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Guided Self Placement

In previous years, students were required to take a Placement Test in order to take ESL and/or English classes.  However, starting Fall 2020, students do not have to take a placement test in order to enter the ESL sequence or ENGL 100.  

The State of California, Orange Coast College, and the ESL Department are working hard to guide students into making the best choices for themselves based on their experiences and abilities.

In order to enter the ESL sequence at OCC, please use the Guided Self-Placement Survey. 

This survey contains course descriptions, audio samples, reading samples, and student writing samples for every course.  Students should open up this survey, compare their own abilities to what is provided, and move higher or lower as necessary.  This survey includes ESL 100 as well.

International Students:

If you are an international student, you may have taken the IELTS or TOEFL exams.  If so, here are our recommendations for choosing a level in the ESL program at OCC.

​ESL Course

​IELTS score

​iBT TOEFL score

​pBT TOEFL score

​ESL 100
​ESL 192
ESL 062​​5.5
​ESL 052

Transferring from the ELL Program at OCC:

If you have previously taken courses in the ELL Program at OCC, you may be able to fit easily into the ESL sequence of courses.  Here are our recommendations for choosing a level in the ESL Program.

ELL-ESL Transition Pathway.png

The current ESL sequence can be understood with the following chart:

High BeginningESL 022
ESL 024
IntermediateESL 032ESL 034
High IntermediateESL 052ESL 054
AdvancedESL 062 
High AdvancedESL 192 
Native Speaker Proficiency
ESL 100 
*There is an optional level for beginning-level students that includes ESL A015 (Grammar, Reading, and Writing) and ESL A011 (Listening & Speaking).

The goal of these courses is to promote student success in 

colleges and universities. 

In the Grammar, Reading, and Writing sequence, courses focus on improving students' skills in reading and writing through the study of grammar and academic vocabulary.   

In the Listening and Speaking sequence, courses focus on presentations, academic note-taking, and pronunciation.

Students can choose to take one sequence, the other sequence, or both sequences, depending on the skills that they need to succeed.  In additoin, students can place themselves in different levels of each sequence depending on their abilities with the help of the Guided Self-Placement Survey.