Language Institute

The Language Institute

Welcoming the World through Caring Relationships and English Instruction


For All English Levels

The Language Institute at University Presbyterian Church offers classes to improve your reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills.

We also have opportunities for you to practice your conversational English.

Email Kristine for more info.

We’re celebrating our 42 years of welcoming the world through caring relationships and English instruction! 
New Classes & Winter Registration

Our Classes

Buy 4 classes, get the 5th class Free! (spouses included). Email for the discount code.
Time Classes Why should I take this class?
9:30 - 11 Tuesday and 11-12 Thursday
Beginning English
Learn basics for reading, writing, listening and speaking with an experienced and patient teacher. Pat Finlayson
11-12:30 Tuesday
Book and Movie – Boys in the Boat
Join this Upper Intermediate/Advanced class for a fun course in Seattle and University of Washington history. Watch George Clooney’s new movie coming in December, read the “Young Adult” version of the book over winter and spring quarter, visit the boat house on UW campus and meet a rower! You will improve your vocabulary, reading, and discussion skills. Book provided. Ken Grafham
1-2:30 Tuesday
Culture, Idioms, Discussion
Advanced learners meet to learn and discuss culture and current events with Bruce Meachum (retired lawyer) facilitating. Gain confidence in speaking and using idioms. Bruce Meachum
1-2:30 Tuesday
Intermediate Listening, Discussion and Pronunciation 102
Learn how to listen and understand in new ways. Discuss topics in small groups. Learn American culture and pronunciation tips! Carol Overbeck and Sharon Meachum
10:00 - 11:30 Wednesday
Speaking Made Simple 102
Intermediate Are you shy and afraid to speak? This class will build your confidence in a natural way. Step-by-step instruction and practice in a comfortable environment will show you how to improve! Jane and Richard Lewis
11 - 12:30 Thursdays
Grammar and Beyond
Intermediate learners review and learn grammar in a new and fun way! Join this class if you want to feel more confident in your speaking and writing. Improve with short in-class writing and speaking prompts in class. Textbook provided. Gretchen House
1-2:15 Thursday
Listen Carefully TED Talks 1
Do you want to listen and understand English without subtitles? This class will help you with listening skills such as prediciting and guessing vocabulary words. TED Talks will be used in very short listening sections. You will learn listening, speaking, and discussion skills. Textbook provided. Bethany Rookus (UW graduate student)
Flexible times
Private Tutoring
Upper Intermediate/Advanced Are you working on a specific project or need work on a specific skill? Do you want to read articles or a book with a tutor? Bring it to a 1:1 session.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • English language-learning adults from beginner to advanced
  • Short and long-term visitors, post-docs, researchers, family members, immigrants, refugees
  • Affordable in-person and zoom classes
  • Personalized instruction, small classes
  • Caring instructors – highly educated professionals
  • Classes are relational, giving plenty of time for conversation and questions
  • No passing or failing – you decide how much and how fast you will learn
  • Choose from academic and unique elective classes and/or one-on-one tutoring

Classes are 8 weeks long.

2024 Winter Quarter: January 8 – March 8

2024 Spring Quarter: March 25 – May 25

2024 Fall Quarter: September 25 – November 17

8-week classes are offered for a one-time $60 fee. Private tutoring costs a one-time fee of $200 for 8 weekly sessions.

Discounts and scholarships are available for refugees and low-income immigrants.

Please send an email so we can connect and help you start out well.

Please use this document to help you identify your level.

What Students Are Saying

“If it weren’t for Language Institute’s guidance and practice with me, I never would have received the fellowship I applied for. The time my tutor spent with me indeed helped me a lot. Thank you so much for your dedication.”  —University of Washington post-doctoral student

“This is my first time attending this kind of class. It is so different. I am grateful for patient teachers.”

“I don’t want another certificate. I want to experience the culture. I can do that here.”

“I can listen to different opinions in the class and learn from others.”

“The NEWS class forces me to open my horizons.”

“This class helps me think about parenting deeply. I can bring more tools and more strategy to my parenting like how to guide when your child hits somebody. This class is really efficient and important for parents. “

“I was lonely, shy, and afraid to speak English. For the first three months, I spent a lot of time at home alone. Then I joined Language Institute. Now I’ve made a lot of friends and feel much more confident speaking English!”

“At first, I didn’t imagine that I could read an English book until the end but following Valerie’s way is very helpful to me, and I made it. I’m proud of myself, and I would recommend this class.”

“Great teachers, friendly classmates, low student-to-teacher ratio, inexpensive tuition for high-quality classes. I LOVE my classes, and they keep me motivated.”

“Language Institute has been not only a forum where our family learns English but also a support group and a great social network that helps ease life’s hardships.”

“I love all my teachers. They all are supportive, nice, inspiring, patient, enthusiastic, and teach with real passion. I appreciate being part of this lovely community.”

“The parenting class helps me a lot to improve my parenting skills and increase my confidence by sharing my trouble with other moms. I really appreciate your help. I really recommend others to join Language institute.”

“The encouragement and support I get from my class is a priceless present.” 

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