School of ESL, International Ed, and Transitional Studies


ESL is the largest department at CCSF with over 700 course offerings and more than 300 faculty members. The department includes both credit and noncredit programs.

The Credit ESL program requires a fee and is designed for students with academic goals who wish to complete a two-year degree or vocational certificate at City College or to transfer to a four-year college or university. The Noncredit ESL program is free of charge and is designed to help immigrant students develop their general ability to listen, speak, read and write English.


Our International Student Programs (ISP) encompass the Academic and Intensive English Programs. There are currently over 1200 students from 90 countries studying at our various campuses. Their presence complements a broad mosaic of multi-ethnic students from San Francisco. The ISP requires tuition and offers an intensive academic English program for international students who want to prepare for college or university classes and obtain an F-1 student visa.


We have been a leader in Study Abroad education since 1985. Thousands of CCSF students, faculty and staff, students from other colleges and universities, and citizens of the Bay Area and beyond have participated in our programs. We offer semester and short-term programs (summer and winter) in a variety of locations around the world, and we are a resource for information on options for study, work, and volunteering abroad.


The Transitional Studies Department offers instruction in the CCSF High School Diploma Program, General Education Development (GED), Adult Basic Education, and Vocational Foundation Skills.

The curriculum consists of courses in reading, writing, mathematics, and specific subjects at basic, intermediate, and advanced levels. Instructional methodology includes both individualized and traditional classroom instruction.