English as a Second Language Specialist Certification (K-12): Robert Morris University English as a Second Language Specialist Certification (K-12) | Robert Morris University


This 18-credit fully online program is a collaboration between Robert Morris University and the Beaver Valley Intermediate Unit.  The program  prepares teachers to promote the academic success of English language learners, and prepares candidates for the ESL Program Specialist certificate awarded by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.  

Program Goals

RMU’s program in English as a Second Language explores culture, instructional planning, language benchmarks, assessment and professionalism.  It helps teachers be effective when working with families and communities to establish learning goals and assessment measures that are appropriate for the individual ELL student.  It also teaches how to conduct research on the structure and nature of language with a view to assisting their students to adjust to the challenges of learning a new language.  


Showing the interconnections of culture and cognition, the curriculum provides historical exploration of immigration, cultural perspectives, and teaching practices.  Candidates for ESL Certification complete a planned sequence of field experiences, of which at least one is in a public school setting, and which are aligned with competencies in the coursework.

All six courses are three credits, and each course progresses from introductory to higher level and known to unknown in complexity:

TESL6000  Introduction to Teaching English as a Second Language

TESL6010  Developing Cultural Awareness and Sensitivity

TESL6020  Observing, Planning, Implementing, and Managing Instruction

TESL6030  Language Acquisition and Development

TESL6040  Assessment and Support

TESL6050  English Language Learners, Families, Community, and Professionalism