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Medical English as a Foreign Language (EFL) for Nurses

McGill’s Medical English as a Foreign Language (EFL) for Nurses is a two-week intensive program designed to help nursing students, nurses, and nurse educators improve their English language communication skills, which are needed to interact effectively with international patients, their families, and/or caregivers in a variety of healthcare situations.

The program consists of three modules that promote task-based, experiential and discovery learning opportunities.

A minimum of 12 students is required to run the program.

Type:   Intensive
Courses:   3
Schedule:   Full time
Time:   Weekday evenings, Saturdays
Delivery:  In-person*
Unit:   Global and Strategic Communication

info.conted [at]

* This program can also be offered virtually. Contact us for more information.




Message From the Academic Program Coordinator

We invite you to embark upon an adventure and enroll in McGill’s Medical English as a Foreign Language (EFL) for Nurses program! Medical EFL for Nurses is a top-quality, two-week intensive program intended for nursing students, nurses, and nurse educators who wish to improve their speaking skills and listening comprehension in English in a healthcare context.

Medical EFL for Nurses is unique in its design. We employ a task-based, experiential, and discovery learning approach as we help students deepen their language and professional knowledge in the nursing field. The first of the three components in the program focuses on language instruction specific to nurse-patient interactions. The second offers students the opportunity to meet nursing professionals and/or nurse educators in a seminar, workshop, or lecture format. The final component involves visits to different healthcare settings, which could be a very large hospital, or a more community-based, smaller facility.

Local cultural activities and day trips are an important part of the Medical EFL for Nurses program. Dedicated nursing students from McGill’s Ingram School of Nursing will act as monitors, providing students with guidance and support for the duration of their stay.

This experience will not only enrich your English language skills but will also offer you a glimpse into practices in the North American healthcare system. We look forward to welcoming you to McGill!

Yuan-Jin Hong, Ph.D.
Academic Program Coordinator

Key Features
  • English for Professional Purposes classes designed specifically for nursing professionals
  • Workshops and seminars with McGill faculty and practicing nurses
  • Healthcare facility visits
  • Cultural activities
  • Day trip to Ottawa, Canada’s capital

Career Spotlight

Unlock the World of Healthcare in English

The COVID-19 pandemic brought a sharp increase in the demand for healthcare practitioners at the national and international levels. According to Statistics Canada, the number of job vacancies in health occupations in Canada in the first quarter of 2023 was 95,200 – more than double the demand in the first quarter of 2020. In the nursing sector specifically, job vacancies in all Canadian provinces increased by 5,475 positions, or nearly one quarter (24.0%) to 28,335, compared to 2022.

This reality has presented a great opportunity for nurses to apply for and obtain a job in both the international and Canadian nursing environments.

A key component of a competitive healthcare professional profile is effective communication, as it represents the cornerstone of quality healthcare. The ability to interact with international patients, their families, and caregivers is an invaluable skill for nurses. The McGill Medical English as a Foreign Language for Nurses program is designed to empower nursing students, nurses, and nurse educators with the English language communication skills crucial for success in diverse healthcare settings.

Our program equips nursing professionals with the confidence and competence to communicate effectively, offer compassionate care, and enhance the overall patient experience. Graduates are well-prepared to work in a globalized healthcare landscape, making a positive impact on patients and their families from around the world.

Through participation in this program, students will gain confidence in practicing nursing in several global healthcare sectors, including (but not limited to) the following:

  • Medical establishments in English-speaking countries
  • Medical tourism industry
  • International hospitals

If you are aspiring to excel in nursing roles with an international dimension, this program is a transformative opportunity to sharpen your skills, improve your job candidacy, and make a meaningful difference in healthcare delivery.

Who Should Attend

This program is a good fit for you if you are a:

  • Nursing student
  • Nurse
  • Nurse educator

Learning Outcomes

This program is designed to enable you to:

  • Improve English speaking and listening comprehension for healthcare purposes
  • Develop intercultural skills
  • Observe Canadian nursing best practices
  • Network with nursing students, nurses or nurse educators

Delivery Format and Schedule

Sample Weekly Schedule

Time Monday Tueday Wednesday Thursday Friday
9:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Module 1
Medical English class

12 to 1:30 p.m.

Lunch break

1:30 to 3:30 p.m.

Module 2
Nursing seminar

Module 3
Healthcare facility visit

Module 2
Nursing seminar

Module 3
Healthcare facility visit

Sociocultural activities with monitors


Module 1: Specialized language

This module reinforces English speaking and listening comprehension language skills needed to provide primary care in common patient-nurse situations, such as in midwifery/obstetrics, pediatrics, geriatrics, triage assessment, surgery, oncology, trauma, emergency, and intensive/critical care.

Module 2: Field Specific Workshops

This module comprises workshops given by nurse educators and/or practicing nurses. Emphasis is placed on:

  • The McGill nurse education, including nursing practices in Quebec/Canada
  • An overview of the trends in the North American healthcare system

Module 3: Healthcare Facility Site Visits

Students will visit healthcare facilities to see first-hand how nursing is practiced in Quebec. They will have the opportunity to ask questions to healthcare professionals on duty.

Admission Requirements
  • This program is for students who attend under a partnership agreement between McGill SCS and their institution or agency.
  • Applicants must provide proof that they meet the minimum requirement of English language proficiency.
  • Applicants must have a sufficient academic background in nursing to take part in the program.

 ChecklistReady to take the next step?

Be sure to review all the necessary instructions and guidelines to help make your application process smooth and easy.

How to Apply

Application Deadlines

Language Requirements

Financial Aid

Tuition and Fees

International Students

Return to Areas of Study

Need help applying?

Contact us at info.conted [at]
or call 514-398-6200

Questions about your admission?

Contact us at admissions.scs [at]
or call 514-398-6200

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