The Chulalongkorn University Language Institute, or CULI as it is popularly called, is an institution founded in 1977 to service the needs of its students for instruction in English language. It is housed in the Prem Purachatra Building – named in honor of a Thai prince and scholar, who in the last century, dedicated himself to the study of the English language and literature.
The institute has a large permanent staff of Thai nationals and a smaller contracted staff of English native speakers. Their mission is to develop the language skills of the university’s students and provide a center of instruction for others including public officials, teachers and members of the public with an interest in improving their English skills. Thus almost all Chulalongkorn University freshmen enroll in the foundation course – Experiential English – when they begin their studies. In subsequent years they will take courses at CULI that are more precisely designed to support them in their major area of study. Postgraduates may return to the institute to complete an M.A. or Ph.D in English as an International Language or to do a course in preparation for an IELTS or TOEFL exam. The role of the Institute has developed over the 30 years of its life. CULI carries out research into English as a Foreign Language. It also organizes the national seminars annually and international conferences every four years. It regularly publishes PASAA, the oldest professional language teaching journal in English in Thailand and PASAA PARITAT, an annual publication of the English Language teaching journal in Thai. More recently it has begun providing English instruction for Thai and overseas students who enroll in international courses in Business Studies, Architecture, Engineering, Science, and Communication Arts in which the medium of instruction is English. Its expanded role means that the institute operates all months of the year and often on weekends and in the evenings in order to serve a very large and varied clientele.