Become an ESL Peer Consultant

General Information

ESL peer consultation can be a wonderful experience if you aspire to or enjoy working with people from different cultures. You can gain valuable experience as a peer consultant if you have career interests in languages, cross-cultural teaching or other helping professions. Peer consultation is a great opportunity to get to know other people, languages and cultures, especially for students who have traveled or plan to travel. Most ESL peer consultees are graduate students.


To be an ESL peer consultant, you must:

  • be a native English speaker or be highly fluent in English
  • speak at least one language other than English
  • have earned an A- or better in at least one academic course
  • be an enrolled degree candidate in Harvard College, GSAS, HGSE, or HKS.


As an ESL peer consultant, you are expected to:

  • attend an orientation/training session at the beginning of the academic year
  • work with a minimum of two consultees concurrently throughout the academic year
  • participate in monthly group meetings with program supervisors and other peer consultants to discuss your experience, ask questions, and seek support or resources
  • provide your consultee(s) with at least 24 hours notice if you need to cancel a session


ESL Peer Consultants are paid $16 per hour.

Please refer to the ESL Peer Consultant Handbook for more detailed information on becoming a peer consultant.

ESL Peer Consultation Application Process

We are no longer accepting applications for 2016-17. 

Scheduling Sessions

It is up to you and your consultee to determine where, when, and for how long you meet. You can set a weekly time or meet on a per-session basis.

By advance mutual agreement between you and your consultee, you may also charge for one half hour of preparation time for each consulting session.


If your consultee needs to cancel an appointment, he/she must notify you 24 hours in advance or you have the right to charge for one missed hour. You are also expected to provide your consultee(s) with at least 24 hours notice if you need to cancel a session.

Questions and Concerns About Consultation

Whatever the reason, please let us know if the consultation is not working out, so we can advise you and/or make a new consultant/consultee match. We welcome your feedback on any aspect of your peer consulting experience.