TESOL: Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

Frequently Asked Questions

A University of Southern Maine student with a group of elementary school children.Our TESOL program is dedicated to promoting equity and inclusivity for English language learners (ELLs).  We welcome graduate students of all backgrounds, including culturally and linguistically diverse students as well as ELLs.

Our program offers individual courses as well as degree and certificate programs for both pre-service and in-service teachers.

If you don’t see any answer to your question below, please contact us.

Are there online programs I can complete from my home country?

You can complete the following programs fully online:


I would like to study in America. Which programs are offered on campus?

You can complete the following programs on our campus in Maine:

  • MSEd in TESOL: This program can be completed online or through a blend of online and on-campus courses. Learn more about our blended program.
  • MSEd in TESOL — Initial K-12 Certification: This program can be completed through a blend of online and on-campus courses. Learn more.
  • Certificate of Advanced Study in English as a Second Language: This post-master’s program can be completed through a blend of online and on-campus courses. Learn more.


What scholarships and other financial resources are available for international students?


Where can I find information about applying to the University?

  • Our Office of Admissions provides step-by-step guides for international students applying to the University. Get started.


Where can I find the admission requirements for each program?

Is the GRE required?

  • Our masters and certificate programs do not require the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) for admission.


Is the Praxis Exam required?

  • Our MSEd in TESOL options and certificate programs do not require Praxis Core Exam scores for admission.


Where can I find the admission requirements for each program?

Can I take classes before enrolling in a program?

  • Many of our graduate students take just one class at a time to advance their education in working with linguistically and culturally diverse students, and/or to earn CEUs. 
    • Use our Course Search to find courses available for registration.
    • If you would like to look further into the future, you can view our Course Plan to see what courses will be offered in upcoming semesters. 
    • It is possible to transfer credits from completed courses toward a degree or certificate program. Some restrictions may apply. Please contact us to learn more.


I’d like to earn my Certificate of Graduate Study now and pursue the MSEd in TESOL in the future. Can I transfer my certificate credits toward the master’s degree?

Can I obtain initial teacher certification through your programs?


Can I obtain ESL endorsement through your programs?

What Praxis Exam is required?

  • Our MSEd in TESOL and certificate programs do not require Praxis Core Exam.

Which programs are offered online?

  • Each of our degree and certificate programs includes online courses. Some programs are fully online and some are blended, with a mix of online and on-campus courses.
  • You can complete the following programs fully online:


How long does it take to complete the program?


Where can I find a course schedule?

  • Use our Course Search to find courses available for registration.
  • If you like to look further into the future, you can view our Course Plan to see what courses will be offered in upcoming semesters. 
  • For the fully online MSEd in TESOL, launch the Maine Online site to learn more about the course schedule.

Will this program prepare me to teach English as a second/foreign language?

  • Yes. Our program focuses on both practice and research, which means you’ll be prepared to serve as a multicultural educator whose praxis is informed by theory.
  • We offer degrees and certificates for both pre-service and in-service teachers. Learn more.


I’d like to take a course but I don't want to enroll in a degree or certificate program. Where can I find more information about individual courses?

Do your online programs offer reduced tuition for out-of-state and international students?

  • For online learners, the University offers a low e-tuition rate to non-residents of Maine that is less than the standard out-of-state tuition. Maine residents benefit from the lower in-state tuition.
  • The following TESOL programs offer reduced e-tuition to out-of-state and international students:
    • MSEd in TESOL: This program is offered two formats — fully online and through a blend of online and on-campus courses.
      • Fully online: Students who are admitted to the fully online program format are eligible for a competitive tuition rate. Launch the Maine Online site to learn more about the fully online program format.
      • Blended: Out-of-state students are eligible for reduced e-tuition. Learn more.
    • Certificate of Graduate Study


Are there scholarships and financial aid available?

  • Yes. The University offers a number of graduate student scholarships in addition to financial aid packages. Learn more about scholarships and financial aid.


Are there graduate assistantship positions available?

  • Yes. Our Office of Graduate Studies coordinates more than 100 graduate assistantships each year. Learn more about graduate assistantships.