Teaching English as a Foreign Language


Effective 1 June 2024 through 31 May 2025

Please see the Graduate Catalog Archives for PDF versions of past catalogs.

Graduate Certificate
21 Credit Hours

This program is offered by the College of Humanities and Social Sciences. It is available online, at the St. Louis main campus and at select international campuses. Please see the Campus Locations and Offerings section of this catalog for a list of campuses where this program is offered.

For information on the general requirements for a certificate, see Certificate Program Policies and Procedures under the Academic Policies section of this catalog.

Program Description

All students pursuing the Webster certificate in teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL) will be considered degree-seeking students and will have the option to pursue the MA in teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) with an emphasis in ESL/EFL education within 5 years from the start of their TESOL coursework.

See also:

Learning Outcomes

Program Goals – The TEFL Certificate shares the same seven core courses required of all MA in TESOL students, and these seven courses have been aligned to address a set of five standards developed by specialists in coordination with the organization Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages. These standards are known as the TESOL Standards. The five learning outcomes below are assessed through a series of summative assessments at the end of each of these core courses.

  • Students will be able to describe the relevant features of language that learners need to acquire (TESOL Standard 1 - Knowledge About Language)
  • Students will be able to describe the academic and personal characteristics of language learners and educators in order to determine culturally relevant instructional choices (TESOL Standard 2 - Sociocultural Context of Learners and Teachers)
  • Students will be able to design and implement standards-based instruction using evidence-based strategies and approaches (TESOL Standard 3 - Planning and Implementing Instruction)
  • Students will be able to analyze and interpret various language assessment tools and data in order to strengthen language instruction and/or content instruction through the target language (TESOL Standard 4 - Assessment and Evaluation)
  • Students will be able to model and reflect upon professionalism and leadership in language instruction, collaboration, and advocacy (TESOL Standard 5 - Professionalism and Leadership)

Required Courses

21 credit hours

  • TESL 5030 Linguistics for Language Learning and Teaching* (3 hours)
  • TESL 5230 Theories of Foreign and Second Language Acquisition* (3 hours)
  • TESL 5139 Instructional Methods for Language Classrooms* (3 hours)
  • TESL 5220 Lesson Planning and Curriculum Development for Language Classrooms* (3 hours)
  • TESL 5311 Language Assessment* (3 hours)
  • TESL 5350 Sociolinguistics*  (3 hours)
  • Three credit hours of Practicum selected from:
    • TESL 5040 Practicum in English Language Classrooms (taken at the end of the program)* (1-3 hours)
    • TESL 5041 Tutoring in English (1 hour)
    • TESL 5042 Initial Practicum in English Language Classrooms (1 hour)

*Course contains a summative assessment for data collection purposes.


See the Admission section of this catalog for general admission requirements. Students interested in applying must submit their application online at Transcripts should be sent from your institution electronically to If this service is not available, send transcripts to:

Office of Admission
Webster University
470 E. Lockwood Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63119 

Additional Requirements

Requirements for admission to the teaching English as a foreign language certificate program include:

  • Undergraduate cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher.
  • Receipt of official transcripts from the baccalaureate-granting institution.