Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


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Current Students

The ELI has a special Current Student Website that has all the information that you will need in order to manage your student life at the ELI.

Go to the Current Student Website ➤

Need help?

In this page, you will be able to find answers to some of the most frequently asked questions below. If you still need help with a question, please feel free to contact us!

ELI Refund Policy

What is the ELI refund policy?

The ELI refund policy, which is stated on all of our application forms, is:

  • The application fee of $100, due with your application, is nonrefundable.
  • The tuition deposit of $75, due with your application, is nonrefundable within 30 days of session start date.
  • The dormitory deposit of $250, due with your application, is nonrefundable within 30 days of session start date.
  • The homestay fee of $170, due with your application, is nonrefundable within 30 days of session start date.
  • The ELI offers no refund for late arrival, early withdrawal, or dismissal.


I want to bring my family with me to the ELI. How can I do this?

Students on an F-1 visa may bring their dependents (spouses and children) to the US while they study at the ELI. Simply fax a copy of each dependent’s passport with your ELI Application and the ELI will issue dependent I-20 forms. Also, make sure that your bank statement has enough funds in it to cover an extra $500 per dependent per session you will attend.

My company is sponsoring me to study at the ELI. Do I need the company’s bank statement?

For corporate sponsorships, instead of a company bank statement, your sponsor must send letter of support, on company letterhead and signed by a financial officer, indicating that the company will financially sponsor you to study at the ELI.

How long does it take to get an I-20?

When we receive your completed application, bank statement and/or letter of support, and deposit and application fees, we will process your enrollment and express mail your I-20 to you. (For fastest processing, we strongly recommend that you use credit card to pay your deposit and application fees.) It usually takes 48 hours from the time your application is approved until the I-20 form is express mailed to you.

What is the deadline for applying?

Although there is no deadline for applying to the ELI, we STRONGLY recommend that you apply at least three months in advance of your session start date, to ensure plenty of time to obtain your student visa.

See your program’s start date

When does the ELI change its pricing?

Normally, a modest 3-4% increase can be expected each year. Pricing becomes effective August 31 of each year.

What is a “semester discount”?

The ELI now offers semester pricing, which is a tuition discount given to those students who enroll in and pay for two sessions at a time. Please see our application form for the cost breakdown.

ELI Orientation

What is the placement test?

The placement test has four parts: grammar, reading, and vocabulary proficiency; listening; an interview; and an essay. The ELI uses these tests to determine which level you will be assigned. You will not receive the scores from these tests, but your level will reflect your score.

When do I find out my level?

All ELI students will receive their schedules on Opening Day, which list courses and levels, at the opening day meeting. The ELI staff makes the class assignments during the weekend before the session begins; therefore, your class and level assignments are not available before Opening Day.

What will we do at the orientation meetings?

At the first orientation meeting, on Monday, you will meet the ELI director and learn about some ELI & university policies. The second meeting, on Friday, will cover adjusting to life in a new culture, campus safety and other topics. You will meet the host family coordinator and representatives from other UD departments. You must attend both meetings.

Meal Plans

How can I sign up for a meal plan?

Meal plans are not required for any ELI students. However, meal plans are available in blocks of 100 meals or 50 meals. You can pick up a meal plan registration form at the ELI or at the Student Services Building.

Learn more about ELI dining options ➤


How can I contact the Homestay Coordinator?

Mrs. Nancy Purcell, the ELI Homestay Coordinator, can be reached by email at

Learn more about our homestay program ➤

When can I meet my homestay family?

The ELI Homestay Coordinator, Mrs. Nancy Purcell, makes all of the homestay arrangements for our students. She will contact you to confirm your homestay and arrival arrangements.

Learn more about our homestay program ➤

Can I get a homestay close to the ELI building?

Less than half of the homestays available are within walking distance of the ELI. These are filled on a first-come, first-served basis.

Learn more about our homestay program ➤

Can I cook my own meals?

Yes, you can stay in a homestay that does not provide meals, but you can use their kitchen to prepare your own food.

Learn more about our homestay program ➤

Do I have to spend time with the family?

Your first priority at the ELI is to improve your English. The homestays understand that you need to do your homework and study. It is your decision how much time you spend with the family.

Learn more about our homestay program ➤

What kinds of families are there?

Many are married couples with children, some are married couples whose children are grown and live away from home, and others and single men and women. There is a variety of homestays to choose from.

Learn more about our homestay program ➤

Can I smoke in my homestay?

Most of the homestays are “smoke-free”. Their rules say that if you smoke, you must smoke outside the home.

Learn more about our homestay program ➤

Host Families and Language Partners

How can I meet Americans?

Two good ways for you to meet people and practice your English are ELI’s host family and language partner programs. These programs introduce ELI students to UD students and local families and let you spend some time learning about American culture. You can learn more about these programs at the orientation meetings.

Learn more about ELI activities ➤

Learn more about our homestay program ➤

Bank Accounts

Where can I open a bank account?

Most ELI students use the Wilmington Savings Fund Society (WSFS) bank, which has an office on campus in the Trabant University Center. The bank’s office hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Mail and E-mail

What’s my address?

All students can use the ELI address to receive mail. Address mail to:

Your Name
c/o UD English Language Institute
108 East Main Street
Newark, DE 19711

Will I be able to use email?

All ELI students have access to full university facilities, including computing centers where you can use email and the internet.

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