English, the international language of business and politics, has become a popular language to learn—and to teach. With an enormous demand for English teachers throughout the world, becoming a certified ESL teacher opens doors to opportunities ranging from teaching English in your home country to teaching English while traveling the world.
Through TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) certification programs, non-native English speakers can become proficient in English language teaching methods to teach English to other non-native English speakers. TESOL programs are offered at several ESL schools in the US, and some even offer customized programs for international groups.
Most TESOL programs range from one to several months, and generally include a hands-on practical teaching component. The New York Institute of Technology (NYIT) offers an eight-week TESOL certificate that includes key topics such as curriculum design and cultural awareness. Students gain hands-on experience through opportunities to teach ESL classes at NYIT’s English Language Institute, completing the certificate with confidence and the skills necessary to begin a successful teaching career.
For those interested in a more in-depth program, the University of Louisiana at Lafayette offers a master’s in English with a concentration in TESOL. Students may pursue electives in linguistics, computer science, psychology, curriculum and instruction, and more.
Similarly, Chatham University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania offers a Master of Arts in Teaching for students interested in teaching English or other topics in secondary education.
At California State University, San Bernardino, students may opt to pursue a 15-month Master of Arts in Education with a TESOL Option, a 120-hour or Advanced TESOL Certificate Program, or a one-month Teacher Training program.
Current English teachers in other countries may wish to improve their teaching skills in an immersive English environment in the United States. Boston University’s Center for English Language & Orientation Programs offers a unique English Teacher Development Program for non-native English teachers. The four-week program focuses on American English teaching techniques using literature for high school and college classrooms.
Whether interested in a short-term program to gain advanced English teaching skills or an in-depth master’s program, teaching English is a field that will only continue to increase in importance and popularity. A TESOL program may be your ticket to a fulfilling, international career in a field that brings together the best of culture, travel, and education.