University of California, San Diego Language Pathway Program

Language Pathway
Times Top 100
Delivery Method:
Multi Term, Single Term

About the Program

Founded in 1960, the University of California, San Diego has grown to be one of the top 15 research universities in the world, celebrated for its transformative faculty that holds Nobel Prizes, Pulitzer Prizes, and MacArthur Fellowships. Overlooking the Pacific Ocean from La Jolla, California, the university’s relaxed atmosphere helps create a positive environment for learning and innovation. The sun-kissed backdrop that follows you everywhere you go also helps.

Study and live in a city with 266 days of sunshine every year

Hang out with your new lifelong friends on La Jolla’s beaches

Learn American idioms and slang, culture and conversation

Work on skills with your conversation partner to outside the classroom

Program Advisor

Student Counselor SAFFY
Your Student Counselor is your study abroad ambassador and supporter. They join your application journey when you’ve confirmed you’re interested in studying abroad. At this point, they guide you through each stage of the application, notify you of the documents you need, let you know when your admission results are in, and walk you through the next steps, including class enrollment and organizing pre-arrival tests.
Schedule a Consultation

At a Glance

Language of Instruction:
Language Prerequisite Level:
Academic Level:
Academic Strengths:
Biological & Physical Sciences, Business, Economics & Finance, Computer Science, Music, Film & Performing Arts
Off-campus apartment
Visa Required:

Stay Healthy & Safe While You Study Abroad


Former SAF Scholar

Living in a homestay gave me great opportunites to immerse in the culture. 

University of California, San Diego SAF Alumni


About the University

University of California, San Diego

Initially the university’s marine institute, UC San Diego has grown into a world leader in its own right. In exemplary research and transformative teaching—by faculty that hold Nobel Prizes, National Medals of Science, Fields Medals, Pulitzer Prizes, MacArthur Fellowships—UCSD stands out as one of the best universities on the planet. 

Overlooking the Pacific Ocean from La Jolla, California, UC San Diego has a surprisingly relaxed vibe considering the elevated academic drive in its classrooms, lecture halls, labs, and study groups. The 263 sunny days per year, long sandy beaches, and adventure-filled mountains, though, foster the perfect conditions for an active, balanced lifestyle.

Learn more at University of California, San Diego's official website


University of California, San Diego's Academic Approach

In the Communication & Culture English program at UCSD, you are assigned a conversation partner as a supplement to your course studies. These partners are UCSD students or employees who seek to help international students with English conversation skills and build your language and culture skills by practicing outside of the classroom.

C&C English program also allows access to UCSD Extension’s resources, including highly experienced international student services staff, a state-of-the-art language lab, academic advising and many other facility/resources and activities throughout the campus.



For 20 hours a week over a nine-week term, you work exclusively on your English fluency, learning about American culture and communication in a robust language program by the Pacific Ocean. During your first week, you work through registration, orientation, and a proficiency test to place you in the best classes for your ability and aspirations. Depending on your level, you can take elective courses that take you beyond grammar and deeper into culture and communication.

Elective courses

  • Listening through TV and Music
  • American Music
  • American Film
  • TOEFL/TOEIC Preparation
  • Idioms and Slang
  • Everyday English
  • American Culture
  • American Short Story
  • Vocabulary Development
  • Conversation
  • Reading and Writing
  • Current Events 
  • Oral Presentations

Get To Know Our Application Process

From academics to visa requirements, our structured process helps you choose the right program and university for your goals. Complete a strong application, and prepare for success abroad.

Personalize Your Study Abroad Plan With Your SAF Counselor

Each student has unique academic goals for a study abroad experience. As you think about studying abroad, your SAF Counselor will help you plan for success and support you every step of the way.

Application Requirements

When applying to study abroad, you must meet the entry requirements set by the host university—and SAF is here to set you up for success.

The requirements outlined in this section include the language proficiency scores you may need to demonstrate your language skills, a guide to the GPA range and other academic prerequisites required by your host university, and a list of documentation and other application materials you will need to finalize your application. You may need to supply additional information throughout the process, and you will be alerted through your emails and SAF Student Portal if this is the case for you.
  • Language Proficiency
  • Academics & GPA
  • Application Documents & Materials

Language Test Score Requirements

TOEFL iBT: 68-74 
IELTS: 6.0

Learn More About Language Requirements

Program Dates

When studying abroad, you will want to consider the time of year and how long you are away. Most programs follow the host university's academic calendar.

