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Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)


English is arguably the most predominant language through which people communicate, connect and transact business in the emerging global community of the 21st century. The increased fluidity of international borders, the relative ease of travel and the growing global market presence has made the demand for quality English language programs and TESOL instructors higher than ever – both abroad and in the United States.

Designed to offer a balance of current theory and practical experience in second language acquisition instructional methods, the Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages certificate will prepare you with foundational knowledge and real-world skills to effectively step into a career in TESOL. Courses provide a comprehensive study of core knowledge in the field, including aspects of linguistics and sociolinguistics, the structure of English, methodology of teaching and assessing English, literacy development, curriculum development and language assessment.

Who Should Attend

Individuals with a bachelor’s degree who wish to teach English in a variety of ESL settings in the United States and overseas, recent graduates, international students, aspiring educators, career changers, and current teachers who wish to enhance their competencies in the field of TESOL.

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Program Benefits

  • Identify key foundational linguistic theories and the connection between those theories and effective teaching practices
  • Plan and implement dynamic language lessons designed to meet the needs and interests of your learners
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the structure of English and the ability to teach English grammar
  • Define the skills associated with reading comprehension and fluency and the best means to develop those skills
  • Identify key strategies to build your learners’ vocabulary skills
  • Construct effective assessments to evaluate your learners’ competencies in all skill areas
  • Receive TESOL-focused career guidance and coaching offered by TESOL experts
  • Enjoy flexible, online curriculum that is convenient to your busy schedule
  • Earn your certificate in as few as 8 months
On-Demand Webinar Event: Pursuing a Career in TESOL
Considering a career path in the exciting and growing field of TESOL? You're invited to watch facilitator Lesley Clear, Ph.D., ESL/EFL teacher and a UCI Continuing Education distinguished instructor, as she and a panel of experts explore a number of topics including opportunities in the field, the benefits and challenges of this career, advancing your professional and personal goals with a TESOL certificate from UCI Continuing Education, and more.

Course Schedule

LINGUIS X480.7 (Teaching Practicum) should be taken after a minimum of five required TESOL courses have been successfully completed.

Required Courses

Theories of TESOL (2 units)
  Online   to be scheduled
Methods of TESOL (2 units)
to be scheduled   Online  
Teaching Listening & Speaking Skills (1.5 units)
  Online   to be scheduled
Teaching Reading & Vocabulary Skills (1.5 units)
to be scheduled   Online  
Teaching English Grammar (1.5 units)
  Online   to be scheduled
Teaching Writing & Vocabulary Skills (1.5 units)
to be scheduled   Online  
Teaching Practicum (3 units)
  Online   to be scheduled

Elective Courses

Teaching English to Speakers of Other La
Teaching in Adult Education Programs (1 unit)
  Online   to be scheduled
Teaching English Internationally (1 unit)
to be scheduled   Online  
  Online   to be scheduled
to be scheduled to be scheduled to be scheduled to be scheduled

Course schedules are subject to change. Individual courses may be taken without enrolling in the full certificate.

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Certificate Eligibility and Requirements

A bachelor's degree (in any discipline), or its equivalent, is required for admission into the program. A certificate is awarded upon completion of seven core courses, including the Teaching Practicum course, and two elective courses for a total of 150 hours of instruction. Students must earn a letter grade of “B” or better in each course in order to be eligible for the certificate. To become an official candidate in the program, students pursuing the certificate must submit a Declaration of Candidacy. Students are encouraged to declare candidacy as soon as possible, but no later than after the third course in the program. To receive the certificate after completing all program requirements, students must submit a Request for Certificate. All requirements must be completed within five (5) years after the student enrolls in his/her first course. Students not pursuing a certificate are welcome to take as many individual courses as they wish.

