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Study Abroad and Domestic Study Away

ISEP at Masaryk University: Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Program



The Czech Republic’s rich and varied history characterized by repression, resilience and a long struggle for independence makes this “small country in the heart of Europe” a fascinating place to experience. Formerly known as “Czechoslovakia,” this country was split into the two sovereign nations of the Czech Republic and Slovakia in 1993, following the peaceful “Velvet Revolution” in 1989. 

The country now borders Poland to the northeast, Germany to the west and northwest, Austria to the south and Slovakia to the east. Visit the nearby cathedrals, castles, breweries, caves and abyss in and around Brno, or travel just a few hours to Prague, Bratislava, Vienna, Budapest or Krakow.

Get off the beaten path and explore Brno, where the country’s second largest and fastest growing university, Masaryk University, is located. TESOL programs are also available in the Spring semester.

This program is best for a student that is independent.  A student must be comfortable with advocating for themselves on campus and comfortable with the local language to thrive in this location. Please be aware that there may not be the same access to internet or amenities to which you may be accustomed.  Student services and especially class registration may not be at all similar to what is done at the College and may be difficult for some students to adjust.

Learn more about the TESOL program here

Program Type

Exchange or Direct-Enroll


Brno, Czech Republic

Languages of Instruction

Czech, English, French, German

Program Dates

Fall 2018: September to December

Spring 2019: February to May

All dates are tentative and may change.  ISEP will alert all accepted students of final dates.


To be eligible to participate in this program, students must meet the following requirements:

  • Good academic and judicial standing during time of application AND time of participation in program
  • Undergraduates must have completed at least two semesters of study at Lake Forest College AND have junior status or higher before participation. 
  • At least 20 years of age by the program’s departure date. 
  • Be able to stay at the host program for the duration of the semester, including through the exam and travel periods
  • Minimum GPA of 2.75.  


Students applying to ISEP must apply for an Exchange option (in any country) as a first choice but may apply to a Direct option as a back-up.  Direct options may have an additional cost.

Chance of placement on ISEP Direct is Excellent.


The historical capital of Moravia, Brno combines a rich cultural legacy with the vibrancy of a university city that is home to six higher educational institutions (of which Masaryk University is the largest) and over 75,000 students. Thanks to its strategic location at the heart of Central Europe, major regional centers such as Prague, Bratislava, Vienna, Budapest, and Krakow, are within easy reach by train and bus. In the immediate vicinity of Brno, the Moravian highlands to the north and west offer outstanding opportunities for hiking, bicycling and skiing. Southeast of Brno is the Czech Republic’s main wine-producing region, with its many ancient cellars, now linked by a new network of ecology-friendly bicycle trails. 


Get off the beaten path and explore Brno, where the country’s second largest and fastest growing university, Masaryk University, is located. Take courses in English either on ISEP-Exchange or in the ISEP-Direct Central European Students Program. TESOL programs are also available in the Spring semester.

Masaryk University offers courses instructed in Czech, English, and French. A list of these courses can be found on the Web site of the Office for International Studies (see link above).


ISEP Direct: Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Program (currently Spring only)
The purpose of the program is to bring together Czech and English-speaking students in order to foster understanding and broaden both groups’ social, academic and professional experience - all of which are a vital part of succeeding in teaching English as a foreign language. The program integrates the fundamentals of language learning theory and hands-on teaching practice. A unique aspect of this selective program is that native English speakers and non-native speakers study and practice together. In addition to the TESOL-related courses, students can choose from courses on applied linguistics, the Czech language, and a number of courses relating to the Czech cultural heritage.

Students who successfully complete the course of study earn the internationally recognized Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults (CELTA) issued by University of Cambridge ESOL. 

Language of instruction is English.



Students do not need any prior Czech in order to study at Masaryk University. 
An intensive mini-crash course in survival Czech forms part of the orientation-week program for international students. During the semester, weekly Czech lessons for international students are taught by members of the Department of Czech for Foreigners. 

