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ESL Program Details

Program Details

ESL helps students with varying levels of English proficiency through coursework, interaction with native speakers of English, and individualized language practice. The program consists of six levels of English language study, each offered during our fall and spring terms. Each level has 20 hours of class time per week. Students may study up to 1 year in the ESL program. ESL courses do not provide college credit. Course topics include study in listening and speaking, reading and culture, and grammar and writing.

Cost Estimates

IELI Cost Estimate*

(per semester)

Full Time Tuition: 


Mandatory Health Insurance:


College Fees:


Textbooks/Supplies (varies):


Estimated Total:



*This does not include housing or meals. 

Participants in the ESL program are not required to live on-campus or purchase a meal plan, but on-campus housing and meal plans are available for all ESL students. For the latest pricing, please visit the Residence Life Office.

Application and Financial Documentation

1. Complete and return the application.

2. Complete the required International Student Supplemental form FSA-4 (Student Financial Statement).

3. A separate bank statement on bank letterhead should be submitted along with the FSA-4 form showing at least $22,867  USD available for the student. This number is based on the cost of a year's tuition, fees and housing since we issue your I-20 for a whole academic year. 

4. Submit a copy of your passport biographical page or green card.

5. The non-refundable application fee is $50. Upon receiving your complete application, details on how to pay this fee will be provided.


**Please make sure to include all items in your application packet; an incomplete application will not be considered for admission. A $50 application processing fee applies to all incoming applications.

**A student must prove they have access to a year’s worth of funds before an I-20 can be issued. Your bank statement must show access to $22,867 USD (include conversion if not in USD). Contact our office before filing out the FSA-4 if you have a sponsor in the US that will provide housing and meals for you while studying. 


PDF Downloads:


Checklist for Applying



Transfer I-20 Form


Application Deadline

Admissions are accepted throughout the year, but to ensure you have the most time to acquire a student Visa, please submit your completed application no later than July 1 for fall admission or December 1 for spring admission

* If you are already in the U.S. on an F2 visa or plan to tranfer your F1 visa you can be accepted a week prior to classes beginning based on space in the class.

Submitting your Application

To apply via email: complete each item on the checklist above, attach to an email and sent to with the subject line “ESL Application”.


To Apply via mail or courier:

Complete each item on the checklist above and mail a complete packet to the following address:


SUNY Buffalo State

Intensive English Language Institute

1300 Elmwood Ave                                                    

South Wing 410                                 

Buffalo, NY 14222


If you have any questions about Buffalo State or are interested in learning more about admission to one of our many degree granting programs, please e-mail the IELI, or call +1 (716) 878-5331.

The International Student and Scholar Services Office helps students make a successful transition to Buffalo State and the United States. To learn more about services for our international students, visit their web site.


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Center for Global Engagement

1300 Elmwood Ave  •  Twin Rise South Wing 410 •  Buffalo, NY 14222
Phone: (716) 878-4620