English Language Learners

We are here for you.

Here is how you can access help from us during the spring semester:

The School of Academic Advancement is available for virtual student video or phone advising appointments. To schedule a virtual or phone appointment with a Transition Specialist/Academic Advisor, please call (608) 258-2440, extension 1 or email saa@madisoncollege.edu. Please indicate if you prefer a Webex (online) or phone appointment, and provide your contact information.

Fo ESL General Assistance: saa@madisoncollege.edu

For ESL (TABE E) and General TABE Testing Inquiries: saatesting@madisoncollege.edu

We are available by phone Monday – Thursday 8:00-8:30pm and Friday 8:00-4:30

We guarantee kindness and safety in mind as we navigate the new normal. Learn more about our health and safety plans for the fall semester. https://madisoncollege.edu/covid


At Madison College, all English Language Learners can get the help they need to succeed in school, work and in life. Our English as a Second Language (ESL) classes are free and provide you support to improve your reading, writing and oral language skills. We offer Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced ESL classes, we have the right courses for all of your needs! 

To take ESL classes at Madison College, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Reside in the state of Wisconsin

Please click HERE to view all ESL classes

  • ESL Courses Eligibility Requirements
    Currently, we do not offer ESL classes to tourists visiting for temporary travel, au pairs or individuals with temporary visas. This includes individuals with visas sponsored by the University of Wisconsin-Madison, WESLI, or other institutions of higher education. If you are a professor, student or spouse of a scholar please consider additional community resources and off-campus options (PDF) available to you. 
    If you are interested in becoming or maintaining the F student visa, please visit our ​Center for International Education services at Madison College.
    We are here to serve you, if you would like to talk to a staff member further, please call (608) 258-2440 Opt 1 or email saa@madisoncollege.edu
  • New Students

    Currently due to COVID-19 campus closing restrictions please call 608-258-2440 Opt. 1 to discuss next steps.


    If you are new to Madison College and/or have never taken any ESL classes:


    Step 1: Create a New Student account

    Step 2: Attend Virtual Open Testing for ESL Classes

    • Your test score will determine your ESL level

    Step 3: Registration

  • Returning Students

    Please contact our office at (608) 258-2440 Option 1 and we will tell you if you need to take the ESL Placement Test, or help you register for ESL classes virtually. 

  • ESL Classes

    Please click HERE to view all ESL class descriptions. 


    You must have updated ESL test scores in order to register for classes. If you are unable to enroll, please call 608-258-2440 Option 1. 

  • Community Resources

    Madison College also works together with community partners to offer ESL classes at other locations around the Madison area. These classes take place in a flexible lab setting so you can attend when it best fits your schedule. You don’t need an appointment to take ESL classes at one of these outreach locations, you can just drop in and register during scheduled class time. Contact the School of Academic Advancement at (608) 258-2440 for more information about off-campus options. (PDF)

  • Success Stories
    Meet Bertha Ortiz-ESL Success Story at Madison College

    Bertha (Mexico)

    Bertha started in beginning ESL and earned her GED at Madison College. She learned English so she can communicate better with her co-workers and her supervisors at her job. 



    Meet Lili Jones - Madison College ESL Success Story

    Lili (China)

    Lili was brand new to the country when she began taking ESL classes. She earned her GED at Madison College and is enrolled in the liberal arts transfer program at Madison College and wants to attend UW-Madison.



    Abondio - Madison College ESL Success Story

    Abondio (Sudan)

    Abondio started in ESL and finished his 5.09 HSED in 2014. He has a technical certificate in Machining from Madison College.

English Language Learners may also find these Madison College resources helpful: