The widespread role of English as an international lingua franca opens up many opportunities for trained English teachers globally. Increasingly, EFL (English as a foreign language) providers want to hire individuals with relevant training—not just those who are native or near-native speakers. The Department of Linguistics now offers a TESOL sub-plan within the Linguistics major as well as a TESOL minor. 

By offering the TESOL track (sub-plan) within the Linguistics major and a TESOL minor (for non-linguistics majors) as a replacement to the popular TESOL certificate program we can professionalize the TESOL teacher education that we offer at CU. Course offerings in the TESOL track and TESOL minor ensure that students take courses (required and elective) that best prepare them to meet the standards set forth by the TESOL International Association for teachers of English as an additional language. Students will be equipped with the knowledge, skills, and mindsets to work effectively and ethically as teachers of young learners, adolescents and adults in a range of contexts, domestic and abroad, including community-based programs, private language institutions, intensive English programs, and after school programs.

NOTE: The undergraduate TESOL certificate was retired for Fall 2020. Linguistics majors interested in TESOL will elect the LING-BA: TESOL track. Students who are not majoring in LING will elect the TESOL minor. Any student who declared the undergraduate TESOL certificate by Summer 2020 can complete the certificate or switch to the TESOL track (linguistics majors) or minor (non-linguistics majors).  Students who declare the Linguistics major will not be able to declare the TESOL minor; instead they would complete the proposed TESOL track within the Linguistics major. TESOL track and TESOL minor students will receive a TESOL Certificate issued by the Department of Linguistics.

Do you already have a baccalaureate degree? If so, please read about our Graduate Certificate in TESOL. This is a 5-course graduate level certificate available to non-degree post-bacc individuals and graduate students. 


TESOL Track within the Linguistics Major

General Requirements:

Linguistics Major Requirements:

  • 5 credits of foreign language at the 2000 or 3000 level (specific level depends on the language – see current linguistics major requirements for details)

  • 12 credits of foundational linguistics coursework – specifically:
    • LING 2000 – Introduction to Linguistics
    • LING 3100 – Language Sound Structures
    • LING 3430 – Semantics
    • LING 4420 – Morphology and Syntax 

TESOL Track Requirements

  • 12 credits of TESOL-focused courses. Required for all TESOL track students:
    • LING 4630 (formerly 3630): TESOL and Second Language Acquisition: Principles and Practices (3 credits)
    • LING 4610: English Structure for Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (3 credits)
    • LING 4620: Teaching Second Language (L2) Oral Skills and Communication (3 credits)
    • LING 4910: TESOL Practicum (3 credits)
       
  • 3 credits from the following elective options. Required for all TESOL track students.
    • COMM 3410 – Intercultural Communication
    • EDUC 2411 - Educational Psychology for Elementary Schools
    • EDUC 2425 – Foundations of Bilingual/Multicultural Education (*for Elementary Education Majors only)
    • EDUC 2625 – Teaching English as a Second Language
    • EDUC 4125 - Secondary World Language Methods
    • EDUC 4425 – Introduction to Bilingual/Multicultural Education (*equivalent to EDUC 2425; open to Education minors and non-majors)
    • EDUC 4455 - Methods of Biliteracy Instruction
    • EDUC 4615 - Language Acquisition for Bilingual Learners (*for Elementary Education Majors; limited capacity)
    • LING 3545 – World Language Policies
    • LING/ANTH 4800 – Language and Culture
    • LING/SLHS 4560 - Language Development

TESOL Minor

General Requirements:

    • 18 credits of LING and related coursework total
    • At least 12 credits of upper division LING coursework
    • All coursework applied to the minor must be completed with a grade of C- or better (no pass/fail work may be applied)
    • The grade point average for all minor degree course work must equal 2.00 (“C”) or higher
    • Students will be allowed to apply no more than 9 credit hours, including 6 upper division credit hours, of transfer work towards the minor
    • Students cannot declare both the major in linguistics and the minor in TESOL

    TESOL Minor Requirements

    • 12 credits of TESOL-focused courses. Required for all TESOL minor students:
      • LING 4630 (formerly 3630): TESOL and Second Language Acquisition: Principles and Practices (3 credits)
      • LING 4610: English Structure for Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (3 credits)
      • LING 4620: Teaching Second Language (L2) Oral Skills and Communication (3 credits)
      • LING 4910: TESOL Practicum (3 credits)
         
    • 6 credits from the following elective options. Required for all TESOL minor students.
      • COMM 3410 – Intercultural Communication
      • EDUC 2411 - Educational Psychology for Elementary Schools
      • EDUC 2425 – Foundations of Bilingual/Multicultural Education (*for Elementary Education Majors only)
      • EDUC 2625 – Teaching English as a Second Language
      • EDUC 4125 - Secondary World Language Methods
      • EDUC 4425 – Introduction to Bilingual/Multicultural Education (*equivalent to EDUC 2425; open to Education minors and non-majors)
      • EDUC 4455 - Methods of Biliteracy Instruction
      • EDUC 4615 - Language Acquisition for Bilingual Learners (*for Elementary Education Majors; limited capacity)
      • LING 3545 – World Language Policies
      • LING/ANTH 4800 – Language and Culture
      • LING/SLHS 4560 - Language Development

    Career Potential within the field of TESOL

    Individuals with evidence of training in TESOL are eligible to teach English as an additional language in a number of settings nationally and internationally. Opportunities include working for private and non-profit language programs in the U.S., tutoring learners face-to-face or online, and working as paraeducators in local schools. Internationally, there are many wonderful opportunities to combine a love of teaching with an interest in travel and living abroad. TESOL majors and minors will be attractive candidates for various English language teaching positions around the world such as: 

    Visit these online job boards for TESOL to see what other teaching opportunities are available:

    *Note: The TESOL track and minor do not count toward a PreK-12 teaching license or Colorado's Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CLD) Education endorsment, which is required to teach English as an additional language in U.S.-based elemntary, middle and high schools. To learn more about Teacher Licensure in the School of Education at CU Boulder, click here. To learn more about the CLD endorsment, click here.