Experiential Opportunities

The practical training component of the CELTA program. Teaching practice (TP) includes the following: students’ own classroom practice, observations of experienced teachers, peer observations, feedback discussions and assisted lesson planning. The aim of teaching practice is to help students acquire basic teaching skills and establish a solid basis for further professional development. Classes taught consist of two groups of six students.

Student Life

Founded in 1919, Masaryk University is the second largest higher educational institution in the Czech Republic. University facilities include several new university and faculty libraries, a wide range of sports facilities (gymnasiums, sports fields, rowing center, indoor and outdoor tennis courts), a botanical garden, and several student clubs at individual faculties. Total enrollment: over 37,000 students. Thanks to a loan from the European Investment Bank, the university is now engaged in building a new campus and refurbishing existing buildings; when completed, all the university’s faculties, research centers, and residences will be equipped with the most up-to-date facilities. 



The first day of Orientation week (Monday), students will be given a packet with an orientation week program. The International Student Club arranges a Buddy Program, including having a Czech student meet international students upon their arrival in Brno.

In addition to arrangements for registering for courses and obtaining all the various official documents, a typical orientation week includes tours of the university and its facilities, lectures on Czech culture and Czech society and on the Czech university system, an intensive course in Czech (ranging from “survival” Czech for complete beginners to various degrees of advanced courses for those who already have knowledge of the language), a welcoming party with Masaryk University teachers and students, a tour of Brno, visits to Brno museums, and a day-long excursion in the environs of the city (Maravian Carst). 
See http://czs.muni.cz/en/in/students/studies/xprogram-isep for more details. More information is available at http://czs.muni.cz/en/in/students/studies/xprogram-isep. The web page of the International Student Club: http://isc.muni.cz


The International Student Club on campus promotes and sponsors activities to help exchange students transition into life at Masaryk. A list of their activities can be found under the “Featured Programs” link.

Orientation benefits are also included in your program. This includes arrangements for registering for courses and obtaining documents you will need. A typical orientation week also includes tours of the university and its facilities, talks on Czech culture and Czech society and the Czech university system, a mini-“crash course” in Czech, meeting with Masaryk University teachers and students, a tour of Brno, and a day-long excursion into the city.

Masaryk also offers day-long excursions into the surrounding area, which is available for all ISEP students; however, the costs are not included in the program fee for ISEP Exchange and Direct students. In the past, students participating in ISEP have traveled to places like Vienna, Budapest, Krakow, the Cerna Hora brewery and the National Park, Moravian Karst.

Housing and Meals

ISEP Direct fees include tuition, housing, and meals. International students live in a modern university residence that offers double rooms, each with a bathroom and kitchenette. A meal stipend is provided; international students can benefit from very inexpensive meals in the university cafes and cooking facilities in their dorms.

Financial Information

Here is an estimated budget for the Fall 2018/Spring 2019 program:

Budget Item


Lake Forest College Tuition


Program fee (estimated)


Program Deposit (credit)


Total Expected Billed by Lake Forest College


ISEP Deposit due on Stage 2 Application


College Deposit due on Acceptance (non-refundable)


Additional Meals


Estimated Airfare


Estimated Personal Expenses (passport, visas, immunizations, textbooks, supplies, personal expenses, additional travel etc.)


Total Out-of-Pocket Expenses






Tuition rates and program fees are subject to change each year, but this information was up-to-date as of February 2018. We will notify applicants, and update this page if the program fee or other estimates change.

Keep in mind that you may spend more or less in certain areas like personal expenses, travel, meals, or airfare, depending on exchange rates and your own spending habits. Classroom or lab fees are not included in this estimate and will depend on your course registration choices.  

Don’t forget to apply for scholarships! A great listing can be found here.  

Do check your student account on My.Lakeforest for your aid awards, as much of this, will go with you. If you want to compare your program to the cost of being on campus, those numbers can be found here: https://www.lakeforest.edu/admissions/tuition/fees.php