, customs and context that underpin the language.
- Overview of the geographic scope and the various dialects associated with the language.
- Outline of the basic structure, alphabet and vocabulary of the language.
- Basic counting and enumeration for conversational purposes (cardinals and ordinals).
- Understand the appropriate forms of greetings in the language, and respond appropriately in context.
- Expression of basic courtesies, greetings and other normative social grace unique to, and common in, the language.
- Development of the skills to introduce oneself and to convey basic biographical information (name, place of origin, residence, family, etc.) in a conversational setting to a stranger.
- Recognition of normative sounds and exclamations.
- Recognition of basic intonations used in normal dialogue (question and answer).
- Introductory and appropriate usage of tenses in the language.
- Development of the skills to engage a stranger in simple dialogue and to elicit basic biographical information from the stranger.
- Development of the skills to convey and elicit the time, date, days of the week and other chronometric information.
- Engagement of colleagues in a simple dialogue simulating a (purchasing) scenario in a shop.
- Engagement of colleagues in simple conversations relating to basic needs - food, lodging, transportation, etc.
- Beginning recognition of basic grammatical structures and relationships, and increasing responsiveness to simple questions in the language.
- Increasing recognition and responsiveness to dialogue in (simulated) social settings.
- Demonstrated ability to make requests, convey feelings & frustrations, and discuss personal information (e.g. family relationships) in contextually appropriate terms.
- Increased cultural awareness and insight in social settings.
- Demonstration of basic writing skills.
ILP II (Intermediate):
- Ability to convey basic needs and communication in writing (such as email, text messaging and other platforms).
- Routine utilization of appropriate expressions and physical gestures to convey warmth and cordiality in the language.
- Increasing recognition of dialects or stylistic variations in the language.
- Routine delivery and reception of requests in (simulated) formal settings, including polite conveyance of preferences and dislikes.
- Improved ability to write about experiences or concepts in a variety of circumstances.
- Increasing ability to appropriately parse and interweave written and spoken content in a conversational setting.
- Improved ability to read basic articles in newspapers or other publications, to discuss the content with colleagues, and/or ask questions for clarification in the language.
- Demonstrated ability to participate in a sustained social discussion around topical issues of interest in a group setting.
- Demonstrated expansion of social grace and familiarity with cultural and social norms.
ILP III (Advanced):
- Significantly improved ability to convey conceptual ideas in writing, including longer format essays.
- Demonstrated ability to watch and respond in real-time to a television discussion program as part of a simulated classroom activity.
- Demonstrated ability to transcribe simple music from a song with higher than 85% accuracy.
- Demonstrated ability to TRANSLATE simple music to English with higher than 85% accuracy.
- Ability to document and convey linguistic sophistry by writing detailed descriptions and observations of events using appropriately complex sentences and structures.
- Ability to contribute to DEBATE about a cultural or historical topic of common interest to the class.
- Ability to write an essay about a subject of interest holding opposing views in the delivery of the argument(s) in writing.
- Demonstrated appreciation of the nuances around social and cultural norms associated with the language by discussing these nuances with colleagues in a social setting.
- Ability to present an original essay, article or speech to an audience, conveying a reasoned position, and responding spontaneously and seamlessly to feedback, questions, and opinions from the audience.
ILP classes are designed to be convenient for working as well as supported students. Classes are usually scheduled for evenings and weekends where convenient for the cohort.
Students are assigned to cohorts based on a balance between availability in a given cohort and indicated preference of students during the application process. (Individualized classes are scheduled at the convenience of the student and the instructor but must meet the minimum participation requirements for the program.)
The exact schedule of classes and the electronic credentials needed for online access are provided to students in their Admissions Package.
- ILP courses each run for 6 months (24 weeks).
- EPP cohorts typically start the first (working) Monday of every month.
- Registration for new ILP cohorts closes 1 month in advance of the start date. (For instance, students who want to participate in an ILP program starting in January need to be registered by the end of November.) This is to ensure proper planning and management of cohort sizes.
- ILP classes typically meet online twice a week; registered students have access to study and test material on the online platform every day of the week.
- Special classes for organizations, groups or associations may be arranged outside of this standing schedule. (For group schedules, send email to )
IDMANN Institute is committed to providing affordable, quality education for as many students as possible. As outlined below, ILP courses provide outstanding training for students at a very affordable price point
Application & Registration Fees:
- Students who register for TWO languages at the same time automatically get a 20% discount. Students who wish to register for multiple ILP language courses AT THE SAME TIME should indicate that in their application.
- Families that register two or more family members at the same time for the same language receive a 10% discount on all family members.
- Tuition is payable in 4-week tranches.
- For all individualized instruction (one-on-one), the application fee is $375, and the weekly tuition is $225.
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