Only New York and California offer more TESOL degree, ESL teacher certification, and applied linguistics graduate programs than Massachusetts. In addition, Massachusetts institutions have flexibility in their program delivery formats, including on-campus, hybrid, and online-only courses of study. Many Massachusetts programs incorporate ESL teacher certification or endorsements within their Master of Arts TESOL degrees.
ESL Teacher Certification
According to DESE’s English Language Learners Teacher Qualifications guide, teachers of ESL and sheltered English immersion programs must have coursework in second language acquisition, sheltering core content, ESL assessment, and integrating reading and writing in the sheltered content environment. Teachers may earn licenses or endorsements in English as a Second Language, at either the PreK-6 or 5-12 level.
Alternative Certification Options
DESE operates a waiver program that allows candidates to complete state licensure requirements while working in a K-12 public school. The Licensure guide describes how current employees can apply for a waiver. DESE also keeps a list of Educator Preparation Programs that includes Alternative and Practice-Based Licensure Programs. Use the online Licensure Help tool to view the latest requirements for the field, grade, and type of educator license or endorsement you seek.
Master’s in TESOL Programs
Gordon College offers the only graduate education program in the state that has a Master of Arts in TESOL track that has earned the commendation of the 2013 National Council on Teacher Quality, the Master of Education in English as Second Language. Students in the master’s program choose one of two tracks, initial teaching ESL certification or an ESL certificate endorsement. University of Massachusetts Boston offers two tracks for itsMaster of Arts in Applied Linguistics programs: on-campus or completely online. Students in the campus-based program have the opportunity to integrate TESOL coursework into their studies so they can earn an English as a Second Language (ESL) Teaching License PK-6 and 5-12.