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English to Spanish dictionary.

Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Overview

Our advanced certificate program offers future TESOL educators a firm grasp of linguistics and grammar, as well as a strong foundation in education theories and practice.

Students in our TESOL Advanced Certificate program hold a prerequisite base certificate and seek to earn additional certification to teach English Language Learners.

Teaching English to non-speakers.

Career Opportunities

TESOL instructors can work in a variety of settings including teaching in:

  • K-12 grade public schools
  • English language institutes
  • Private schools
  • Corporations globally

What You'll Get

  • Provides the content and pedagogical skills to teach a second language

  • Provides learner-centered TESOL programs

  • Provides faculty guidance and support

  • Requires: 12 credits of college-level course work in a language other than English, an initial teaching certificate in any area, and a Master's Degree


Outside the Classroom

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.

National Accreditation

Mercy College’s national accreditation provides a seal of approval and enhances our graduates’ credentials when seeking employment.

  • National Council for the Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE)
  • Council for the Accreditation of Educator Professionals (CAEP)
  • International Literacy Association (ILA)

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I already know a foreign language?

Mercy will accept credits earned through CLEP examinations.

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.

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 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.)

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

Program Details & Curriculum

Curriculum Overview

The Advanced Certificate in TESOL program prepares candidates who hold a base certificate to earn additional certification in ESOL Pre K - 12 and to teach English Language Learners in general, ENL classrooms, or in other ENL instructional settings. The program is also designed for those who are looking to add an ESOL endorsement to better serve the English Language Learners in their class. 

Total: 15 Credits

For a full curriculum listing visit our catalog. 


Certification Requirements

  • 15 credits of graduate coursework
  • 20 days of clinical practice experience in an ESL Pre-K-12 school environment
  • Teaching certificate in another discipline
  • Three years of teaching experience
  • Evidence of 12 credits of college level work in a language other than English or its equivalent
  • Completion of the Content Specialty Test in ESOL. 

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

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

Degree Completion

To complete the certificate students are required to complete the following:

► 20-day clinical practice experience in ESOL classrooms

► Documentation of 12 credits in a language other than English

► Successful completion of the Content Specialty Test in ESOL