TESOL Certificate - Frequently Asked Questions
What can I do with a certificate in TESOL?
This certificate can help you find an entry level position teaching English in a language institute or and adult education program in the United States or abroad. Web links for additional career information can be found at the bottom of this page.
How do I get admitted to the TESOL Certificate program?
Fill out the online application and submit to the ESL office. Apply as early as possible so you will have time to complete the requirements.
In addition to application for the certificate program, undergraduates need to fill out a pink form to have the certificate added to their DARS report. Then it will appear on the transcript after the certificate is completed.
Academic requirements for the program are as follows:
- Junior standing for undergraduate students, graduate students, or special student status for students with BA or BS degrees;
- Native English speakers must show completion of four college-level semesters of one language (prior to or completed concurrently with certificate coursework);
- Nonnative English speakers are required to show English language proficiency in the following ways:
- A minimum score of 50 on TSE or SPEAK or an iBT score of 26 on the speaking section of the TOEFL
- A minimum score of 100 on the iBT or 600 on the paper-based version of the TOEFL, or a minimum score of 84 on MELAB, or 7 on the IELTS can be substituted for the TOEFL.
What courses must I take to complete the certificate?
Twenty-one hours of course work are required for the certificate. The coursework is as follows:
- Foundation courses
- Eng 324 Structure of English
- Eng 330 English Phonology
- Eng 334 Introduction to TESOL Methods
- Second Language Acquisition and Teaching courses
- Eng 333 Second Language Acquisition
- Eng 335 Techniques and Materials for TESOL
- Eng 337 TESOL Workshops (3 one-credit modules)
- Social Perspectives on English elective courses (one elective is required)
- Eng 331 English Language Variation in the U.S.A.
- Eng 332 Global Spread of English
- Eng 336 English in Society
- Eng 341 Gender and Language
How long does it take to complete the certificate?
It normally takes 3 or 4 semesters to complete the program.
Can I complete the certificate in one year?
If you plan carefully and can fit all the courses into your schedule, it may be possible. Please note that some courses are given only in the fall or only in the spring. A possible schedule for a student starting in fall is:
- Fall Semester:
- English 324
- English 330 (Offered fall only.)
- English 334 (This course must precede 335 and 337.)
- English 332 (Offered fall only.)
- Spring Semester:
- English 333
- English 335
- English 337 (Offered spring only.)
- Your elective (336, 331, ...)
What kind of practical training and classroom experience will I get in the TESOL Certificate program?
- English 334: tutoring
- English 335: teaching practicum
- English 337: practical training for teaching language skills such as reading, writing, grammar, pronunciation and oral skills
Which classes from my TESOL Certificate would apply if I chose to continue for an MA later?
At most only 3 credits might apply, but it is not automatic. You must check with the TESOL Certificate or MA advisor.
When and how do I get my certificate?
One you have completed all course requirement, notify the ESL program, 5134 Helen C. White, email@example.com. Graduate and special students must also have the Registrar send an official transcript to the ESL office for course and GPA review. The following link will assist you in requesting transcripts: http://helpdesk.wisc.edu/page.php?id=4107
Who can I contact for more information?
For general questions, please contact:
7123 Helen C. White Hall
600 N. Park Street
Madison WI, 53706
Where can I find job listings for TESOL jobs?
The sites listed below are full of opportunities. The English Department and the TESOL Certificate Program cannot take responsibility for the truthfulness of any of the sites or the trustworthiness of the employers. Be careful and check out the employers listed.
This site, maintained by the University of Wisconsin, offers links to search sites and tips on securing international employment. Go Global provides a good overview of international employment. Check it out!
This job site is maintained by the TESOL organization, the national professional organization. Many of the jobs require an MA in TESOL or a related field, but not all.
Dave's ESL Cafe is probably the largest ESL/EFL-related web site, complete with many job listings, lesson plans, tips on working abroad and more.
This site contains links to other sites and lists a number of jobs worldwide. Many require only an undergraduate degree, with a TESOL Certificate as a desired additional qualification.