Transfer Credit

UCI Continuing Education has partnered with Notre Dame de Namur University (NDNU) to give TESOL certificate program graduates the opportunity to transfer approved and articulated credit toward a master's degree in TESOL at NDNU. To learn more, please email or call (949) 824-9427.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How much does the program cost?
  • Estimated course fees: $3,300 (see individual course pricing list)
    Estimated Textbook/course materials: $500
    Estimated advancement to candidacy fee: $125
    Total estimated cost for the program: $3,925
    Please note that all estimated costs are subject to change.
  • Do I have to pay for the entire program before classes begin?
  • No. Although you do have the option to pay for the program upfront, you may pay-as-you go by just paying for each course only when you enroll in it. Keep in mind that course fees do not include the cost of textbooks and course materials (if applicable).
  • How do I get my textbooks?
  • Textbook(s) may be purchased or rented from a vendor of your choice, such as
  • How long will it take me to complete the entire program?
  • You may complete the program in as few as 8 months.
  • Do I have to apply and be accepted before I start?
  • No. There is no formal application process as this is a continuing professional education and not a degree program. Please keep in mind however that having a bachelor's degree is a prerequisite. Proof of the degree should be submitted via email to prior to enrolling in your first course in our TESOL certificate program.
  • Where can I find the course schedule? Do I have to take the classes in order?
  • Please visit Course Schedule and click on the green online button(s) pertaining to the course(s) for detailed information and opportunity to enroll. Although there is no sequence for taking the courses, you must take your required Teaching Practicum course (LINGUIS X480.7) following the successful completion of all your other 6 required courses.
  • When should I enroll?
  • The sooner you enroll in courses the better.
  • Can I complete the entire program online?
  • Yes.
  • I've never taken an online class. How does it work? Is it self-paced?
  • Our online courses are structured and instructor-led. You will learn in your own time – reading, watching videos or listening to material supplied, doing course activities and assignments and completing assessments. You'll enjoy full support throughout your studies, with instructors available online to guide, advise and offer feedback on your progress. The syllabus will list timelines and due dates for assignments and project(s). You are expected to be fully engaged and log in at least 3 times a week to complete readings, assignments, and participate in discussion forums. Students will spend approximately 5-10 hours a week on each course - this is an estimate and will vary for each student. Please refer to the Online Frequently Asked Questions for more information on our online courses. If you would like to experience a tour of our online courses, please visit Experience an Online Course.
  • I am an international student / I am located overseas – am I able to enroll?
  • Yes.
  • Do you offer job placement at the end of the program?
  • No. Although UCI DCE does not offer placement services, completing a robust program and earning your TESOL certificate from a reputable institution, such as UC Irvine, will help advance your career prospects, while expanding your knowledge base and increasing your expertise in teaching English to speakers of other languages. Whether you are a newcomer to the field or a seasoned professional, you will also be able to benefit from networking opportunities resulting from your interaction with your instructor and classmates, who may come from a variety of fields and backgrounds.
  • Is UC Irvine Division of Continuing Education an accredited institution?
  • Yes. We are part of the University of California system of schools, and are accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). DCE certificate programs and courses are approved by the appropriate academic schools within the University of California, Irvine. For more information, please see UCI Accreditation.
  • What is the “declaration of candidacy”? When do I have to complete it?
  • If you are enrolled in the TESOL certificate program, you are urged to declare your candidacy prior to enrolling in the third course in the series. You will declare your intention to remain in the certificate program by filing the Declaration of Candidacy Form and paying the accompanying fee. This will allow us to monitor your progress toward completion, and to ensure the relevance and currency of your studies, in alignment with the trends, standards and expectations in the TESOL field.
  • What if I can't find the answer to my question?
  • If you have any additional questions, please feel free to contact Nokteh Taheri, Ed.D. at or (949) 824-9427.

Advisory Committee

  • Miralynn Malupa-Kim, Ed.D., Instructor, TESOL International Organization
  • Sarah Sahr, Ed.D., Director of Professional Learning & Research, TESOL International Association
  • Neda Sahranavard, Ph.D., ESL Instructor, Santa Ana College, International Programs, UCI Division of Continuing Education, and Lecturer, UCI Program in Academic English
  • Christopher Stillwell, M.A., Instructor, International Programs, UCI Division of Continuing Education
  • Yilin Sun, Ph.D., Director, English Language Centre at University of Macau, Professor of TESOL/Basic and Transitional Studies, Seattle Colleges-South Seattle College, Past (2014-2015) President of TESOL International Association
  • Patricia Szasz, M.A., Assistant Dean for Language & Professional Programs & TESOL Adjunct Faculty, Graduate School of Translation, Interpretation, and Language Education, Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

English Proficiency Requirement
All certificate programs at UCI Division of Continuing Education (classroom and online formats) require professional-level English language proficiency in listening and note-taking, reading comprehension and vocabulary, written expression, and oral presentation.