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ESL Assistant (ESLAs)



Summary of Program
Spend an hour a week assisting graduate students from other countries
as they work on their oral English in CAELC ESL classes.

Engage in class discussions, contribute your knowledge of English usage and slang, and provide helpful feedback as students perform oral presentations. You must be a native speaker of English in order to apply for this position.

Program Outline

Basic Prerequisites:

  • Be a native speaker of English
  • Able to work with international graduate students attending ESL classes at UVa
  • Able to attend ESL evening classes at UVa on Grounds and assist students

General Time Requirements:

  • When? Beginning the 5th week of the semester and lasting until the final week
  • How often? Once per week, ten (10) times per semester
  • How long? You are expected to attend class for the last hour, and the time will depend on the class of your choosing.

Position Duties:

  • Join an ongoing ESL class on weekday evenings
  • Contribute cultural knowledge to in-class discussions and provide an undergraduate perspective
  • Engage with students as they practice oral English and model native English usage and slang
  • Provide helpful feedback and audience for oral presentations


“I have loved working with the ITAs during my last two semesters at UVa. From them, I have learned about physics, chemistry, gambling, biomedical ethics, and DVDs. They have taught me it’s okay to make mistakes and to ask questions. […] Looking back, I can see just how much they have improved. They seem much more comfortable with their English skills. I know they and all the other ITAs will be (and have become) wonderful Teaching Assistants in their fields.”— L.F., Academic ESLA

“They have been amazingly generous in devoting an evening a week to our class, wonderfully flexible in being able to jump into and even lead new activities on a moments’ notice, and clear and compassionate in with their feedback to our students, and finally–great fun. Our class would have been a pale imitation of itself without their presence, as they provided students with a high degree of one-on-one attention that they would never have received otherwise.”— S.G., Instructor

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