Departmental Language Programme 2020-21

Covid-19 Update

The majority of Departmental Language Programme (DLP) sessions in Semester 1 2020-21 are online using a combination of "live" online sessions (including 1-2-1 tutorials), self-study materials, pre-recorded teaching, and online feedback of your work.

Some face-to-face sessions will be available if Covid-19 restrictions allow. We are now planning for the 2020/21 academic year so that DLP will be available to you whatever the Covid-19 situation.

In collaboration with academic departments across the University, the ELTC provides free, subject-specific classes for students who would like to develop their academic English, communication skills and academic literacy.

Timetables for the classes in your department can be accessed hereDLP Timetable

If there is no timetable for your department yet, please come back to this page soon, as we are updating the timetables.

Frequently asked questions by staff and students about our Departmental Language Programme (DLP) are answered below.

What is DLP?

DLP is a programme of free, specially designed English courses related to specific subject areas. Classes are often included on your timetables and have been designed in cooperation with academics in your departments. They are department/module/assignment specific classes designed to improve your academic literacy.

How can DLP help me?

ELTC teachers and staff from your department work together to design a course related to your modules and assignments. You can also discuss what you need with your ELTC teacher. The teacher will try to make the lesson content fit with your module timetable so that you learn things that are useful for what you are studying at the time.

As part of the Departmental Language Programme we've also produced some interactive online academic literacy resources to help you succeed in your academic department. These can be accessed here:

Online Academic Literacy Resources

What exactly do we study?

It depends on what you and your department think you might need. Lessons often focus on paraphrasing and summarising, writing reports or essays, reading and understanding assignments, avoiding plagiarism and practising presentations. The teacher will use materials related to your module topics so that you become more familiar with the language and communication style of your field.

How do I register for DLP classes?

You can register online here: 

DLP Registration

You can use use this guide to DLP registration. If you have any problems with this, you can just go to the classes and give your name and email address to the teacher. This will help us to contact you if necessary, for example, if the class is cancelled if your teacher is ill.

Your DLP classes may have already been added to your iSheffield timetable by your academic department. If this is the case, you do not need to register.

Where and when are the classes?

The classes are held in your department and your timetable should give details of times and locations. You can also check on the ELTC website: 

DLP Timetables

Online sessions and materials can be found on your department or module Blackboard courses, or through the ELTC Blackboard organisation that will be available to all students at the start of the 2020/21 academic year. Your department or ELTC teacher will give you details of where to find the materials and links for your DLP sessions.

How will the classes work online?

DLP courses during the 2020/21 academic year are being planned to accommodateany COVID related restrictions. Some sessions will be delivered “live” with a teacher in an online classroom. Other sessions will be pre-recorded for you to access at any time. Self-study materials and materials to work on before and/or after classes will also be available for you to access out of the timetabled class time. Your teacher may also give feedback on your written or spoken work through the sharing of documents and 1-2-1 tutorials.

How long is the course?

It depends on what your department has requested. It can vary from one or two workshops to a weekly class throughout the year. Lessons usually take place during the semester, not during university holidays. However, it is possible that your department will arrange dissertation support at that time. 

What is the English level of the courses?

The classes are at upper intermediate level (IELTS 6 or above), but the exact level depends on the entry requirements for each department. Some departments provide classes at different levels. There might be separate groups for undergraduates, masters and PhD students. This does not mean, however, that if you have a good level of English, you will not benefit from attending the classes. As the classes are focusing on your modules, they are not just focusing on your English level but your literacy skills in your field.

Can I get credits for these classes?

No, there are no assessments or credits for these classes. They are designed to help you get better grades for your modules.

Do I have to attend these classes?

Some departments make the lessons compulsory. If your department tells you to attend, then you should do so. Remember that the purpose of the classes is to help you improve the English and academic literacy you need for different modules on your course. Live online sessions are still monitored for attendance whenever possible, and online materials are reviewed for student access levels.

What should I do if I have a complaint?

If you have any problems or complaints, speak to your tutor first. In most cases he or she will be able to help you. If you would like to complaint to the DLP Course Director, please don't hesitate to contact Lynne Newcombe - If it is not possible for the Director to resolve the complaint, procedures will apply.  Please visit the following link: If any formal complaints arise, they are logged in the ELTC complaints log. 

What should I do if I miss the class or have to leave early?

If you are ill and cannot go to class, you should email your ELTC teacher to let them know. This applies whether the class is online or face to face.

If you have to leave early or arrive late because of another course commitment or lab work, remember to explain to your teacher and leave or come in quietly so that you do not disturb your classmates.

If you have problems entering the online classroom, or connection issues, please try using a different internet browser (Firefox and Chrome work best), and only email your teacher if you are still unable to join the class.


For further information about the Departmental Language Programme you can contact:

DLP Academic Director:

Lynne Newcombe:

DLP Assistant Directors:

Evdokia Valiou:

Tim Radnor:

Pawel Matuszczyk:

Paula Villegas: