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Summer Certificate Program (SCP) in English Proficiency

Pratt Institute’s Summer Certificate Program (SCP) is designed to combine academic work with a rich, fun environment that expands students’ skills and knowledge of art and design. The SCP helps incoming graduate and undergraduate students prepare for life in New York City as well as academic work in a North American art and design college. The eight-week session combines intensive training in language and academic skills with experiential learning, including visits to many of New York’s cultural attractions. SCP students will adapt to the challenges of student life at Pratt while sharpening their language and academic skills through research, writing, presentations, and creative projects under the guidance of a studio mentor.

SCP Admission

The Intensive English Program’s summer sessions are open to current and prospective Pratt students, to other international students seeking admission to colleges and universities, and to individuals interested in creative and personalized English as a second language instruction. The program offers students an ideal opportunity to improve their English language skills before the start of the Fall semester each year. Students’ English proficiency levels (as determined by the IEP faculty) may determine in which and in how many Institute courses they will enroll. Summer courses can help students become eligible to carry additional credit-bearing courses, or to become exempt from the Intensive English Program requirement altogether. Students who enroll in the SCP program are not required to take the English Placement Exam during orientation.

Please note: if you have been accepted for the Fall semester and would like to get a head start on your English you must apply for the SCP I-20 at the same time as applying for your Fall I-20. We strongly recommend that all students who received TOEFL scores below 600 PBT/250 CBT/100 iBT enroll in the Summer Certificate Program.

The classes run for eight weeks and meet for six hours per day, Monday through Thursday. This is the ideal environment for new students who need to raise their proficiency levels before beginning studio and lecture courses at Pratt. Students work on all language skill areas—reading, writing, speaking, and listening—and participate in several field trips to some of New York’s most interesting cultural attractions.

The Courses


SCP students will read a wide variety of texts, including works of theory and literature, as well as newspaper, magazine, and scholarly articles. Students will practice, prepare, and deliver several formal presentations on subjects relating to their reading and to their work as artists and designers. They will also interact with a variety of native speakers, including specialists in various art and design fields. These interactions will range from informal one-on-one studio consultations to more formal studio critiques.


SCP students will practice academic skills such as note-taking and classroom discussion in order to develop their ability to comprehend academic courses. They will also write several essays over the eight weeks, and learn to use various academic conventions, including argumentative, expository, and research writing. They will learn to develop and defend clear arguments and use formal citations while also gaining mastery over more fundamental skills such as correct paragraphing, grammar, and usage.


The SCP studio experience aims to give students a taste of the atmosphere of studio classes in North America, so that when they begin their graduate or undergraduate degree they are prepared for the cultural and linguistic demands of studio learning. Pratt’s SCP program features projects and lessons led by graduate students, or “studio mentors” from Pratt’s architecture, design and fine arts programs. The projects that students create under the mentors’ guidance help them develop their language and academic skills as they simultaneously improve their English. Once students complete a project, they will participate in oral critiques of one another’s work under the guidance of their studio mentor and will present their best projects in a gallery show at the end of the session.

Field trips during the Summer session help students learn more about life in the United States and navigate the wonders of New York City. Destinations may include museums such as The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, The Museum of Modern Art, the Guggenheim, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art; tours of neighborhoods such as Brooklyn Heights, the Lower East Side, and Washington Heights; and visits to other attractions such as the High Line, the Tenement Museum, and the Louis Armstrong House Museum.