ELS/Santa Monica is located in downtown Santa Monica. It is conveniently close to all the attractions of metropolitan Los Angeles. With its palm tree-lined walkways and breathtaking sunsets, Santa Monica enjoys a warm and mild climate year-round. This diverse and artistic community maintains the charming, relaxed atmosphere of a small town. The popular Santa Monica Pier and colorful Third Street Promenade, with sidewalk singers, artists, movie theaters, shops and restaurants, are located only blocks away. Santa Monica also has many outdoor activities for sports enthusiasts, including surfing, skateboarding, biking and swimming.
Homestays in the area(Homestay)
Host family students are responsible for their personal transportation. Most homestays are located within 30-45 minutes of the center. In summer months this may increase to an hour commute due to beach traffic. Most students commute to ELS by bus, although there are a few families within walking distance.
Price per Session
Meals / week or Meal Credit
14 meals per week
Shared Apartments at Barrington Plaza(Student Residence (Off Campus))
Please note: Due to the cancellation policy of Barrington Plaza, payment in full is required for any reserved session. Any cancellation within 28 days of the reserved session results in forfeiture of the payment for that session.
Barrington Plaza is located in Brentwood, an attractive and safe neighborhood within a 5 minute walk to nearby shops and restaurants. It is also a 25-30 minute bus ride to the famous Beverly Hills neighborhood where students could shop and dine with celebrities.
Barrington Plaza offers shared (double) bedrooms in a fully furnished two bedroom two bathroom apartment. The apartment includes utilities, high speed internet, air-conditioning, heater, cable television and a bi-weekly cleaning service. Bedrooms include two twin-sized beds, two study desks, chairs, lamp, pillows, sheets, and towels. The kitchen includes a stove, dishwasher, full-sized refrigerator, microwave, coffee maker, toaster, plates, cups, utensils, cooking equipment, iron, ironing table, and cleaning equipment.
When a bedroom is shared, students are usually paired with another student from a different country. Each apartment is designated as either male or female student apartments.
Barrington Plaza offers the following advantages:
-Located in a safe residential neighborhood just 5.5 KM from ELS
-24/7 Building Security
-Front Desk service
-Big Blue Bus to ELS and anywhere in Santa Monica or Los Angeles
-Walking distance to local shops, restaurants, grocery stores & entertainment venues
-Shared living room with TV
-Shared dining room
-Shared fully equipped kitchen
-Large patios in each apartment
-Heated Olympic-sized swimming pool
Price per Session
Meals / week or Meal Credit
Not included, but students may cook in the communal and well-equipped kitchen, or eat at the nearby restaurants that are within walking distance of Barrington Plaza.
Hostelling International(Student Residence (Off Campus))
Coed hostel with males & females in separate rooms. ELS students share hostel with Americans and other foreign visitors. Shared quadruple rooms in private student hostel. Shared central bathrooms (1 per floor). Community kitchen, lounge and internet kiosks. Linens are included. Self-service laundry machines are available in the Hostel (small fee).
Security: There is a front desk with security open 24 hours per day. There are no resident assistants.
The Hostel accommodates tourists as well as students. While every effort is made to put ELS students only in our quads, there is a possibility that a student will have to temporarily share a room with a tourist.
Price per Session
Meals / week or Meal Credit
7 meals per week
What is Conditional Admission?
Institutions in the ELS University Conditional Admission Network offer conditional admission to students who are academically admissible based on the student’s academic record and other university and/or departmental and program requirements, but who have not yet demonstrated English proficiency. Your admission is “conditional” based upon satisfying English proficiency through completion of a specified level of the ELS English for Academic Purposes program and any other specific requirements prior to full admission. Once these requirements are fulfilled, you are able to fully matriculate. These requirements will be outlined on your Conditional Letter of Admission, and your selected ELS center will assist you in completing all of the necessary requirements for matriculation.
Additional matriculation requirements may include other required scores, for example, GMAT® or GRE® for graduate programs.
Our ELS University Partners will offer a Conditional Letter of Admission (CLA) detailing the additional requirements needed for matriculation. You and your family can be assured that you have a university placement and ELS registration prior to departing for the USA.
What is the Conditional Admission Process?
- Find a university via our University Finder
- Apply for university admission and enroll for English studies at ELS Language Centers with help from a local ELS authorized Counseling Agent.
- If you are an acceptable candidate for university admission, you receive a letter of "Conditional university admission subject to English proficiency and submission of any other required documentation for matriculation."
- Study at any of the 60 ELS Centers in the USA to fulfill the university entrance requirement for English proficiency.
- Begin your university program!
