uoPAL - Practical Active Learning

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Is this course for me?

Are you looking to improve your English skills? Do you want to spend the summer meeting new friends from around the world? Do you want to live in Canada’s capital? Then uoPAL is for you! 

The uoPAL program will help you take the next step in your English learning journey. The program's highly-qualified instructors will help you improve your English language skills in the best possible environment, right in the bilingual National Capital Region. 

Our goal is to help you: 

  • Communicate effectively with both native and non-native English speakers
  • Notice and appreciate similarities and differences between cultures
  • Learn with classmates from around the world
  • Enjoy life in Canada

What does uoPAL mean? It stands for the University of Ottawa Practical Active Learning course. 

  • Practical: Develop language skills for authentic use 
  • Active: Engage fully in the learning process
  • Learning: Increase your ability to use language effectively

Course content

Through uoPAL, you’ll experience English in the real world and use  it to:

  • Learn about Canadians, other nationalities and their cultures
  • Effectively communicate with native speakers and classmates, using the right vocabulary and grammar
  • Complete everyday tasks
  • Discuss your ideas and experiences

Here are some of the tasks you’ll do:

  • Create, conduct and report on a survey on Canadian culture
  • Make a video comparing different countries’ cultures
  • Interview a uOttawa employee to understand university culture
  • Produce a play incorporating different language styles
  • Create a travel blog to share your Canadian experience
  • Complete our everyday communication challenge task with members of the community

Course placement

The uoPAL program has four levels:

  •         uoPAL100: Beginner
  •         uoPAL200: Low Intermediate
  •         uoPAL300 High Intermediate
  •         uoPAL400: Advanced

You’ll take a placement test to determine which level is best for you. Depending on the number of students who enrol, several levels might be offered within the same class.

Course dates/length


July 29 to August 23, 2019


4 weeks (approximately 22 hours per week)



The schedule for this program is the perfect balance of class work to improve language skills, day trips to discover the Canadian culture, and free time to enjoy the campus and the city. 







8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

Integrated Language and Task-based Skills

Integrated Language and Task-based Skills

Integrated Language and Task-based Skills

Day Trip

Integrated Language and Task-based Skills

11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.


1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Language Enrichment

Language Enrichment

Language Enrichment

Day Trip

Language Enrichment

Please note that the Civic holiday (Monday, August 5th 2019) is a statutory holiday and no activities will take place.


Tuition is $2420. It must be paid in full by July 23, 2019. It covers classes, photocopies and handouts, mandatory health insurance and socio-cultural outings.  Airport pick-up and send off can be arranged with groups of 10 or more at an additional cost. 

Fees are subject to change without notice. A non-refundable deposit of $325 is required for you to receive a letter of admission for visa purposes and take the program placement test.

How to enrol

Planning to join us? Super! Here’s what you need to do:

Step 1: Complete the online application form.  We will then contact you with more information. 

Step 2: Pay your full tuition or a $325 non-refundable deposit.  Learn more about paying for this course.

Step 3: Once we receive your payment, we will send you a letter of acceptance that you can use for your visa application. 

Step 4: Get your visa and book your trip to Ottawa! 

Step 5: Pay your full tuition fees by the deadline. 

We will follow up with you throughout this process to help when necessary!

Day Trips

Day Tips

Language practice doesn’t only happen in the classroom! An important, fun part of our program is the activities outside of class. The University of Ottawa campus is perfectly located for a fun-filled summer. Exciting cultural, outdoor, and social activities are right at our doorstep!

Outings planned for summer 2019 include:

Living in Ottawa, Canada's Capital

Ottawa is one of the safest and most beautiful capital cities in the world. A major centre for the visual and performing arts, it offers a wide variety of urban attractions, while maintaining the atmosphere and charm of a smaller centre, with easy access to spectacular parks and wilderness. Visitors can enjoy many of Canada’s best museums, theatres and music festivals, or bike along the city’s many trails and pathways.


Where can I live?

We’re here to help you find the best place to live while you’re studying with us. Whether you’re looking for the convenience of living on campus, the benefits of living with a homestay family or the independence of living in the city, we can help. Complete the application form in the “Register Now” section.  We will then contact you to help with the next steps.  

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