Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)

The TESOL program is designed for teachers and others interested in enhancing their knowledge and expertise in working with linguistically diverse students in school and community settings. Completion of the sequence of courses leads to endorsement in ESL. Completion of the sequence of courses and passing a proficiency exam in a foreign language will lead to the Bilingual Education endorsement.

The six-course ESL endorsement sequence focuses on teaching the English language arts (reading, writing, speaking, and listening) across content areas to children who are second-language learners and on effective teaching in bilingual programs.

Each course is 3 credit hours, resulting in a total of 18 credit hours for the program. The required ESL and/or bilingual field experience equals 100 clock hours. This field experience component is met within the six-course sequence. Candidates who have taught as licensed educators in classrooms with English language learners and/or emerging bilinguals may have the field experiences requirements waived with documentation from school administrators.

It may be possible to complete field experience hours for an ESL and/or bilingual education endorsement course while concurrently completing field experience hours for a professional education course in early childhood education, elementary education, secondary education, or special education program if the field experience goals for each of the two concurrent courses can be fulfilled simultaneously in the same field setting. Teacher education candidates must obtain approval from their course instructors to fulfill field experience requirements in the same field setting for concurrent courses. Individuals who are granted an ESL and/or bilingual education endorsement may teach in this capacity only at the grade levels for which their professional educator license is valid.

Master of Arts in TESOL (30 credit hours)

To earn a Master of Arts Degree in TESOL, the program requires a minimum 30 credit hours (including core course requirements).

Required Courses (18 credit hours)

ESL Endorsement

ESL Endorsement only candidates must take: 

*In place of EDGTE 482 candidates for the ESL endorsement can elect to take the following course:

Bilingual Education Endorsement*

Those candidates who wish to be endorsed in Bilingual Education must take: 

*To qualify for the BE Endorsement, candidates must pass the Illinois Language Proficiency Test in one of the languages offered.

 Core Course Requirements (12 credit hours)

TESOL Certificate (GR)

The TESOL Certificate prepares candidates to teach English to adults and children in informal settings both in the U.S. and abroad. Candidates will gain knowledge and skills in pedagogy, intercultural competencies, language structure and teaching practice in supervised settings. This Certificate will be issued by the university (not the state of Illinois)  upon the successful completion of the following courses:

Completion of the core courses for the program and additional courses approved by the candidate's advisor will lead to the master of arts degree.

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