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Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) Certification

Drexel University School of Education - Online

A significant demand for well-trained English as a second language (ESL) teachers exists throughout the United States. In areas such as education, business, hospitality and many more, the opportunities to teach English as a Second Language abound.

Drexel’s Certification in Teaching English as a Second Language*, approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, provides a strong foundation for second language acquisition.

TESL Certification Courses & Curriculum

The 13.5-credit Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL)​ certification program is taught by expert faculty who integrate readings, discussion, practicum, and case study experience throughout the program.

Curriculum covers the theory and practice of second language education, the structure and sound of English, the design and assessment of ESL course materials, as well as broader issues in intercultural learning. It does not require that the instructor speak another language.

C​redits earned through this online TESL certification program may be applied toward the MS in Teaching, Learning and Curriculum:
Advanced Teaching Track​

Course descriptions may be found in the Drexel University Course Catalog​.

ESL Teaching Certification Program Requirements

Teaching English as a second language in Pennsylvania requires the Program Specialist: ESL certificate.

English as a Second Language teacher certification is a Pennsylvania add-on certificate available to students who currently possess a Pennsylvania Instructional I or Instructional II teaching certificate. This online ESL program satisfies PA State of Education requirements for certification in Teaching English as a Second Language. Upon completion of the program, the student may then apply for PA ESL Specialist certification on Pennsylvania​'s TIMS system to obtain a Pennsylvania ESL position.

Teaching English as a Second Language requirements vary state by state; applicants from outside PA should consult with their state Department of Education prior to enrolling in our program for specific interstate agreement requirements.

The program can be completed in as little as 6 to 12 months. To review program information or to apply,* visit Drexel Online.​

How to Apply to the TESL Certification Program

The Teaching English as a Second Language Certification program is taught 100% online. You can get started by filling out the Drexel Online application.

*NOTE:The Drexel TESL credential is designed as an add-on credential for certified teachers working in U.S. elementary and secondary schools. It is not designed for teaching English outside the United States and may not be modified to do so.

While some of the theory and pedagogical approaches for teaching English language learners is the same, the school contexts and the experience of students and their families is very different in an immigrant context such as the U.S. as opposed to an international setting where English is a foreign language.

Further, the course curricula, readings, and assignments in the Drexel TESL credential assume the U.S. school context, including current standards, testing mandates and curricular approaches.