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We have two teams to help you through the process.

General questions prior to applying can be directed to our Graduate Recruiters.

Once you have applied, questions about the application process should then be directed to our Graduate Processors.

Graduate Recruiters: Located in the Multidisciplinary Studies Building 4.01.52

Office Hours: 8 A.M. - 5 P.M.

Monday, Wendesday and Friday - virtual office hours
Tuesday and Thursday - in-person


Contact Us:

Email: Grad.Recruitment@utsa.edu
Phone: (210) 458-4331
Fax: (210) 458-4332

Book an appointment with a recruiter in-person or virtually .

Graduate Processors: Located in the Flawn Sciences Building 1.01.05

Office Hours: 8 A.M.–12 P.M.

Tuesday and Thursday - in-person


Contact Us:

Email: Graduate.admissions@utsa.edu
Phone: (210) 458-
Fax: (210) 458-

Send Official Transcripts to: graduate.documents@utsa.edu

Unofficial Transcripts and Other Documents for Spring 2022 can be Uploaded here! (requires UTSA
student ID in the form of abc123) if they have not been submitted as part of your application.

Unofficial Transcripts and Other Documents for Summer 2022 and Fall 2022 must be uploaded directly to the application.


Graduate Certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language

Basic Certificate Information

The CertTESL is a gateway to the English language teaching profession.* It provides you with the specialized training you need to begin a career in English language teaching in the US or abroad, explore a career change, add specialized training to current professional skills, or teach English in retirement. No prior training in language teaching or linguistics is required. Practical, hands-on courses offer you a general foundation in methods, techniques, and strategies for teaching English language learners of all ages. The program places a special emphasis on teaching English in multilingual settings, preparing you to offer socially responsible and linguistically appropriate lessons to help students develop strong intercultural communication skills.

*Note: The Certificate in TESL is not equivalent to teacher certification in ESL or bilingual education in Texas, although some courses may overlap. Individuals interested in teacher certification should consult with the College of Education and Human Development about teacher certification programs.

Students enrolled in the Master of Arts in Teaching English as a Second Language degree cannot concurrently be enrolled in the Graduate Certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language program.

Program Options

The CertTESL consists of 15 credit hours (five graduate courses), which you may take at your own pace. The certificate can be completed as quickly as within a calendar year. The program of study includes three fundamental courses that all participants take: Foundations in Second Language Acquisition, Listening and Speaking in Second Language Programs, and Internship in English as a Second Language. In addition, you can tailor the certificate to meet your specific career goals by choosing among a wide variety of courses in two areas: language teaching methods and literacy.

Courses that are part of the certificate program include the following:

  • Approaches to Second Language Instruction (ESL 5053)
  • Foundations in Second Language Acquisition (ESL 5013)
  • Computer Assisted Language Learning (ESL 5073)
  • Listening and Speaking in Second Language Programs (ESL 5043)
  • Second Language Reading and Writing (ESL 5033)
  • Family and Adult Literacy in Language Minority Communities (ESL 6043)
  • Internship in English as a Second Language (ESL 6943)

Admission Requirements and Prerequisites

Bachelor's degree with 18 credit hours in field of study or in another appropriate field of study.

Application Requirements:
 General University Requirements Must meet certificate program regulations.
 Application A completed Graduate School application, unless currently enrolled as a degree-seeking graduate student.
 Transcripts Official transcripts from all institutions attended. All international transcripts must be recorded in English or officially translated to English.
 Resume or Curriculum Vitae Not required.
 Letters of Recommendation Not required.
 Statement of Purpose Not required.
 Test Scores If GPA is less than a 3.0 a GRE may be required.
 Evaluation of Foreign Credentials

All applicants including non-U.S. citizens (International), U.S. Citizens, and permanent residents who have earned university-level credit from foreign institutions are required to submit official transcripts along with an evaluation of the transcripts from Foreign Credentials Service of America

  • An approved evaluation requires a detailed course-by-course evaluation. Summaries will not be accepted.
  • Foreign credential evaluations must be received by the application deadline for your application to be processed.
  • Foreign Credentials Service of America in Austin, TX is the only accepted evaluation agency. They can be reached at (512) 459-8429, info@foreigncredentials.org, or online at https://www.foreigncredentials.org/our-services/apply-now/.
  • If you need a request form, please visit the FCSA website to access the form here.
Must meet international graduate student admission requirements
  • IELTS: Minimum score of 6.5.
  • TOEFL: Minimum scores of 79 or 60 for Internet or paper versions, respectively.
 Other None.

Career Options Available

As transnational migration and international trade expands worldwide so does the need for people to learn English skills for intercultural communication. As a result, there is high demand for people with basic training to teach English. Completion of the certificate prepares you to work in areas such as:

  • Community-based language programs for immigrants and refugees
  • Private language schools abroad
  • Corporate training/consulting
  • International aid work
  • Tutoring learners of English

Contact Information

Student Development Specialist: Eric Uriegas
Email Address: eric.uriegas@utsa.edu
Telephone: (210) 458-6619

Graduate Advisor of Record: Martha Sidury Christiansen, Ph.D.
Email: marthasidury.christiansen@utsa.edu
Telephone: (210) 458-6619

Degree Catalog Link: http://catalog.utsa.edu/graduate/educationhumandevelopment/biculturalbilingualstudies/

Degree Website: Learn more about this program here.

Funding Opportunities

All students interested in financial aid should fill out the FASFA (Free Application for Federal Student Assistance). Students may also be interested in Graduate Assistantship positions available within the College. Typically, these assistantships are 19 hours per week.

Scholarships are also available to Graduate Students:

Students who are pursuing a certificate as special graduate students will not be eligible for financial aid.

Course Scheduling and Offerings

  • Courses are offered in the evenings (6 PM to 8:45 PM) to fit the schedules of working professionals.
  • Daytime courses are available in the summer
  • This program is housed on the UTSA Main Campus.