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ELS Chicago, Illinois at Dominican University

Learn English in Chicago on a university campus with ELS Language Centers.

dominican-university-logo 1-min

About ELS Chicago

Set on the banks of beautiful Lake Michigan, the USA's third largest city offers amazing architecture and parks, and nonstop music, arts, and culture.

Learn English in River Forest on the beautiful ivy-covered campus of Dominican University and enjoy an American university student experience at ELS. At ELS Chicago, you'll combine Chicago's fast-paced city energy with a safe, tranquil life in River Forest, Illinois, a pleasant suburb of West Chicago and the home of Dominican University.

Set along beautiful Lake Michigan, Chicago, offers a vast array of exciting activities for students to enjoy while living an amazing English learning and American culture experience. Discover Chicago's famous pizza joints, ethnic foods and fine dining, world-famous museums, amazing music festivals and outdoor concerts, sporting events, and landscapes, with  outdoor activities to enjoy year-round!

ELS Language Center (Chicago, Illinois) is approved by the Division of Private Business and Vocational Schools of the Illinois Board of Higher Education.


Learn English in Chicago at ELS
on the campus of
 Dominican University


The beautiful ivy-covered buildings of Dominican University create a welcoming academic atmosphere. When you study English at ELS Chicago, you’ll have access to the Dominican University campus facilities, which include a large library, dining facilities, and a new fitness center that features a large indoor running track.

Planning to transfer to an American college or university after your studies? Upon successful completion of ELS Intensive English level 112, you will fulfill the English language entry requirement for conditional admission to Dominican University, as well as additional nearby partner colleges and universities.

Explore Dominican University
An exterior view of ELS Chicago's host institution, Dominican University in Chicago, Illinois.

Why you should Choose
ELS Chicago for Your English
Learning Experience

  • Learn English in Chicago at ELS's campus in the safe suburban city of River Forest Illinois.
  • Get the full American student experience as you connect with Dominican University students around campus, and while you use the university facilities.
  • Enjoy easy access to downtown Chicago, the third largest city in the US Midwest, where you can enjoy big city buzz and activities.
  • Choose the right program to meet your goals and interests, whether you’re looking for intensive English study, or a program that supports more free time to explore and experience the US, we have something to meet your needs.
  • Study with our customized engaging curriculum and reputable high quality English training – ELS’s Intensive English level 109 or 112 meet the English language entry requirement for more than 600 colleges and universities throughout the USA!

Unique opportunities at
Dominican University


University Scholarships for ELS Students

Planning to study at Dominican University after you complete your ELS studies? Take advantage of scholarships to help with your tuition fees and other costs.


Volunteer Experience

Dominican University offers a variety of volunteer opportunities for students on campus and ELS students are welcome to join in!


Concurrent Enrollment

Students who meet Dominican University entry requirements and have achieved ELS level 110 can take concurrent studies at Dominican while still an ELS student.


American Conversation Partnerships

ELS students can connect with current Dominican University students to practice their English conversation.

Explore the ELS Chicago Campus


Kathleen Hylen
ELS Chicago Center Director

Kathleen is passionate about students' English and higher education learning journeys in the USA and is here to support your English acquisition and learning transformation at ELS Chicago. Kathleen is going on 13 years with ELS Language Centers but only recently moved to Chicago in 2023. She has a Master’s in International Education Management from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies and loves languages.


Important Campus Info


  • 16
    Years Old
  • 12-15
  • 18

ELS Chicago | Dominican University Campus Facilities

  • baseball-field
  • basketball-court
  • cafeteria
  • computer-lab
  • paid-parking-nearby
  • fitness-center
  • library
  • wi-fi
Basketball Court
Fitness Center

Things to do in Chicago

Explore Chicago's top attractions to make your English study experience unforgettable. 
Millennium park in Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers.

Millennium Park

Located in the heart of Chicago, Millenium Park features concerts, exhibitions, tours, and family activities, and the popular “Cloud Gate” sculpture, otherwise known as “The Bean”.

Willis Tower Skydeck in Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers.

Willis Tower Sky Deck

Enjoy amazing vistas of Chicago and beyond from this super-tall skyscraper. The Sky Deck offers views from 1,453 feet up, and the truly brave can go out on the “Ledge,” a glass floored cube where you can view Chicago below your feet.

The Chicago Theatre in downtown Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers.

Chicago Theatre

With architecture inspired by the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, and the palace at Versailles, the Chicago theatre is an amazing sight to take in, and a place to enjoy music, comedy and more.

