COVID-19 Updates

Read the latest updates.

Additional Opportunities

ELSA Certificate of Specialized Study

In addition to the ELSA Certificate of Completion, students can choose to earn an ELSA Certificate of Specialized Study.

After completing their first year, students select four Elmhurst University courses over two years from various areas of interest. Past areas have included English, Business, Art, Music, Theater, Geography and Information Technology. The courses can include two introduction and two advanced courses, and are determined on a case-by-case basis, with the help of the associate director and approval of the department chair.


Students may consider enrolling in the ELSA+ program, taking Elmhurst University courses for credit. Upon completion, students will receive an Elmhurst University transcript that may be used to transfer as a dual-enrolled degree student at Elmhurst University. It is recommended ELSA+ students take one college course for credit in addition to three ELSA courses.

ELSA+ students will have access to standard college accommodations and must demonstrate academic ability and sufficient independence. Before enrolling in ELSA+, students must complete at least one semester of the ELSA program. Course selections will be approved on a case-by-case basis by ELSA advising staff.

The Advantage Program

Students enrolled in a degree program at the University, and interested in some support from ELSA, have the opportunity to enroll in one ELSA course alongside three degree courses at the University. Students must apply and be admitted into Elmhurst University first. Once admitted, students can submit an ELSA application along with their most recent IEP and educational evaluations. Candidates will be invited in for an interview to determine which ELSA courses may best complement the student’s goals.

Students will work closely with the University disability coordinator for academic accommodations desired for degree courses. Students have pursued ELSA courses such as: Introduction to College Life, Education Coaching, Self Determination, Individual Literacy Needs, and various career exploration courses. Students interested in the Advantage Program are strongly recommended to meet with the ELSA associate director, and the University access and disability coordinator prior to completing an ELSA application.

ELSA Alumni Continuing Education Program

The ELSA Alumni Continuing Education Program offers graduates the opportunity to return to Elmhurst University and take any new courses that faculty have been introduced since graduation. The program gives alumni an opportunity to learn, reconnect with the University, and make new friends.

Alumni may take one free ELSA course each school year with approval from the program director or associate director. Alumni can register one week prior to the beginning of the semester and can choose to either audit the course or to receive a letter grade.

Connect with #elmhurstu