The dates shown below are general estimates, and as you get closer to the start of the term, you will get more detailed information from SAF. If you have any questions, your Student Counsellor and Program Specialist are always here to support you and point you to the correct information.

Spring 2024 Language Pathway + Summer 2024 Language Pathway+ Fall 2024 Concurrent

Program dates:
Late March - Mid December
Application Deadline:
Fees Starting From:

Fall 2024 Language Pathway + Winter 2025 Concurrent

Program dates:
Early October - Late February
Application Deadline:
Fees Starting From:

Fall 2024 Language Standalone + Winter 2025 Concurrent + Spring 2025 Academic

Program dates:
Early October - Mid June
Application Deadline:
Fees Starting From:

Housing Information


Off-Campus Apartment

As a UCSD scholar, you have a shared accommodation in an off-campus apartment. Some apartments may include a fitness center and swimming pool.

*Housing is subject to availability. For specific questions regarding housing please contact SAF.

About San Diego

Why San Diego

Home to one of the planet's most transformative universities and most impressive zoos, San Diego, on California's Pacific coast, has a surprisingly relaxed vibe. Its near-constant sun, long sandy beaches, and adventure-filled mountains create the perfect conditions for an active, balanced lifestyle. Its diverse population and strong East Asian communities add to the SoCal welcome as do downtime excursions to Stuart Art Collections, Disneyland, and Universal Studios.

Learn more about San Diego

Student Health & Safety

We champion health, safety, and security. As part of IES Abroad, the largest study abroad organization in the United States, we have set the standard for health and safety in study abroad for decades. We plan for the ‘what if’, so you can get on with the experience of a lifetime.
International Health Insurance

International health insurance included in the cost of your program

24/7 Emergency Phone Support

Total coverage to support you while traveling and in your new city

Location-Specific Information

Health and safety information prepared based on your destination

Health In Your Language

Highly trained multilingual staff to connect you to healthcare providers

Secure Housing

Quality, safe, secure housing within close proximity to your classes

Dedicated Expertise

Protection by a Dean of Students Office advocating for your interests


On Arrival

Your SAF pre-departure process will arm you with all the information you need for a smooth arrival to your new campus, city, and country.

To Housing

Your SAF program will include a safe transfer from your arrival airport to your new study abroad housing. We'll even provide you with top tips to make the most of your new city!

Home Sweet Home

Your SAF Program Specialist will coordinate with you to ensure you have arrived safely and settled into your new secure housing.

Keeping You Safe

As you settle in, you will learn about the SAF emergency alert system, our 24/7 phone support, and any safety concerns relevant to you.

Get Social

Your new university and SAF will arrange social and cultural events so that you can meet other study abroad and local students. Make the most of your adventure!

Advising and Support

The process of studying abroad could quickly feel overwhelming, but we have been doing this for decades and do everything we can to support you through it. 

Many SAF staff are alumni and have walked this path. They have real-life experience to draw on as they advise and support you through every step of our comprehensive services. They’re in your corner, taking care of all the details and explaining what you need to do next.

Take the first step in your study abroad journey by scheduling a consultation with your closest Student Counselor. You can discuss your for-credit academic courses and language programs and explore internships, research programs, and study tours. When you know what you want to do, we guide you through the pre-program steps, help you arrange your visa and transport, and finalize your accommodation or digital experience.

Get To Know Our Application Process

From academics to visa requirements, our structured process helps you choose the right program and university for your goals. Complete a strong application, and prepare for success abroad.

Personalize Your Study Abroad Plan With Your SAF Counselor

Each student has unique academic goals for a study abroad experience. As you think about studying abroad, your SAF Counselor will help you plan for success and support you every step of the way.

Commonly Asked Questions About Studying Abroad

Student Blogs

Why Travel With SAF?

Studying abroad is an unforgettable experience, one that stays with you in your career, your contacts, your future. It can define you. At any of our prestigious university partners, you can build personalized for-credit programs that can last up to a whole year.

Girl Standing in Arch