The English Communication Program (ECP) is a non-credit program that gives you the opportunity to develop your communication skills in English (especially verbal/spoken), gain insight into Canadian culture and life at U of T, and share cultural experiences.


This program is open to all international and exchange students at U of T.


How it works Program timeline
Schedule 2018 ECP Winter Session (starting late January)
Class Descriptions Classes available this winter
Attendance & Refund Attendance & refund policy for the English Communication Program
English tips Practical guide to English in Canada

How it works

Classes are facilitated by volunteers who have teaching, cross-cultural, and international experience.

There are three ECP sessions throughout the year:  

  • Fall (September to November/December)
  • Winter (January to March) 
  • Summer (May to July)

Most series of classes (but not all) are ten weeks long and students meet once each week for 2 hours. Please take note of the start date, time and duration of the class series you are interested in (some classes start in a different week or end at different times due to availability of instructors).

The fee for each regular ECP class series is $15 (for registrants who already pay U of T student incidental fees).

2018 ECP Winter Session

Most series of classes for the Winter 2018 Program will begin in late January (please check individual class descriptions in case there are different start dates). 

Additional class offerings and special opportunities may be added if available and may start later. Check below or with the ECP Office for updates.

Registration will begin by January 15, 2018.

Register online by clicking any of the series of classes below (please review the descriptions for information about each individual class series and timing of classes before registering).

Class Descriptions


General Conversation (GC1)

This class series allows for general conversation, which can include discussion of Canadian culture, the explanation and use of idioms (figures of speech) and some practical, everyday English. Students can (and should!) tell the instructor what they would like to learn, practise and discuss. Some classes may have occasional outings.

This series is on Tuesdays from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. starting January 23.

Register for General Conversation


English in the City (EC1 or EC2)

Meet in different neighbourhoods and city spots each week to walk, tour, talk and take photos. Practise English in real-life situations and chat about topics such as social issues, popular culture, entertainment, media, fashion, and cultural differences.  Enhance your communication skills, share cross-cultural experiences, gain unique insights into Canadian culture, and explore what's best about Toronto.  We will be doing some walking, so dress comfortably.  Expect to spend about $10.00 per class on city transportation, coffee or lunch. Suggestions are welcome! 

Pick one of the two series of classes (Wednesdays at 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. or Fridays at 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.).  Both series start the last week of January.

Register for English in the City


Practise Speaking English for Post-Doctoral Researchers (PD1)

This series of classes gives International Post-Doctoral Researchers practice talking about their research and other topics in English. The class will cover English grammar, pronunciation, vocabulary expansion and will provide opportunities to practise speaking. The goal is to help participants improve their English speaking and listening skills important for academic presentations, answering questions, interviews, and conversations with co-workers, supervisors, and new friends in Canada. This class is for learners who currently have high intermediate English proficiency.

This series is on Thursdays from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. starting February 8 (runs for nine weeks).

Register for Practise Speaking English for Post-Doctoral Researchers


Canadian Culture & History (CCH1)

This class series allows students to actively discuss and learn about Canadian culture and history. It is loosely based on The Royal Canadian Air Farce’s version of “Canada: A People’s History”, a comedy TV show with a hilarious take on prominent Canadian historical figures. Gain insight into Canadian life and Canada as we know it as we move from the past to the present.

This series is on Fridays from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. starting January 26.

Register for Canadian Culture & History


Let’s Talk – Conversation (LT1)

Enjoy a lively exchange of ideas on topics such as contemporary culture, entertainment, current and general issues, beliefs and values, globalization & interculturalism, social media, cross-cultural experiences and communication.  Throughout the class series, we'll share simple pronunciation and vocabulary building tips and highlight best discussion practices.  A participatory Facebook group site will help guide the class.  Want to try a local outing?  Have a topic you'd like to discuss?  Suggestions are welcome!
This series is on Mondays from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. starting January 22.

Register for Let’s Talk – Conversation


Attendance policy

Due to the high demand for our classes and out of respect for the many students who wish to take our classes but cannot get in, we have implemented the following attendance policy:

If you miss two classes without notifying your instructor or the ECP office you will be dropped from the class and a student from the waiting list will be admitted in your place.

Refund policy

No refunds will be given after the second scheduled class or due to class cancellation.

Please also note that refunds are only processed once per month.

English language tips

This page provides some basic information and vocabulary to help you navigate University and city interactions in English.