Q: How long does the English as a Second Language (ESL) program take?

A: There are three components to this program:


  • the CSAT major (44 credits),
  • the Applied Linguistics Minor -- ESL track (18 credits), and
  • the Elementary Education Major (39 credits, completed in the College of Education)

These, in addition to the General Education requirements, will take full-time students at least 8 semesters, usually with 15 credits per semester; some semesters you may take 16 credits (overload).


How long it takes you to complete both majors will depend on several factors:

  • Whether you start the program with courses that either count towards the major or satisfy Gen. Ed. Requirements. Transfer students and those who change their majors may need additional time to complete all requirements. An advisor in the CLAS Advising Center can help you determine which courses you have already taken will satisfy major and/or General Education requirements.
  • How closely you follow the suggested pattern of coursework. Note that several courses have prerequisites, which in turn have their own prerequisites, so it’s important to get started on these sequences early and complete them in the right order. See the sheet displaying prerequisites and prerequisite sequences for courses in the CSAT major.


Q: Should I choose the Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) or Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in the CSAT program?

A:  The Michigan requirements for ESL require evidence of significant world language learning experience. Since this requirement is met by the B.A. degree requirement, students seeking ESL certification should select the B.A. option.


Q: What grade levels will I be certified to teach with an Elementary Education certification plus ESL endorsement?

A: The Elementary Ed. certification with ESL endorsement allows teachers to teach grades K-5 in a general elementary classroom (K-6 in elementary schools that have grade 6).  


Q: What can I teach with an Elementary teaching certification plus ESL endorsement?

A: This combination will allow you to teach grades K-5 in a general English-speaking classroom or a ESL classroom, or as a specialist teaching English to students for whom English is a second language in grades K-5.


Q: Can I combine the CSAT major with both the ESL minor and Spanish Elementary Ed. minor to get two endorsements? 

A: Yes, this is certainly possible, and it would likely be a very marketable combination. The additional 23 credits for the Spanish Elementary Ed. minor would add some time to completion of your program.


Q: What if I want to combine one of the core elementary subjects (Language Arts, Math, Integrated Science, or Social Studies) with the ESL minor?

A: That is possible, but it would require choosing a major in one of those areas, rather than the CSAT major, as well as completing the Elementary Teaching minor (31 credits).