Dec 10, 2023  
2017-2018 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog 
2017-2018 Undergraduate and Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

English as a Second Language (ESL) Program Specialist Certificate

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The Program

The ESL Program Specialist Certificate is designed to demonstrate that candidates have completed a competency-based sequence of courses totaling 16 credit hours and a minimum of 60 clinical field experience hours.  The ESL Program Specialist Certificate provides a level of skills, specific training and experiences for professionals who provide ESL educational services for the growing population of second language (L2) students in a K-12 public/charter school education environment. The program will allow professional educators holding this certificate to address the complex needs of students who are acquiring English as a second language in various classroom and school settings. Education professionals achieving this certificate will demonstrate competencies related to, second language acquisition, instruction, culture/diversity, research-based assessment and program management for ELL students.

The ESL Program Specialist Certificate will be applicable for those professionals serving students across all English language proficiency levels.  We recognize there are other professionals who provide related services to individuals in school and community settings that will be interested in acquiring further training in teaching English to second language learners.

Admission Requirements

Candidates for the ESL Program Specialist Certification program must have a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited US College/university and have an Instructional I or II PA teaching certificate. Candidates must complete the following materials for consideration of acceptance to the program:

  •  Application and $30 non-refundable application fee payable to Saint Francis University, 
  •  Two letters of professional recommendation, 
  •  A minimum undergraduate and/or graduate grade point average of 3.0 or higher is required, 
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate course work completed,
  • Copy of Instructional I or II PDE certificate.

Transfer credit policy

Students may transfer up to six hours of graduate credits from another college or university. Students must submit this request in writing along with a course description and official transcript from the college or university attended. Any requests for transfer credits must be graduate level credits. Review entire policy at

ESL Course Requirements

  • EDUC537 Understanding Language and Second Language Acquisition
  • EDUC538 Culturally Diverse Learners: Socio-cultural Aspects of Language
  • EDUC539 Second Language Teaching: Methods and Materials I
  • EDUC540 Assessment and Evaluation in Second Language Teaching (4 credits)
  • EDUC562 Second Language Teaching: Methods and Materials II

Certification Requirements 

PDE Certificate - Students must have successfully completed all requirements of the program prior to completing the TIMS online application for approval. There is a fee to add this specialist certificate to an already existing Instructional certificate; to be paid to PDE.

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