Meet the Staff
Monique loves working with international students and helping them pursue their dreams. She comes to ELS after directing intensive English programs at Southern Oregon University and St. Mary’s School in Southern Oregon. She holds a Masters degree in Education with an endorsement in TESOL. One of her favorite pastimes is to hang out with her grown-up children pursuing creative activities and living in Brooklyn, Miami, Portland, Ashland, and Los Angeles. She is also passionate about international travel!
Michele Warnock has a Masters in TESOL and twenty years of experience working in many different capacities and settings within the ESL field. Most recently, Michele taught in the ESL department at Santa Monica College. She loves writing theme-based curricula and created a course based on the fiction genre mysteries. As an
undergraduate, Michele studied physical anthropology and lived and worked on a monkey colony with 3000 free-ranging primates.
Assistant Academic Director
Sharyn has a long association with ELS Language Centers. She has held numerous positions: marketing consultant/Germany; Instructional Specialist; summer programs Director; Academic Director; curriculum developer; and researcher/writer of A Narrative History of ELS Language Centers. She created The Global Citizen curriculum for the ELS Masters levels, as well as courses on Global Poetry, Travel Talk, California Culture and Here’s Hollywood. Sharyn studied, and worked in Heidelberg, Germany and taught with the US Peace Corps in Malaysia. She is a frequent presenter at TESOL and NAFSA conventions, focusing on topics related to culture, peace and globalism. Sharyn has received the ELS International Pathway Award for Life-time Contribution to International Education. She says, “We teach language. We also teach the vocabulary of kindness, respect, understanding, peace and partnership."
International Student Advisor
Elizabeth graduated from Cal State Long Beach with a B.A. in International Studies and has TESOL certification. She loves to travel, has spent time all over the world. She recently spent a summer doing an internship working with international students in Sydney, Australia. Elizabeth speaks English, Spanish, some Arabic, some Russian, some Japanese, and a bit of several other languages. She always knows what's up with everyone at the center, so there is no point trying to pull the wool over her eyes! Elizabeth genuinely cares about each and every student, and they know it.
Aaren began working as Registrar at ELS Language Centers, Santa Monica in October 2008. Prior to ELS, she received her Bachelor of Science degree from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona where she majored in Communications. Aaren has always had an appreciation for intercultural communications. As a Los Angeles native, she grew up studying and working closely with people of various cultural backgrounds. Working for ELS has given her the opportunity to meet people from all over the world, which she thoroughly enjoys.
Douglas has had a 30-year tenure with ELS. He graduated with a degree in fine arts from UCLA , going on to teach in secondary education with the US Peace Corps in Korea. Douglas later received an M.A. in TESOL from the Monterey Institute of International Studies. In addition to his full-time work at ELS, Douglas has taught for many years at the L.A. Unified adult school program. Douglas' main pedagogical focus is the interactive and communicative use of language in the classroom. Douglas recently became a grandpa for the fifth time!
Frank graduated from the University of Connecticut with a major in history and political science. After volunteering as a secondary school teacher with the US Peace Corps in Guatemala , he received an M.A. in English and Linguistics from the University of Southern Illinois. In 1976, Frank began working with ELS Language Centers in Los Angeles. In addition to his long teaching career with ELS, Frank served as Director of Curriculum for two years. We will celebrate 40 years with Frank at ELS this summer, 2016!
Patrick graduated from Virginia Tech in 1999 and first worked with the Virginia Film Commission in locations management assistance. Although this was an exciting job, he always yearned for opportunities in cultural exchange and the chance to see the world. This desire led him to Ilsan, South Korea, in 2002 where he taught English for three years. He discovered a passion, and continued teaching English at ELS/Santa Monica after returning to the United States late in 2005. Patrick's commitment to his students is evident in his greeting of each individually every morning and his use of each student's native language in that greeting. He is warm, genuine, and provides a classroom environment conducive to language learning for students of all needs, goals, and perspectives.
Nicole Haning holds a B.A. in Literature, Science and the Arts with concentrations in Spanish and French from the University of Iowa and a Masters in TESOL from Adelphi University. She is committed to continued growth and professional development, and has presented at both CATESOL and TESOL International conferences. She is fluent in Spanish and English and has lived in Spain, France, Colombia and Chile and traveled extensively in Europe and the Americas. She has been teaching multiple languages for a total of eight years on three continents at language schools and community colleges. She loves music, art and the outdoors and frequently goes to music events, hiking in the beautiful Santa Monica mountains or kayaking along the southern California coast. She is a painter and is always looking to capture more time to pursue art. Nicole's creative classroom techniques includes games to reinforce grammar and vocabulary concepts and rich literature-based units for effective language learning. Nicole really enjoys teaching and the wonderful international environment at ELS.
Monty Minchin has been a dedicated educator for a number of years. He has taught at both the high school and adult education level. He is highly personable and uses various teaching strategies to bring out the best in his students. Monty earned his Bachelor of Arts in Economics from UCLA and a Masters in Education from Pepperdine University with an emphasis on ESL. His favorite thing to do is spend time with his three beautiful children, now nearly grown up!
