International Fellows Program
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The International Fellows Program at the US Army War College



The USAWC International Fellows Program proffers academic English writing and research courses and assistance to attending Fellows in accordance with the IF Program Objective to offer an opportunity for senior military officers to study, research, and write on subjects of significance to their security interests.

English writing and research assistance throughout the academic year will include:

  • Initial English proficiency level assessment and academic skills development as part of IF Orientation
  • Supplementary writing and research courses for attending Fellows in need of additional academic writing and research knowledge and skills development
  • Individual student instruction sessions with the IFP Writing Instructor for English writing and research assistance on specific academic writing projects throughout the academic year
  • Opportunity for individual assistance in writing at the nearby Dickinson College Writing Center


US Army War College International Fellow Academic Preparation Course (USAWC IF Prep Course)

MASL: B177001 Course Number: 1-250-IFAP

Course Description

This course instructs International Fellows who have been selected to attend the US Army War College in the English and writing skills required for successfully completing the academic requirements for the US Army War College resident program.

Attendees of this course must score a minimum of 75 on the English Comprehension Level test (ECL). Upon completion of the course, students must have accomplished a minimum score of 80 ECL to be eligible for the USAWC resident course. (Students who do not achieve an 80 on the ECL upon completion of the Prep Course will not be allowed to continue on to the USAWC Orientation or Resident courses.) The USAWC International Fellows Program will provide two ECL testing opportunities in connection to the 9 week course—one at the beginning upon arrival and then another at completion if necessary.

The first two modules of this course will focus on English grammar, covering both basic and advanced fundamentals of the language. Week three will include practice in participating in group discussion and presenting material as a group and individually. The objectives for this module will prepare students for interaction in their respective core course seminars at the USAWC. Preparation for integration into the USAWC resident course continues with study and practice in reading effectively and thinking critically, skills that are necessary to negotiate the volume of reading required to be successful at the USAWC. The Research and Documentation module follows with a focus on exposure to research opportunities and help in understanding the process of research to be incorporated into writing, including proper documentation. The course continues with two weeks of writing instruction focused on building a piece of writing from topic selection, through the writing process of developing an outline, to drafting an introduction. The next module will focus on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Students will become more familiar with the test itself, learn to manage the time restriction of the test, and practice the skills and exercises included within the test. The final week is a culmination of all prior study and practice. This concluding module will help students understand the value of peer review and become familiar with academic support resources available to them throughout their year of study at the USAWC. It is also an opportunity for them to combine all they have learned into a final research paper—meant to mimic the requirements and standards of USAWC core course papers that they will be assigned throughout the year. This final week also includes a one-on-one student teacher conference which provides an opportunity for individualized feedback and allows for specific recommendations designed to aid student efforts to successfully integrate into the USAWC and complete all required academic work.

Course Objectives

  1. Learn or relearn the fundamentals of English grammar and structure.
  2. Practice of all four English language skills (reading, speaking, listening, and writing) to include a better understanding of usage of all four skills.
  3. Identify and demonstrate standards of American academic work, specifically with regard to expectations at the USAWC.
  4. Improve understanding of American English idiomatic expressions to include academic and military specific vocabulary and terminology.
  5. Incorporate reading techniques and strategies to manage the volume of reading required for academic study.
  6. Read actively to contribute to class discussions and seminars in core courses and electives.
  7. Develop understanding of the writing process and build the knowledge and skills necessary to successfully complete USAWC writing requirements.
  8. Conduct research and understand the requirement for accurate and complete source citation.
  9. Understand plagiarism and recognize how to avoid it.
  10. Complete a graduate-level paper or essay consistent with the strategic focus of the USAWC.
  11. Practice and become comfortable with the TOEFL and the skills needed to complete the test successfully.

Course Structure and Schedule
Course Modules are divided into nine, one week modules.

Module 1: Introduction, Team building, and Grammar (ECL testing)

Module 2: Advanced Grammar and Sentence Structure Fundamentals

Module 3: Presentations and Group Discussion

Module 4: Reading and Comprehension

Module 5: Research, Documentation, and Plagiarism

Module 6: Writing Topics, Outlines, and Introductions

Module 7: Writing Structure, Building Essays/Drafting, and Essay Types

Module 8: TOEFL

Module 9: Writing Revision and the Final Project (ECL testing)

Course Outcome

At the conclusion of the course, students will:

    • Have a minimum ECL of 80
    • Be prepared to take the TOEFL
    • Have improved English speaking, reading, listening and writing ability
    • Better understand American academic writing, including documentation and what constitutes plagiarism
    • Have completed a college-level research paper on a strategic topic or issue
    • Be familiar with USAWC academic standards and faculty expectations

Report date for this course is no later than Sunday, April 14 of 2013. Individual classes for the course begin on Monday, April 22. An initial ECL test will be administered the week of April 15-19 with a second test provided if necessary. ECL testing will occur again in June prior to the start of IF Orientation for those students who have not yet achieved an 80 ECL. An 80 ECL must be achieved in order to be permitted into the IF Orientation course and on to the USAWC Resident course. Dependents are not permitted for the duration of the IF Academic Prep Course. Please direct questions to the Course Director, Jeremy Beussink at


These pages, links and information are provided to assist you in your integration and attendance at the USAWC. If you need information or would like to make a comment, please contact the International Fellows Office or via commercial telephone (717) 245-4830.

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