For International Students and Instructors

The Speaking Center is open to international students who:

  • were not required to take any ESL classes
  • have completed all of their ESL classes
  • are enrolled in ESL Academic Oral Skills (ESL:4100) and, have been referred by their instructor
  • are enrolled in ESL Courses in Common (taking all of the following courses-- ESL Listening and Notetaking—ESL: 4130; ESL Grammar Skills—ESL: 4160; ESL Academic Writing for undergrads—ESL:4190; and ESL Academic Reading Skills—ESL: 4200) and, have been referred by their instructor
  • are enrolled in TAPE classes—however, the Speaking Center cannot be used to practice the ESPA or ELPT
  • are graduate students seeking assistance with non-ESL classes—students must come in with an assignment sheet, or show an assignment on ICON

For Students:

Each semester, we tutor many instructors and international students who have met our ESL pre-requisites (completion of the IIEP program, if applicable, and a grade of C or better in either ESL Oral Skills or Listening Skills, if required) on such issues as:

  • Participating in discussion classes
  • Casual conversation in or out of class
  • Understanding assignments, and avoiding plagiarism on assignments
  • Comprehending cultural references and unfamiliar vocabulary in assigned and unassigned reading
  • Crafting and delivering speeches
  • Improving public speaking skills

We provide one-on-one and small group instruction to students who want to improve their speaking performance in any course or domain of university life. Instruction is tailored to students' individual needs and includes help with

  • Delivery techniques
  • Methods of organizing material
  • Strategies for effective presentations
  • Ideas for starting and keeping up with conversations
  • Options for preparing and practicing speeches
  • Methods of generating and using responses to speeches for further improvement

Our services are open to all University of Iowa undergraduates and graduate students who have completed all IIEP (pre-ESL) requirements, if applicable, and who have completed ESL Oral Skills orListening Skills, if required, with a grade of C or better.

For Instructors:

The Speaking Center is also a resource for University of Iowa Professors and Graduate Teaching Assistants. Our tutors work with instructors on topics including:

  • Designing and delivering effective lectures
  • Overcoming speech anxiety and organizing presentations
  • Improving classroom dynamics
  • Thesis and dissertation defenses
  • Readings and other performances
  • Job interviews
  • Conference presentations