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International GSIs in LSA: ELI 994 College Teaching in the U.S.: Pedagogy, Culture and Language

IMPORTANT NOTE:  ELI 994 will take place IN PERSON this Summer: July 20- August 9, 2022.

Graduate students from non-English-medium undergraduate universities who expect to assume graduate instructor duties in LSA departments in the next academic year must attend ELI 994, a course developed and conducted jointly by the University's English Language Institute (ELI) and the Center for Research on Learning and Teaching (CRLT). 

International GSIs improve classroom communication skills and practice reflective teaching methods while, at the same time, receive language and teaching feedback from peers, undergraduates, and instructors. Participants increase awareness and control of the language of the classroom, explore current pedagogical theories, and practice a diverse array of teaching skills in a realistic classroom setting in front of current U-M undergraduates. Participants also learn about the University of Michigan’s diverse undergraduate population, campus culture, and resources. Course assignments include video-recorded practice teaching and feedback, office hour role-plays, and observations. Participants receive feedback from instructors, from experienced GSIs and GSMs, and from current U-M undergraduates. 

Winter Semester: In Winter, ELI 994 is a 10-week course for currently-enrolled GSIs in LSA. Summer Semester: In Summer, ELI 994 is a 3-week Intensive course for new LSA graduate students who are expected to teach in their first semester. (2 credits) 
Questions? Please contact ELI’s GSI Advisor Brenda Prouser Imber at

ELI 994 (Winter)

In the Winter term, ELI 994 is designed for prospective graduate student instructors who are currently enrolled in a graduate program at the University of Michigan, whose language skills should enable them to qualify for LSA teaching assignments by the Fall term after the Winter course, and who are being considered for classroom assignments in LSA departments.

This 10-week GSI course is required for all LSA graduate students who:

  • did not receive an undergraduate degree from a U.S. college or university, or

  • did not earn an undergraduate degree in a university in which English was the medium of instruction.

Note to prospective GSIs:

If an LSA department considers you a prospective GSI, they submit your name to the ELI and you receive an Enrollment Memo via e-mail. The memo briefly describes the program and contains links to procedures and information. Upon receipt of your Enrollment Memo, you must click on the hyperlinks so you can complete the various pre-course procedures by the specified deadlines.

Questions? Please contact ELI’s GSI Advisor Brenda Prouser Imber at

ELI 994 (Summer)

IMPORTANT NOTE: The University of Michigan has announced that all Summer 2020 instruction will take place remotely. ELI 994 will take place online this year.

In Summer, ELI 994 is a 3-week full-time Intensive course for new LSA graduate students who are expected to teach in their first semester.

Testing: ELI 994 participants are required to take the GSI OET after completion of the program. Test appointments are scheduled by participants’ department  during the two weeks following the end of the ELI 994 program. The GSI OET test is administered by Michigan Language Assessment. Click here for more information.

Questions? Please contact ELI’s GSI Advisor Brenda Prouser Imber at

What to expect as a Summer 994 Student?

NOTE: ELI 994 will take place online in Summer 2020. The following information refers to the in-person version of the course. 

This fun and intensive course is designed for graduate students new to the University of Michigan whose undergraduate education was not primarily in English and who are nominated for GSI teaching positions in the College of Literature, Science & the Arts in their first year.

Before the course

ELI 994 participants are invited to join a group of University of Michigan students for an optional campus tour on the day before the course begins. This tour includes all the classroom buildings where the Summer ELI 994 course meets, plus lots of other useful destinations on Central Campus.

When the course starts

The first day of ELI 994 begins promptly at 9:00 am, in a room to be announced (TBA) on Central Campus. Participants receive an orientation to the course and begin to get to know each other.  After a break for lunch, participants receive a University orientation from the U-M International Center which includes a required visa check-in.

Interpreting the course schedule

The ELI 994 schedule includes several different kinds of sessions:

  1. Practice Teaching.  Each participant in ELI 994 has five opportunities to teach in front of real undergraduate students during this course. Each practice teaching event is videotaped, and participants receive feedback from their instructor, the undergraduates they teach, and experienced GSIs.
  2. Language and pedagogy.  These sessions are designed to enhance the English language skills needed for specific teaching contexts and to provide participants with a range of tools to effectively teach undergraduates in the University of Michigan’s College of LSA.
  3. Pronunciation.  An ELI pronunciation expert works with participants to enhance their ability to speak clearly and comprehensibly in lab and classroom settings.

Where the course takes place

ELI 994 takes place on the U-M Central Campus. All U-M classrooms are equipped with wireless internet connections.


Meals are not provided during the course, except on the first day, when lunch is provided. After the first day, “Lunch break" means that there are no course activities and that there is time for lunch or relaxation.

Extracurricular Program

Our optional Extracurricular Program offers a variety of activities including shopping trips, informal sports events, movies and lunchtime English conversation gatherings. Most events are free.

Helpful Information about Ann Arbor and the UM Campus



NOTE for SUMMER 2020: ELI 994 is being offered online in summer. No housing is being supplied since students are not required to be on campus.

University housing for participants will be provided by U-M, at a location to be announced.

Questions about housing? Contact Bill Vlisides,

University Health Services (UHS) Information

Campus and City Life

ELI + U-M Resources for GSIs

Here are links to additional information about ELI's year-round GSI program and campus partners

Helpful Links
Visit Helpful Information for GSIs to find links and information about the following:

  • Arrival
  • Housing
  • Deadlines and Dates
  • Health Services Information
  • Campus and City Life
  • Inside the Classroom
  • Outside the Classroom