two smiling students in classroom

Resources for Supporting Multilingual Learners

This website, maintained by the Minnesota English Language Program, provides faculty, instructors, and staff at the University of Minnesota with strategies to serve multilingual learners more effectively—in the classroom, in advising sessions, and through other exchanges. Each resource here includes research-based tips on key topics, and incorporates student, staff, and faculty perspectives.  

We would also love to hear from you about about strategies that you use that have proven effective in supporting multilingual students.  Please take a moment and share your success stories with us

Why "Multilingual Learner"?

Throughout this website, we primarily use the term "multilingual learner" to describe students for whom English is not a first or primary language. Other terms are commonly used at the University of Minnesota, such as EFL (English as a Foreign Language), ELL (English Language Learners), ESL (English as a Second Language), NNS (non-native speaker); however, we prefer this one because it promotes an equality of languages and doesn't focus on a language deficiency. 

The Latest Research

In the spring of 2016, we surveyed over 1,500 faculty and staff at the U of M who work with non-native speakers of English. This report, Supporting Non-Native English Speakers at the University of Minnesota, includes highlights from our findings about the benefits, challenges, and needs of supporting multilingual learners.

How We Can Help

If you have any additional comments or questions, or would like to set up a consultation or workshop for your department, contact Bethany Peters, the ESL Faculty & Staff Liaison, at