Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages and Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TESOL & TEFL)

Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages and Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TESOL & TEFL)

Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages and Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TESOL & TEFL)

Classroom Program


3-6 months


UCR Extension

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Gain the training and knowledge to teach English anywhere in the world. Learn theories and techniques for teaching skills like speaking, listening, reading, writing, and grammar. Apply your new skills and strategies to real students in your ESL/EFL Student Teaching class. Then take your certificate abroad and pursue teaching opportunities. Later, transition into our advanced certificate or a Master's program at one of our three partner universities.

Whether you are a new or experienced teacher, this program can help you develop and refine your skills for teaching English-language learners.You'll start by learning about the fundamentals of teaching an ESL/EFL class. As you progress,  you'll  observe and analyze actual classroom lessons, and become skilled in pacing, classroom management and other core concepts of teaching. Through constructive feedback from both peers and instructors throughout the program, you will gain an abundance of support and useful tips to help you blossom into a successful teacher.As you close your program, you'll reflect on your learning by building a teaching  portfolio, and you'll be ready to teach and inspire English-language learners all over the world.

This program is designed for all types of students: busy undergraduates, adventurous international students, and working professionals. The flexible format offers face-to-face, online, and hybrid courses. Course meetings are conveniently schedules in the evenings and on the weekends.You can complete the program in the minimum time of three months, or you can extend your program for a period of up to five years. 

Designed For

Individuals looking to teach English as a second language.

New teachers interested in teaching English abroad.

Experienced teachers interested in adding a certificate to their resumes.

Students applying to the UCR Master's in Education (emphasis in TESOL), or interested in getting transferrable units to a Master's in TESOL or Education.

What You'll Learn

  • How to evaluate students, materials, and teaching contexts to determine the best approaches for teaching.
  • Ways to apply knowledge of linguistics, language acquisition, English grammar, and teaching methods to real teaching scenarios.
  • Methods for creating activities and lesson plans that reflect current and effective approaches to teaching ESL/EFL.
  • How to deliver effective lesson plans through practice teaching events with peers, tutees, and real students.
  • How to critically reflect on teaching events and complete a professional teaching portfolio.

What You Can Do With This Certificate

Find positions teaching English as a second language are available in a variety of classrooms all over the world, or online.

Transfer graduate-level units to a Master's degree program in Education or TESOL, and get an advanced degree.

Real People. Real Results.

“The experience I gained from the TESOL Professional Certificate Program turned out to be a significant life event. The program instructors were A+. They transferred their enthusiasm for teaching to me, and I still carry that enthusiasm each day. I am very grateful to the program for expanding my opportunities to help others.”

Dwight E. Russell

Upland, CA

Earning the Certificate

Prior to enrolling, please ensure that you meet the following minimum requirements:

  • High school diploma
  • 18 years of age or older
  • International students and/or non-native English speakers:
    • 80 TOEFL iBT
      • OR 550 PBT
      • OR 6.5 IELTS
      • OR equivalent.
  • Recommended:
    • Advanced academic writing skills
    • Advanced knowledge of English grammar
    • Undergraduate degree or college experience.
  • Completion Requirements: Achieve a grade of C or better in order to pass a class. For graduate-level courses, participants must achieve a grade of B or better in order to transfer the credit to a Master's degree program.
  • Graduation Requirements:
    • Successful completion of all TESOL coursework with a minimum GPA of 3.0.

Classes in this program offer early enrollment discounts of $50. Enroll early and save up to $250 on the price of the program.

For more information see How to Earn a Certificate

Certificate Courses

Our certificate programs are designed to be flexible, allowing you the option to take just a few courses or to earn the complete certificate. If choosing to complete the certificate, we recommend you get the most out of your experience by following the suggested completion path below.

Quarter 1

Foundations of TESOL

EDUC X331.01

3 units

TESOL Orientation

EDUC 804.O

English Grammar Structure and Methods


3 units

Frameworks and Methods for TESOL

EDUC X425.01

2 units

Language and Linguistics


3 units


Quarter 2

TESOL Portfolio

EDUC X331.2

1 units

ESL/EFL Student Teaching

EDUC X331.4

1 units

Instructor Spotlight

“One of the best aspects of our TESOL program is the practical knowledge that students learn. I am confident my students are learning valuable skills and methods they can use in any classroom in any country all over the world.”

Christine Tsai-Taing

ESL and TESOL Instructor
Riverside, CA

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