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English as a Second Language (ESL)

English as a Second Language (ESL) Concentration and ESL and Bilingual Endorsements

Kendall College’s English as a Second Language (ESL) concentration and ESL and bilingual endorsements are designed for those who wish to work with children whose primary language is one other than English. The coursework can prepare you with the skills necessary to guide and assess a growing population of diverse learners. And, depending on which path you choose, you can also prepare to add an ESL or bilingual endorsement to your teaching license.

ESL and Bilingual Endorsements are for School of Education students who are seeking licensure or are already licensed teachers. Students who wish to become qualified to teach in an ESL or bilingual classroom are required to have an ESL or a bilingual endorsement added to their teaching license. In addition to the ESL concentration coursework, students pursuing either endorsement will take two more courses and can learn to:

  • Examine instructional pedagogy for CLD learners in a culturally responsive school system.
  • Study how supportive learning environments are built.
  • Identify barriers, benefits, and techniques for working with outside groups to support CLD learners.

Students pursuing a bilingual endorsement must also pass a language proficiency test through the Illinois Licensure Testing System.

The Illinois State Board of Education requires that by July 1, 2014, preschool teachers who provide native language/ English as a Second Language (ESL) instruction to English Language Learner students must hold the ESL or bilingual endorsement or approval that corresponds with the teaching assignment. For more information call the Illinois State Board of Education, Division of Educator Certification, at 217-557-6763.

Course Requirements:

Required Coursework for ConcentrationCredits
SOE 260 Language Acquisition and Development 4
ESL 336 Theoretical Foundations of Teaching Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners 4
ESL 337 Assessing the Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learner 4
ESL 420 Methods and Materials for Teaching Culturally and Linguistically 5
ESL 330 Cross-Cultural Studies for Teaching Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners 5
ESL 427 Methods and Materials for Bilingual Students 5

SOE 260—Language Acquisition and Development
(4 credits)
Required field experience: 2 hours
This course focuses on language acquisition, development, and communication skills—typical and atypical—in young children from infancy through third grade. Observations and readings concentrate on the theories of and influences on how humans acquire and develop language and early reading and writing skills. The course gives an overview of the stages of oral and written language development and discusses current thinking with regard to bilingualism. Special attention is given to the impact of culture and environment on language development.
Prerequisite: EDU 222 or permission of the advisor

ESL 336—Theoretical Foundations of Teaching Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners
(4 credits)
Required field experience: 10 hours
This course provides an overview of the approaches, methodologies, current research, and strategies in cognitive development related to effective ESL and bilingual education. Through observations and learning, students study the history, main concepts, underlying principles, definitions and distinctions, ethical considerations, theories, political and ideological perspectives of ESL and bilingual education. They also come to understand the role language development and language learning play in acquiring English.
Prerequisites: All 100-200 level courses

ESL 337—Assessing the Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learner
(4 credits)
Required field experience: 15 hours
This course addresses the issues and challenges of assessing the culturally and linguistically diverse learner (CLD) in both content area learning, and language and acculturation. It presents techniques including standardized tests, authentic assessment (portfolios, performance, projects), use of technology, informal assessments, teacher-created assessments, interviews, criterion referenced assessments, observations, rubrics, checklists, and self-assessments to help prepare educators for assessment of the CLD learner. Applying data to instructional planning is also covered.
Prerequisites: All 100-200 level courses

ESL 420—Methods and Materials for Teaching Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students
(5 credits)
Required field experience: 25 hours
This course explores the multiple dimensions of teaching culturally and linguistically diverse learners by examining research-based instructional methods and strategies. Using the constructivist approach, relevant program models, and best practices will be investigated in an attempt to build the foundation for a supportive learning environment. Lesson plans will be developed in alignment with corresponding learning standards and the unique needs of the CLD learner.
Prerequisites: All 100-200 level courses

ESL 330—Cross-Cultural Studies for Teaching Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners
(5 credits)
Required field experience: 25 hours
This course examines instructional pedagogy for culturally and linguistically diverse learners in a culturally responsive school system. Through readings and research, students investigate social, cultural, and educational influences on students and identify the benefits, barriers, and techniques involved with establishing and fostering relationships with families, communities, and other resources to support CLD learners.
Prerequisites: All 100-200 level courses

ESL 427—Methods and Materials for Bilingual Students
(5 credits)
Required field experience: 25 hours
This course uses the constructivist approach to examine methods and techniques for teaching in the bilingual setting. Students address instructional needs and assessment strategies of the culturally and linguistically diverse learner through lesson planning in alignment with relevant learning standards, and study the building of supportive learning environments using communication skills, technology, and best practices.
Prerequisites: All 100-200 level courses and ESL 336