Learn to speak English (ESOL) for adult learners

Enrolment for ESOL classes

Enrolments for English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) courses are now closed. However, if you wish to be contacted about courses starting in September, please complete the form in the link below.

If you have recently arrived in the UK from Ukraine, please go to our English for Ukrainians page to please to find out more information about the course.

Complete an expression of interest form

Who are our classes for?

ESOL classes at Surrey Adult Learning are for adults aged 19 or over who currently live in England and have been resident in the European Economic Area (EEA) for at least three years prior to starting their course.

You will be exempt from the three-year residency requirement if you have:

  • Refugee status
  • Discretionary leave to enter or remain
  • Exceptional leave to enter or remain
  • Indefinite leave to enter or remain
  • Humanitarian protection
  • Leave outside the rules
  • Afghan Locally Engaged Staff under the intimidation policy
  • Section 67 of the Immigration Act 2016 leave
  • Calais leave to remain
  • Or if you are the husband, wife, civil partner or child of an individual with one of the above


These courses will be free if you:

  • are in receipt of Job Seeker's Allowance (JSA);
  • are in receipt of Employment and Support Allowance (ESA);
  • are in receipt of Universal Credit and earn less than £338 a month;
  • receive a state benefit not listed above and earn less than £338 a month and want to get a job or progress to a better job; or you
  • are employed but earn less than £17,374.50 per year.

Depending upon your circumstances, we will need to see ID and proof of your immigration status, receipt of benefits and income when you enrol.

If you are not eligible for a free course under the above criteria, you will need to pay a fee.

Our courses

We offer courses from Pre-Entry to Level 1.

  • Pre-Entry: You will learn basic vocabulary to enable you to read words and phrases you see in everyday life. You will learn to write the English alphabet and write and spell some common words. You will learn to introduce yourself and respond to basic questions. From the Pre-entry level you will move on to Entry 1.
  • Entry 1: You will learn to read a variety of short texts and recognise some common words. You will learn to write short sentences in English, fill in forms and spell some common words. You will start to become more confident in speaking. At the end of each unit in Entry 1, you will sit a short exam and if successful, you will progress to Entry 2.
  • Entry 2: You will learn to read longer texts and be able to identify the purpose of various texts. You will start to use past and future tenses and will learn to write short letters and emails. You will be able to engage in short forms of social communication. From Entry 2, and upon completion of the unit exams, you will progress to Entry 3
  • Entry 3: You will become familiar with past and present perfect tenses and be able to communicate more effectively. You will develop more advanced writing skills enabling you to use more formal vocabulary to write longer letters and emails. From Entry 3, and upon completion of the unit exams, you will progress to L1.
  • Level 1 (L1): You will be able to communicate confidently, taking part in discussion and expressing your opinions and point of view. You will have a wider vocabulary and be able to spell a range of words accurately. You will be able to read and understand complex texts and comment on what you have read. From L1 and upon successful completion of the L1 exams, you can move on to a Functional Skills English course and then to GCSE.


At the end of each term you will take City and Guilds ESOL Skills for Life exams in reading, writing, and speaking and listening. There are no exams for pre-entry level.


You will be required to attend a minimum of 90% of your classes. Should your attendance fall below this, your place on the course, and future progression, may be at risk.

Additional information

We welcome learners with additional needs and disabilities. When you enrol please let us know if you would like to discuss your extra support needs with a member of the Supported Learning Team who will then contact you as soon as possible. If you are enrolling within ten days of the course start date, we may not be able to contact you before your first class. Surrey Adult Learning values and supports equality and diversity by promoting fairness and respect at all times.