The Art Institute of Chicago, in Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers.

The Art Institute of Chicago

One of the world’s largest and oldest museums, the Art Institute of Chicago houses nearly 300,000 art works in its permanent collection, and has many more transit through in special exhibitions throughout the year.

The Navy Pier in Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers.

The Navy Pier

This scenic locale is home to shops, restaurants, a Ferris wheel, carousel, theatre, gardens and so much more. You’ll always find something happening at Navy Pier.

Wrigley Field Baseball Stadium, home of the Chicago Cubs baseball team in Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers.

Wrigley Field Baseball

Sports fans will want to catch a Chicago Cubs game at Wrigley Field, or even go for a ballpark tour to learn more about the second oldest MLB park in the US.

The Chicago Riverwalk in downtown Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers near ELS Language Centers.

Chicago Riverwalk

Take a stroll along the banks of the Chicago River that cuts through the center of the city. The Riverwalk is lined with restaurants and museums, and features a variety of events.

Lincoln Park in Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers near ELS Language Centers.

Lincoln Park

Home to a Zoo, a Nature Museum and the Chicago History Museum, this stunning 6-mile stretch of park offers greenspace, stunning beaches along the shores of lake Michigan, bike trails, and more.

A man playing blues music, a historically popular genre in Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers.

Chicago-style Blues

Chicago unique style of Blues music emerged in the 1940s and became an international influence by the 50s and 60s. Hear it live at the Chicago Blues Festival in June, or at popular local blues clubs, Buddy Guy’s Legends, House of Blues, and more!

The Shedd Aquarium in Chicago, Illinois, USA near ELS Language Centers.

Shedd Aquarium

Discover polar bears, stingrays, sea stars and more at the Shedd Aquarium which offers exhibits of aquatic life from all over the world.

ELS Chicago
Homestay Accommodation

Our homestays are located in historic Chicago neighborhoods within 30 minutes from the ELS center (the maximum is 45 minutes). Located on the outskirts of Chicago, homestays provide a safe, quiet place to live and experience American life and culture. Our homestays are connected by an extensive public transportation network of buses, trains, and two subway lines to provide easy access to the campus and the city.

Housing availability and confirmations are contingent on university and/or provider approval and are subject to change.

  • price
    Cost per week
  • single
  • Meals
    Meals per week
  • age
    Minimum Age

ELS Chicago
Student Residence

ELS’s Chicago Student Residence is an apartment-style accommodation offering double occupancy rooms, in a variety of apartments. The residence is close to shops, a movie theater, bookstore, and a variety of restaurants.

Housing availability and confirmations are contingent on university and/or provider approval and are subject to change.

Interior view of the ELS Chicago Student Residence in Chicago, Illinois, USA.
  • price
    Cost per week
  • double
  • age
    Minimum Age
  • shared-kitchen
    Meals not included
    However, all units have kitchen amenities to keep and prepare food.
  • off-campus
    Off Campus
    Get to the ELS campus in 30 minutes by walking or 15 minutes by public transport.

Discover ELS English Programs in Chicago


View the current ELS Chicago Academic Catalog and our Institutional Disclosures.

Intensive English

Our most complete English learning experience, designed to develop your language proficiency to support success in English-speaking higher education, business, or in any activity where you need to speak English well. Choose this program if you plan to attend one of the 600+ colleges that recognize ELS level 109 or 112 for language entry. 

Semi-Intensive English

Make English language development a priority while still leaving plenty of time to discover local culture and activities. Enjoy four daily English lessons designed to quickly improve your English communication skills. Outside the classroom, connect with locals and discover the attractions in your USA study city. 

American Explorer

The American Explorer Program offers a casual English learning experience while providing plenty of free time for local discovery and American cultural immersion. Designed for the curious explorer, this relaxed study program will help you improve your English to enrich a short-term study adventure. 

English for Executives

English for Executives is built to cater to the unique needs of business executives and professionals. Combine group classes designed to build comprehensive English skills with private lessons tailored to your specific learning needs and business communication goals.  Available for individuals or for teams. 

Super Intensive English

A fully customizable, one-on-one course designed for executives and professionals to quickly gain proficiency in business English. Choose 15, 20 or 30 lessons per week, and schedule this flexible program at a time that fits around your professional and personal commitments. 

Where to Find ELS Chicago

ELS Chicago is located on the Campus of Dominican University:

  • Lewis Hall, 7900 West Division St,
    River Forest,
    Illinois, United States
  • (773) 277-3799