ESL Program Specialist Certificate

Immaculata University has been approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education as a training program provider for the ESL Program Specialist Certificate. Please visit the PDE ESL Program Specialist webpage for more information.


Teachers of ESL will learn about or further develop awareness of:

  • the nature of and variation in language in general and in English in particular
  • the English language learner in terms of language development and support services needed
  • the principles and practices of second language teaching and assessment
  • the implications of cross-cultural factors in education contexts

Teachers interested in ESL training should contact the Cultural and Linguistic Diversity program coordinator, Dr. Margaret van Naerssen, Teachers who have professional training and experience in ESL and related areas are also encouraged to make an appointment to review their credentials with the coordinator.  



Prerequisites for admission to the program, based on the PDE framework, are given below:

  1. Pennsylvania Instructional I or II certificate, or its equivalent from another state
  2. Proficiency in all aspects of English (reading, writing, speaking, and listening)
  • Graduates of PA colleges need to demonstrate proficiency in English by passing the required tests of basic skills, as well as the two English courses required for admission to a PA-approved teacher preparation program.
  • Foreign candidates must demonstrate proficiency in English via the American Council for the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) test called the "English Language Oral Proficiency Interview" (OPI). The score required for successful completion is Advanced Mid. Register for the test.


Requirements (18-21 credits)

Course Number Course Name
Updated: January 2013
CLD 522 Introduction to Linguistics
CLD 534 Teaching English as a Second Language*
CLD 546 Multicultural/Multilingual Issues
CLD 548 Structure of English
CLD 555 Special Issues in ELL Education
CLD 564 Practicum in TESOL** (info)
CLD 545 ELL Assessment (course description)

*A methodology course

**Required if students have less than 45 hours of regular ESL classroom teaching experience

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