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What is the difference between EFL and ELL?

In the field of English language instruction, various abbreviations often get mixed up, leading to confusion. A typical mix-up occurs between the terms EFL and ELL. Simply put, EFL stands for English as a Foreign Language, and ELL signifies English Language Learner. EFL pertains to the course or class, while ELL denotes the English student.

What exactly does "EFL" mean?

EFL, or "English as a Foreign Language," denotes programs specifically constructed for ELL students. Many educational institutions offer EFL classes designed for English learners, utilizing EFL-centric curricula and programs. The term EFL broadly encapsulates the techniques and resources employed in teaching English to learners.

What does "ELL" stand for?

ELL, an acronym for "English Language Learner," represents students actively learning English. The term "ELL" applies to students who are native speakers of other languages and are now acquiring English as a foreign language.

The term might also refer to a student facing difficulties in learning English as a foreign language, albeit this usage is not as prevalent. Essentially, ELL describes the student and their ongoing journey in mastering the English language. These students may also be referred to as ELs (English Learners).


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