Department of English and Philosophy


TESOL Certificate Program


The English department offers a Graduate Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, which can be completed either as a stand-alone course of study or as part of the English MA or PhD program. The certificate is designed to serve the needs of teachers working or planning to work in ESL or EFL environments. Note: Students applying to or enrolled in the MA or PhD need to submit a separate application.


StudentOur TESOL program is designed to help teachers succeed in the classroom by improving their understanding of the theories, methodologies, resources and strategies used in effective ESL/EFL classrooms. The course incorporates the explicit goal of linking theory with practice, and provides teachers with plenty of hands-on opportunities designed to develop a skillful and thoughtful approach to teaching English to speakers of other languages. The professors involved in the TESOL program are experienced ESL/EFL teachers as well researchers who actively publish in international, peer-reviewed journals in the field. Finally, from a practical standpoint, the courses in the TESOL program are regularly offered at night in order to serve the needs of busy teachers working in the community.


Applicants to the TESOL Certificate Program must have a Bachelor's degree from an accredited institution, a GPA of 3.0 over the last two years of undergraduate coursework, and scores at or above the 35% on the verbal section of the GRE. Applicants whose first language is not English need to have a score of 21 on the listening section of the computer-based TOEFL test, with a composite score of 550/213, or a score of 84 on the MTELP, or a score of 6 on the IELTS. TESOL applications must include the Graduate School Application form, the Graduate School application fee, undergraduate and any graduate transcripts, GRE and/or TOEFL scores, three letters of recommendation, and a 500-word statement of purpose. All applicants, including those applying to or enrolled in the English MA or PhD, need to apply directly to the TESOL Certificate Program.

For more information about where to send application materials and application dates, see the Graduate Application Information page.


The certificate course consists of eighteen credit hours of graduate-level courses. There are four required core courses, including:

  • ENGL 680–Introduction to Linguistics
  • ENGL 681–Theory of Second Language Acquisition
  • ENGL 682–TESL Methodology
  • ENGL 783–Practicum in Second Language Teaching

In addition to these courses, students also take six graduate-level elective credits in Linguistics, selecting from offerings in English, Anthropology, or Education.

Complete course descriptions can be found under the Department of English and Philosophy offerings in the ISU Graduate Catalog.

Contact Information

For further information about the program, including admissions policies, please contact one of the directors listed below:

Dr. Brent Wolter, 208-282-2478
Dr. Sonja Launspach, 208-282-2478



921 South 8th Avenue
Pocatello, Idaho, 83209