Graduate Certificate in Language Education

The Graduate Certificate in Language Education is designed for individuals seeking advanced professional preparation to increase knowledge and skills in working with language learners in the P-6 setting. Those who teach languages in public or private settings, both in the United States and abroad, may enhance their knowledge and practice by completing this standards-based program.

English as a Second Language (ESL) and Culturally Sustaining Pedagogy Concentration

The ESL concentration is for candidates who are seeking one of the following:

  1. Institutional Recommendation for an English as a Second Language (ESL) endorsement on a current teacher certificate or
  2. Advanced preparation in ESL for increasing professional performance in community programs.

Admission Requirements

  1. Satisfy the Admission Requirements for Graduate Certificates.
  2. Document professional background (must hold or be eligible to hold a teacher certificate from the State of Alaska.)
  3. Provide a minimum of three letters of recommendation addressing the candidate’s potential for program success.
  4. Submit a current resume.
  5. Submit a writing sample including an educational goal statement directly related to the certification program.

Background Check Requirements

See School of Education Field Placements.

Graduation Requirements

Program Requirements

This program includes courses delivered by distance. Admitted students must have the technological knowledge and skills to engage in distance learning.

Complete a minimum of 18 credits beyond the baccalaureate degree including:

EDFN A621Culture, Language and Literacy3
EDFN A645Culturally Sustaining Literacy for P-6 English Language Learners3
EDFN A646Culturally Sustaining Instruction in Science, Technology Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) f3
EDFN A689Action Research Experience: Culturally Sustaining Pedagogy for English Language Learners in P-6 Clas1-6
EDFN A691Current Topics in Second Language Education3
EDSY A668Teaching English as a Second Language in Secondary Schools3
Total Credits16-21

Meet the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Standards for ESL teachers. This may require students to take additional credits beyond the minimum of 18 required for a graduate certificate.

Maintain an overall GPA of 3.00 in the program with no more than one C in a required course.

As with all graduate certificates in the School of Education, coursework applied to the certificate may apply to the MEd with faculty advisor approval.

Institutional Recommendation

Following are the requirements for an institutional recommendation for an ESL endorsement:

  1. Professional Teacher Certificate or equivalent.
  2. Completion of all program requirements as indicated above.

Alaska Certification Note

The State of Alaska Department of Education and Early Development (EED) in Juneau awards endorsements. Graduates must meet all requirements specified by EED at the time of application for the endorsement.

Program Student Learning Outcomes

The student outcomes for this concentration are based on the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), and World-Class Instructional Design and Assessment (WIDA) standards. More information about these standards may be found at and Students who complete the Graduate Certificate in Language Education with a concentration in English as a Second Language and Culturally Sustaining Pedagogy will:

  • Demonstrate understanding of language as a system and demonstrate a high level of competence in helping language learners acquire and use the new language in speaking, reading and writing for social and academic purposes.
  • Understand and apply concepts, theories, research and practice to facilitate the acquisition of a primary and a new language in and out of classroom settings.
  • Know, understand and use the major concepts, principles, theories and research related to the nature and role of culture in language development and academic achievement that support an individual student’s learning and apply this knowledge to improve teaching and learning.
  • Know, understand and use knowledge of how cultural groups and students’ cultural identities affect language learning and school achievement.
  • Know, understand and apply concepts from research to plan instruction in a supportive learning environment for language learners.
  • Understand various issues of measurement (e.g., equity; cultural and linguistic bias; and political, social, and psychological factors) in assessment, IQ and special education testing; the importance of standards; and the difference between language proficiency and other types of assessment.
  • Serve as a professional advocate and resource for language learners and the community.