Student teaching

Teaching English Language Learners


Whether planning to work within school districts in the U.S. or travel and teach overseas, the ability to effectively teach students the English language through our Teaching English Language Learners minor will open a variety of employment opportunities. Learning to teach English as an additional language adds to a pre-service teacher’s skill and enhances the resume of those working with refugees and New Americans.

Students not only learn the methods for teaching English language learners but also the language acquisition theories, socio-cultural influences, and program development strategies, which make them more culturally sensitive and effective instructors and leaders.

Fast Facts:

  • This minor program is open to all students, regardless of major. 
  • Courses may be taken at the undergraduate or graduate level.
  • Education majors completing this coursework may apply for the English as a Second Language (ESL) Program Specialist Certification through the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE).


Course Requirements

  • ELL 301: Supporting Literacy English Language Learners (3 credits)
  • ELL 400: Teaching ESL: Issues in Theory & Practice (3 credits)
  • ELL 405: Professionalism & Program Develop for ELL (3 credits)
  • WL 101: Culturally & Linguistically Diverse Learner (3 credits)
  • WL 312: Second Language Acquisition (3 credits)
  • WL 314: Introduction to Sociolinguistics (3 credits)
Learning Outcomes

    Provide candidates with a solid understanding of the principles of language acquisition, linguistics, and the unique needs of English Language Learners (ELLs) in educational settings.

    Equip candidates with a range of effective teaching strategies and techniques tailored to the needs of ELLs, including methods for teaching grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation, and language skills.

    Foster an understanding of cultural differences and how they impact language learning, enabling candidates to create inclusive and culturally responsive learning environments.

    Provide candidates with the skills to assess ELLs' language proficiency accurately, using a variety of assessment tools and techniques, and to use assessment data to inform instruction.

    Prepare candidates to collaborate effectively with colleagues, administrators, and families to support ELLs' language development and academic success. Also, equip them with the skills to advocate for ELLs’ needs within the educational system.

    Encourage ongoing professional development and reflective practice, including opportunities for candidates to engage in peer observation and feedback, participate in workshops and conferences related to ELL education, and stay current with research and best practices in the field.