written by: Leyla Norman•edited by: Noreen Gunnell•updated: 1/30/2011
A post grad certificate in English can help you get a job as an English teacher to students across the world or across town. Read about a few post grad certificate programs around the country to see if this option is right for you.
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A post grad certificate in English is one way to get your foot in the door in a career teaching English to speakers of other languages, although you usually need a Master’s degree in teaching English as a second language to do this. It will help you find a position overseas as well as a job teaching English to adults in the United States. If you have a teacher’s license, you can get an ESL endorsement from many of the same institutions that offer post grad certificates in teaching English. A post grad certificate will allow you to teach ESL to students in public schools.
A post grad certificate in English differs from TEFL/TESL/TESOL certificates that are offered by many independent organizations. These latter types of certificates often offer as few as 40 hours of instruction and may not provide any supervised, practical teaching experience. On the other hand, a post grad certificate in English may be an entire year or semester in length. They offer a supervised teaching component, and they are available from more reputable institutions than the shorter programs. They thus are more widely accepted by U.S.-based ESL instructor employers.
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Dozens of universities and colleges offer post grad certificates in English. The Front Range Community College system in Colorado, for example, offers a TESL certificate that is 15 hours in length. Students must demonstrate proficiency in English if they are not native English speakers. Tuition for an in-state student is $96.25 per credit hour.
Anderson University in Indiana offers an English certificate for those with a Bachelor’s degree (at least 2.75 GPA). The tuition is $315 per credit hour for in-state residents, and the program is 15 hours in length. It also offers a track for those who want an ESL endorsement for their teaching licenses. Central Connecticut State University also offers a post grad certificate in English for $3,270 per semester for in-state residents. The length of the program varies. Students must have at least a Bachelor’s degree with a 2.7 GPA to be accepted into the program. Students who are not native English speakers must have a 550 on the TOEFL exam to enroll.
Florida State University has an English certificate program that costs $218.76 per credit hour for in-state residents, and it is 12 hours in length. The program’s entry requirements are that students have a Bachelor’s degree (minimum 3.0 GPA during last two years of study), a minimum GRE score of 1000 and a 550 on the TOEFL exam if they are non-native English speakers.
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If you want to prepare for a career to teach students overseas, an independent certificate of at least 100 hours of instruction and some practical teaching experience will help you get a decent job. 40 hours is the minimum for most positions. However, if you want to teach students in the U.S., both adults and children, a post grad certificate in English is a better choice as the curriculum is more difficult and you will have a practicum to get the classroom experience necessary to be an effective teacher. Programs’ fees and entry requirements vary from institution to institution. Post grad certificates in English are also appropriate for those who want to know they are getting good training and who want to teach overseas.