Skip to main
Kindergarten teacher helping students.

Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Overview

The Master of Science in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) program leads to initial/professional certification. Track I candidates (who are seeking their first teaching certificate) must complete the 15-week New York State required student teaching experience. Track II candidates (who have a NYS teaching certificate in another content area) must complete 20 days of clinical practice experience within an ESL Pre-K–12 school environment. Professional Certification in New York State requires three years of teaching experience.

Teaching 7th grade history.

Career Opportunities

TESOL graduates typically teach in K-12 grade public schools, in English language institutes, in private schools, or for corporations around the world. For additional career information, visit the following sites:


  • 10-15 hours of fieldwork observation experience per course
  • The Clinical Experience (student teaching) is a semester-long capstone course in collaboration with local schools


Track I: 33 credits total | Track II: 36 credits total

  •  Education in Today’s Schools
  • Cultural Perspectives and the Teaching Learning Process
  • Linguistics and Language Development
  • The Teaching of Writing and the Writing Process

What We Offer
The Mercy Advantage

We have strong relationships with elementary and secondary schools across New York City and Westchester, ensuring that when students graduate they are prepared with experience and professional contacts.

Frequently Asked Questions

I didn’t major in education. Do I need to?

No. Just a liberal arts major. Or have completed a 30-credit sequence in a liberal arts content area.

Which state exams do I need to take to earn my initial or advanced certification as a teacher?

The following exams are required for initial candidates: EAS, CST(s) in your certification area(s), and the edTPA during student teaching, which is the last semester. Other state requirements include fingerprinting and workshops (DASA, Child Abuse, Violence Prevention, Health and Safety). The following exams are required for advanced candidates: CST(s) in your certification area(s).

What education programs do you offer?

The School of Education offers a Master of Science in Education with a concentration in one of the following areas: Early Childhood Education, Birth-Grade 2; Childhood Education, Grades 1-6; Secondary Education, 7-12; Teaching Literacy, Birth-Grade 12; Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL); Educational Supervision; Educational Administration

What are program pre-requisites?

Students interested in NYS TESOL Certification need to have completed 6 credits in English, Math, Science and Social Studies, as well as 12 credits in a Foreign Language. (Sign language is considered a foreign language.)

What if I already know a foreign language?

Mercy will accept credits earned through CLEP examinations.

Are there some frequently used links I might need during the application process?

Program Details & Curriculum

Curriculum Overview

Program and Course Requirements for Master of Science in TESOL - First Teaching Certificate

Track I: 36 Credits

Master of Science in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages - Additional Teaching Certificate

Track II: 33 Credits

For a full curriculum listing visit our catalog. 


Effective Educator Statement

Students must submit an Effective Educator Statement to complete their application. You can download requirements here. 

Please submit the completed statement to your application portal

Program Outcomes

By the end of this program, students should be able to: 

  • Demonstrate a solid content knowledge base that enables them to deliver effective educational and professional services based on current research, theory and practice
  • Employ multiple pedagogical and professional strategies and tools to enable them to be effective practitioners in educational settings and deliver services that promote students’ intellectual, social, and emotional development
  • Understand the diverse cultural, linguistic, learning, and social strengths and needs of all populations, and incorporate and demonstrate sensitivity to the richness of diverse cultures when providing educational and other school services
  • Employ technology to deliver information, instruction, and professional services to all members of the school community
  • Reflect on professional practice to make educational decisions and enhance student learning
  • Demonstrate positive dispositions that enable them to work as effective educators, citizens, and practitioners within the school and broader community