Alla Bokhman was born in the former Soviet Union and immigrated to the United States with her family at the age of eight. At that time, there were no special programs provided by LA Unified for English learners so Alla learned English through immersion. After acquiring the English language, Alla often found herself explaining and teaching new vocabulary and phrases to non-English speaking family members in an attempt to teach them what she had learned. Alla’s passion for learning and teaching the English language led her to complete a BA in English at the University of California, Los Angeles and an MA in Education at Pepperdine’s Graduate School of Education and Psychology. Alla's commitment to her students' academic education is evident in their success in progressive language acquisition after being in her classes as they move through the levels at ELS.
Alla is a firm believer in Howard Gardener’s theory of Multiple Intelligence, which she applies in her lessons by teaching to a variety of learning styles. Alla believes that students need to see, hear, speak, and connect to the English language on a personal level and as a primary mode of communication in order to acquire it quickly and easily. Based on her own experience as an ESL learner and the experience of her family members, Alla believes ESL students who fully commit themselves to using English as a primary form of communication while studying in the United States are likely to acquire the language successfully in a shorter amount of time.
Jonelle Williams was born in Brooklyn, NY but has been a resident of Los Angeles since 1994. She received both her B.A. and M.A. degrees in East Asian Studies (Japan concentration) from UCLA, where she also obtained her TESOL Certification through the UCLA Applied Linguistics Department. While English is her primary language, she has had the pleasure of studying five different languages to different degrees: Japanese, Spanish, Chinese, Korean and French. She can frequently be heard speaking these languages in the halls of ELS during break time, along with some Arabic, Portuguese, and Russian words that she picked up along the way from her students.
Jonelle loves to laugh and enjoys teaching her classes in a fun and light hearted manner. A firm believer that learning should be an enjoyable experience, Jonelle's teaching style aims to create a relaxed atmosphere where her students can feel at home but are motivated to learn. Jonelle is currently completing her coursework for an Masters in TESOL through Adelphi University. She is also a frequent presenter at professional conferences, including TESOL International, CATESOL, and EnglishUSA.
What else? As many of her students know, Jonelle loves guessing games, her favorite food is Indian food, and she enjoys talking about all things "metaphysical and new-age." In her spare time, she loves to do nothing. Just kidding! She loves to do anything except work.
Darren has been teaching at ELS Santa Monica for five years, and his students delight in his creative approach to language learning. He loves the outdoors, theater, and tennis. In his free time, he can be found hiking, biking, camping, playing tennis, and enjoying the beautiful weather Southern California has to offer.
Jessica recently transferred from ELS Silicon Valley to ELS Santa Monica - lucky are we! She holds an MA TESOL and has several years of teaching experience. She speaks Korean and English, and enjoys the opportunity to occasionally use Korean with our students. Her life is filled with joy with the arrival of her new little girl, Eva!
February 20, 2016
Today I am writing to say thank you to all of you! All the teachers, all people from ELS staff. When we are living abroad, everything is scary, the language that you don't dominate, the new place, you don't know no one, everything is new, different. At ELS I could find very nice people, very nice friends and teachers. The ELS staff is a kind of people always willing to help and support the students. It for me was really important and helped me a lot. I really would like that you could say to everyone that all of you has a special place in my heart forever. Thanks, thanks so much for everything.
December 1, 2015
In universities, it is not as easy as language centers. Professors might not teach students as language centers, because they think students should be possible to understand what do they teach. Therefore, previewing and reviewing are the most important things in university lives, to be honest, sometimes students have to study by themselves. However, even though the process is tough, students could promote their academic knowledge in universities. Hope all of the future university students who are in ELS will not any problems of studying, and reach their personal goals in the future!
December 1, 2015
I am totally satisfied with ELS Santa Monica. Teachers are very helpful. The study process, the schedule is very organized. I love Santa Monica, I love this area. For example, after attending this school I am going to Santa Monica College.
July 25, 2014
Hello. My name is MINGI LEE. I am from Korea. For me, ELS is one of best place to study English and meet many international students. When I came to America, I was scared because I knew nobody in America. But, I could make many foreign students by taking a class and talking with other people in ELS. Also, many teachers in ELS helped me to adjust to live more comfortable in America. If you want to make a good relationship with foreign students and adjust to America, I recommend you to attend ELS.
