ESL offers a number of different options for students seeking careers in both the ESL teaching and professional fields. The program also serves the university in providing ESL coursework for state-certified teachers and school professionals. The programs and services provided include:

The English as a Second Language Program at Duquesne University is nationally recognized by the Teachers of English Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and Specialized Professional Associations (SPAs) associated with the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

TESOL Certificate

(18 credit hours)

The TESOL (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages) Certificate is a graduate, post-bachelor's certificate that provides students from any academic or professional background with the fundamental skills necessary to the field of English language teaching. The TESOL Certificate Program consists of an 18 credit-hour graduate-level curriculum that presents candidates with a foundation in second language learning theories, English language structure, and practical instructional strategies based on TESOL standards. The program may be completed in just 2-3 semesters and can be taken concurrently with the ESL M.S. Ed. or as a stand-alone post-bachelor's certificate. Graduates with a TESOL Certificate are prepared for multiple fields, including: ESL teaching in private schools in the U.S., EFL teaching in K-12 schools overseas, or ESL teaching in language learning centers or university ESL classrooms both locally and internationally.

Contact Information


Admission Requirements

3.0 GPA
Personal statement
TOEFL or IELTS score for international students

Application Check List

Online Application
Official transcripts from undergraduate an/or graduate degree from an accredited college or university
A 1000-word statement describing your academic and professional goals
TOEFL/IELTS score (International students)

ESL Courses

GESL 508 Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners (3 credits)
GESL 510 Theories and Practice of Second Language Learning (3 credits)
GESL 512 ESL Curriculum and Assessment (3 credits)
GESL 515 Sociolinguistics and the ESL Classroom (3 credits)
GESL 518 Integrated Literacy in the Content Areas (3 credits)
GESL 520 Advanced Grammar and Applied Linguistics (3 credits)
GESL 521 TESOL Methods (3 credits)
GRLA 525 Theories, Models, and Instruction of Writing (3 credits)
GESL 690 Practicum in ESL (3 credits)
GESL 600 K-12 ESL Practicum Fall/Spring (1 credit - For ESL Specialist Certificate Students only)

Learning Outcomes

  1. Build a solid background on the needs of culturally and linguistically diverse ELL
  2. Develop theoretical and empirical background regarding the impact of diversity on L2 attainment 
  3. Explore research-driven strategies to support diversity in ESL/EFL classrooms
  4. Study effective strategies to create diversity-friendly educational environments conducive to promote excellence, equity and success for ELLs
  5. Establish a comparative solid background on the first/second language acquisition processes
  6. Develop fundamental principles of alternative second language acquisition theory and research 
  7. Investigate the social, psychological and linguistic factors that influence second language learners 
  8. Incorporate SLA theories and ESL practices through research on current developments in ESL teacher education
  9. Develop theoretical and practical principles of syllabus design and curriculum development in ESL education 
  10. Study more effective ways of planning teaching goals, including course planning, syllabus design and successful learning outcomes
  11. Analyze, assess and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of different kinds of ESL programs and instructional materials, and make strategically sounds educational decisions 
  12. Understand fundamentals of different approaches and kinds of ESL tests and their backwash effects on the ESL instruction
  13. Critically examine different language tests and construct test items for productive, receptive and complementary language skills 
  14. Successfully calculate the reliability and validity of various types of tests
  15. Analyze different tests, interpret test results, and utilize them for appropriate and effective backwash effect
  16. Develop knowledge on the basic concepts and issues of Sociolinguistics
  17. Understand the relationship between language and social context
  18. Develop awareness of the impact of extra-linguistic factors on L2 learning and teaching
  19. Understand the literacy and academic language needs of CL diverse learners
  20. Apply current research-driven approaches to content-area instruction 
  21. Improve their skills in teaching ESL learners' Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, and other content areas
  22. Integrate technology with language instruction and the subject matter instruction.
  23. Execute caring professional responsibility both in and outside the school context