United States Certificate in ESL/TESOL
Educators interested in teaching English as a second language might be interested in ESL/TESOL certification. Certificate programs might prepare students for careers teaching abroad, or for teachers interested in teaching in the public classroom.
Do you have the desire to teach English to non-native English speakers? If so, your first step in pursuing a career as an ESL (English as a Second Language)/TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) instructor might be to start preparing to study for your certificate in ESL/TESOL. Regular education teachers who are interested in widening their experience may also want to consider this additional qualification.
According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, there continues to be an increase in ESL students throughout the nation’s public schools, which is good news for those who are looking to enhance their careers1.
Job changers and recent college grads may also be interested in studying for the certificate in ESL/TESOL, especially those students who are familiar with the nuances of other cultures and the many difficulties that non-native English speakers experience when learning a new language.
An Overview of Certificate Programs in ESL/TESOL
There are two types of certificate programs that students can apply for. They include a graduate certificate and an independent certificate. Both of them require a bachelor’s degree2.
Graduate certificates are taught at the university level they may take two to four semesters worth of work to complete. The credits that students receive might be transferrable to some master’s degree in ESOL/TESOL. Independent certificate programs, which take between two and six weeks to complete, focus on practical training and the different methods of teaching a second language. This particular certificate can usually not be applied toward a state teaching license or a master’s degree3.
Common Program Requirements for ESL/TESOL Certificates
If you enroll in an ESL/TESOL certificate program, expect to experience a blend of academic instruction and practical training. The idea is to give you a chance to learn the theoretical aspects of TESOL, which include teaching methodologies, the theory of language learning, assessment skills, linguistics and cross-cultural communication, in addition to practical training through supervised student teaching and mentoring opportunities.
Students may take the following courses while studying for the ESL/TESOL certificate:
- Classroom Practices & Practicum – students may learn how to plan lessons, create activities for students, evaluate materials, manage a classroom setting, give feedback and promote learner autonomy.
- Second Language Acquisition – this course focuses on how languages are learned and the impact the learner and learning environment have on the process.
- Pedagogical Grammar – discuss how sentences are structured and languages are used, and also become more familiar with the difference nuances of English grammar.
- Intercultural Communication – students learn how spoken and written language varies across cultures.
- Assessment – students learn about the design, development and scoring of standardized tests.
Student teaching and senior teacher mentoring is an important aspect of many TESOL certificate programs and can make the difference when graduates step foot in the classroom as ESL instructors for the first time. If you are interested in pursuing this exciting and growing field, earning a Certificate in ESL/TESOL may be a good place to begin4.
- Pittsburgh, PAPittsburgh, PA
The ESL Program at Duquesne University provides a number of different services for state certified teachers as well as for those who wish to teach ESL/EFL in language centers or in higher education institutions worldwide.
Emporia State University
- Teaneck, NJTeaneck, NJ
Fairleigh Dickinson University
The field of teaching English to speakers of other languages requires highly specialized training.
- Johnson City, TNJohnson City, TN
East Tennessee State University
To provide knowledge and skills necessary to teach English as a second language in a variety of settings beyond public schools.
Gain the qualifications and practical skills to teach English in any setting. MS in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Online - 30 credit hours You’ll learn to teach students who speak many different languages, and you don’t...
University of North Dakota
Teach ELL students in K-12 schools, in adult ELL programs, or by teaching English abroad. 100% online. Pay in-state tuition.
- New York City, NYNew York City, NY
Columbia University's TESOL Certificate Program is an intensive eight-week session that prepares students to teach in a variety of academic settings.
- Youngstown, OHYoungstown, OH
Youngstown State University
This four-course sequence (12 semester hours) is valuable for anyone who wishes to gain more knowledge of second/foreign language learning.
- Montclair, NJMontclair, NJ
Montclair State University
In 1988, the University reorganized its long-standing, successful credit and non-credit English as a Second Language (ESL) programs within the Center...
- Spokane, WASpokane, WA
Gonzaga University’s MA/TESL offers a program of studies and a practicum for students who are interested in the learning and teaching of English to speakers of other languages. The MA/TESL degree is designed to prepare professional and knowledgeable...
- Provo, UTProvo, UT
Brigham Young University
- Liberty, MOLiberty, MO
Northwest Missouri State University
Northwest offers an add-on certification for ELL/ESOL. ELL Certification is a 21 hour program and recommended for mainstream elementary and secondary teachers who have English language learners in their classes and have completed a Masters degree in Edu...
- Maryville, MO
- Rochester, MIRochester, MI
The program consists of 20 credits in Applied Language Studies and Linguistics as set forth below.
- Columbus, OHColumbus, OH
Ohio Dominican University
The MA in TESOL is a comprehensive, well-rounded program that effectively addresses language, culture, instruction, assessment and professionalism. Our program provides a firm foundation in TESOL history, principles and practices as well as research met...
- Wilkes-Barre, PAWilkes-Barre, PA
12-credit graduate certificate program for teachers...
- Honolulu, HIHonolulu, HI
University of Hawaii At Manoa
- Immaculata, PAImmaculata, PA
The increasing number of persons of limited English proficiency demands teachers, counselors, administrators, and social workers that are well-prepared. The Master of Arts program in Cultural and Linguistic Diversity responds to a genuine need and offer...
- Bridgewater, MABridgewater, MA
Bridgewater State University
The College of Graduate Studies at Bridgewater State University is proud to announce a new offering in our Master of Arts in Teaching program. The M.A.T. in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) program is designed to provide languag...
- Pittsburgh, PAPittsburgh, PA
University of Pittsburgh
A certificate in the teaching of English to speakers of other languages may accompany or follow the MA or PhD degree in linguistics or other areas. Th...
- Naperville, ILNaperville, IL
North Central College
Learn how to better meet the needs of your students who do not have English as their primary language. The endorsement is applicable to the grade levels of one’s existing teaching license.
- La Mirada, CALa Mirada, CA
M.A. in TESOL is designed to develop both a solid academic foundation in second language pedagogy and practical skills in teaching English in crosscultural situations. The MA in TESOL exists to prepare teachers and other language professionals to impact...
- Mankato, MNMankato, MN
Minnesota State University - Mankato
- Dekalb, ILDekalb, IL
Northern Illinois University