March 1, 2013
“Good morning!” That is what I said the first time I came here, just this. When you arrive in a place, letting all of you in your native country, you feel shy, lost and alone, but everything quickly became what I expected all my life of this experience. ELS Santa Monica is a little school, so everyone knows each other and when you begin to introduce yourself to the other students you discover that everybody is in the same situation and it is at that point you begin to just enjoy your “new life.” Not only the students are very friendly, but the staff is awesome also. If you have a problem super-Julie and wonder-Lauren are always ready to listen to you and especially to help you! I am not in my country but I already miss everything of ELS and Santa Monica, the sunny day, Nicole singing in the corridor, Patrick’s laugh and a lot of other things (the list is too big to tell everything).
My mother told me when I was sad my first days: “Now you want to come home, but at the end you will stay there. We cry two times: when we arrive and when we leave.” It is what happened to me, I loved a lot ELS and Santa Monica that I can’t stop crying because I have to leave.
Now it is time to go home, and I want to finish telling everybody a big “THANK YOU and GOOD-BYE!”
July 16, 2012
Like other people, I came to Santa Monica, waking up in the morning, having breakfast, and getting ready for school. Then, I go to downtown Santa Monica, to the most beautiful place in Los Angeles, near Third Street Promenade, where I study English. I always experience something new, and this gives me the motivation and drive to come and continue my work. Some things that make me so excited to come are meeting people from new cultures and making friends from different nations all around the world. The teachers are friendly and accessible whenever I need assistance. There are a lot of activities that can be fun and educational at the same time, like movie day, which is offered by ELS Language Center.
Everyday I go to school and I meet my classmates. We get to our classes in the morning and when we finish, we go to lunch either on Third Street Promenade or on the beach. Being so close to the beach and the Promenade for lunch and leisure activities is definitely nice. After lunch, we have our afternoon classes, which are both fun and interesting. After we finish our afternoon classes, we usually take a walk anywhere we wish, because everything is so close in Santa Monica.
I would say that studying in Santa Monica is the best decision I have ever made and one of the greatest things I have ever done in my life.
March 8, 2012
Los Angeles, the City of Angels, is like her name: beautiful, clean and sunny, and Santa Monica is the best part of Los Angeles, because we have the beach, ocean, Hollywood and great weather. We are also the safest part of Los Angeles, so we don't need to worry about any crime. It's a great place to study.
Santa Monica ELS has a great location. We are close to the ocean and shopping street. So we don't need to worry about what we can do after class, but during the class we can have lots of fun. Teachers are funny, friendly and helpful. They care about your whole life, not only grades, so Santa Monica is a good choice.
March 8, 2012
I arrived in Santa Monica three months ago, and I love studying here because I have learned a lot of English. At ELS Santa Monica, teachers are very patient and friendly, classes are dynamic and funny, students do not feel the time passing, and when the classes finish, the school has already planned some activities for us, such as movie day, gym activities, bowling or Cirque du Soleil. All activities are awesome and amazing, but to me, the most important part has been the friendships that we made here. Here I have discovered different cultures and made life long friends through speaking English, so... thanks, ELS.
Jan Schramm, Germany
September 17, 2009
For my future career I need to improve my English. I asked my family and friends if they know a way how to improve my English very fast and successfully.
One friend told me that there is one school called ELS, which was exactly what I was searching for. After that I got in contact with the school and they were very friendly and warm.
The next thing I had to decide was the place. I had no idea, because for me it was my first trip ever to the USA.
I searched the Internet and asked a friend, who is working in a travel agency, about visiting and studying in America. He told me that California, the golden state, is the best place to go. There are so many friendly people in Santa Monica in particular and it’s very warm, having a diverse landscapes with everything from deserts to the ocean to snowy hills, all within a couple of hours of each other. When I arrived in Santa Monica all I dreamt it could be came true and it was even bigger than I thought.
On the first day I felt a bit lost and had no idea what to do. This all changed after I took the first step into the school. Everyone was very warm and welcomed me. I quickly made a lot of new friends. Everyone helps you if you have problems or don’t understand something. The staff in the school also helps you if you have some problems with your homestay or your room in the Hostel and they take their time to satisfy you.
I also recommend the Hostel in front of ELS. You will certainly get a lot of friends there and you can plan to do something together.
The teachers know how to improve your English and they even do things with you together so you learn a lot about the habits, history and the American way of life.
These are my last 5 days here and I am really sad I have to leave this country but I’m quite sure this country will see me again.
June 20, 2016
We spent the afternoon in the beach and played games
December 17, 2015
Ice Skating at the Winterlit Events
December 17, 2015
All you can carry pumpkin patch and a Costume party and Contest!
September 3, 2015
Our students volunteered to help sort through donated materials at our local reDiscover Center.
Session 5A 2015 Activity Calendar
Session 5A 2015
Session 6A 2015 Activity Calendar
Summer time is beginning with the Thai Fest on the Pier with Food, Music, and Dancing
Session 6A 2016 Activity Calendar
Welcome to summer at ELS Santa Monica!