(Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages)
Teacher Education Program

Tesol Class

The program is located in the Department of Linguistics and prepares undergraduate and graduate students to become teachers of English as a Second Language (ESL) in grades Pre-K-12. Students may become certified at the BA level or at the MA level. In addition, there is a new program that offers the accelerated BA/MA with certification as a five-year program. Students take courses in linguistics and Pedagogy, design and implement workshops to raise cross-cultural awareness and gain extensive practical experience in a variety of educational settings at the university and in the community. These include pre-schools, elementary, and secondary schools, museums, adult education, and college programs. This approach provides teacher candidates with the intellectual rigor of the academic discipline and the professional growth enhanced by immersion in authentic classroom contexts.

In recent years, the program has been the locus of change and innovation. Along with interweaving of diverse educational approaches, extensive collaborative endeavors with teacher preparation programs across disciplines, partnerships with schools and other educational settings, the pedagogical courses focus on the analysis of ELL student test data to inform curriculum and rigorous integration of technology. New courses, and external funding, have all strengthened the program, have enhanced its uniqueness, and have greatly enriched the professional growth of its graduates. These endeavors have been disseminated nationally and internationally and the program has become widely known for its innovative orientation in preparing teachers of students with linguistically and culturally diverse backgrounds. Alumni of the program are employed as teachers and coordinators of language programs in over 55 school districts and educational agencies on Long Island, in schools across New York State and in English language programs in countries around the globe.

This comprehensive program offers four (4) levels of course work:

  • An Undergraduate program leading to a NYS TESOL teaching certificate and a major in Linguistics
  • For those desirous of a NYS TESOL Teaching Certificate and a Linguistics M.A.
  • For those interested in a MA in Linguistics who may have an existing NYS Teaching Certificate and are desirous of applying to NYSED for an “Individual Evaluation for an Additional Classroom Certificate” or those planning to teach abroad.
  • For students seeking to earn a combined BA/MA degree which is specifically designed for students preparing for professional PreK-12 TESOL Teaching Certification and a M.A. in Linguistics.

Undergraduate students wishing to apply to the program must major in Linguistics and have a minimum GPA of 3.0.   Prospective applicants must consult with the Undergraduate Director in Linguistics and the Director of the TESOL Program as early as possible in their academic careers to ensure completion of the program requirements in a timely manner. The PEP Undergraduate Application form must be submitted to the Director of the TESOL Education Program by April 15 for Fall admission and by November 15 for Spring admission. Teacher candidates must also earn a C or better in all required education courses and an overall minimum GPA of 3.0 to qualify for student teaching. Exceptions are at the discretion of the program director. (for more detailed information, refer to the Guide For Teacher Education). For additional information, an Undergraduate PEP Application and/or Course Planner information, please click on the following:

Graduate Students wishing to apply to the program must first be admitted to the MA TESOL Program in the Linguistics Department and the Graduate School, before being admitted into the Professional Education Program (PEP).

Please note: Native speakers of English must provide evidence of at least one year (6 credits) of study of one language other than English at the college level with a grade of C or better to enter the program. A total of 12 credits of foreign language study is required to graduate the program.

Non-native speakers must provide TOEFL overall and speaking scores.

M.A. TESOL applications should be received by April 1 for international students and July 1 for domestic students.

For a Graduate School Application to the Linguistics program, please click on the following: TESOL Teacher Education Program - Graduate Application Form

There are two (2) pathways at the graduate level:

For those students who seek to earn both the M.A. in TESOL and an initial NYS TESOL Teaching Certification: This is a 48-credit program

For those students who currently have another NYS Teaching Certificate and want a TESOL extension, or, are not interested in obtaining a NYS Teaching Certificate: The 30-credit MA program is available. Additional information is available at the Linguistics Dept website. (

If you already have a NYS certification and your goal is to acquire an additional certification upon completion of the MA TESOL program, you must apply directly to NYS for "Individual Evaluation for an Additional Classroom Certificate" (Initial Certificate). The determination of your eligibility for the alternate route certification can only be made by the NYS evaluators, who will look at your transcripts and determine, on a case-by-case basis, which requirements you have met and what remains for you to do. The requirements and additional information may be found at: which is the official NYS Education Department website.

For students seeking to earn an accelerated BA/MA degree which is specifically designed for students preparing for professional PreK-12 TESOL Teaching Certification, this program allows students to earn the two degrees in one semester less than would be the case if students were to complete the programs sequentially.

ALL students, at either the BA or MA level, seeking NYS TESOL Certification must successfully complete all requirements set forth by Stony Brook University as well as New York State Education Department. This includes submitting and having an accepted edTPA Teacher Performance Assessment to New York State Education Department.

Please inform yourself of the requirements of this process through the edTPA portal

Please click on the following link for access to our
Guide to Teacher Education.

For further information contact:

Annette Shideler, Ed.D.
Interim Director of TESOL Teacher Education Program
Department of Linguistics
Stony Brook University
Stony Brook, NY 11794-4376
Phone: (631) 632-8003