TESOL: Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

Certificate of Graduate Study in English as a Second Language

The Certificate of Graduate Study in English as a Second Language is designed to accommodate teachers, educational technicians, and other holders of baccalaureate degrees who do not want to complete all of the requirements for a master's degree but who wish to obtain foundational knowledge in English language learning. Students who complete the certificate program receive official transcript recognition of their work and a certificate from the Literacy, Language, and Culture programs. Certificate completers are able to plan effective instruction for English language learners and may earn state endorsement in ESL if other requirements are met (hold provisional or professional teaching license, pass Praxis II ESOL exam).

Total Required Credits: 15

  • EDU 557 Teaching Writing to Multilingual Learners or
  • EDU 558 Content-Based Curriculum for English Language Learners
  • EDU 559 Aspects of Reading for Multilingual Learners
  • EDU 561 Aspects of the English Language
  • EDU 562 Linguistic and Cultural Diversity
  • EDU 563 ESL Testing and Assessment

Applicant Qualifications

Criteria for admission include successful completion of a bachelor's degree and an interest in English language learning. To earn a certificate, students must complete 75 percent of the required coursework at USM, and earn a grade of B (3.0) or better in each course.

Application Procedures and Required Materials

Application Deadline: Rolling

Applicants are required to provide the following materials: 

  • Application: Online Application
  • Application fee: $25.00 paid through the online application.
  • Transcripts: Official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended, excluding the seven campuses of the University of Maine System (UMS transcripts are accessible to USM). A transcript is official when sent directly from the institution.
    • International College transcripts: In addition to an official copy of the transcript, an official evaluation of college-level transcripts from a NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services) approved transcript analysis agency is required
  • Resume: Submit a resume or CV that outlines professional, volunteer, and community experience.
  • Personal statement
  • TOEFL or IELTS: Students whose first language is not English are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and submit official scores as part of the application process. See additional information below regarding test scores.

International Applicants

In addition to the standard application materials, international students must also provide the following materials:

  • College transcript evaluation: official course-by-course evaluation of college-level transcripts from a NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services) approved transcript analysis agency
  • Declaration of Finances form accompanied by the appropriate financial documentation
  • International students whose first language is not English are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and submit official scores as part of the application process. Only applicants with TOEFL scores of 79 or higher on the internet-based test 550 or higher on the paper-based test, or 213 or higher on the computer-based test; or IELTS scores of 6.5 or higher will be considered for admission to a graduate program.

Applicants whose first language is not English

Students whose first language is not English are required to take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) and submit official scores as part of the application process. Only applicants with TOEFL scores of 79 or higher on the internet-based test, 550 or higher on the paper-based test, or 213 or higher on the computer-based test; or IELTS scores of 6.5 or higher will be considered for admission to a graduate program.

Where to send transcripts and application materials

Official transcripts and other supporting documents can be sent to:

Application Processing Center
University of Maine System
P.O. Box 412
Bangor, ME 04402-0412

Colleges and universities that participate in electronic submission of transcripts can send official transcripts to edocs@maine.edu. Resumes, essays, and other documents can also be sent to edocs@maine.edu.

For a transcript or recommendation to be considered official, it must be sent by the institution or the person writing the recommendation

Acceptance to a certificate program does not constitute acceptance to a master's or post-master's certificate of advanced study program. Applications for degree status must be made under separate cover.