If you’re passionate about intercultural communication and want the credentials to teach English anywhere in the world, a degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) may be the right fit for you. Teaching English to refugees and immigrants in the U.S., or to individuals overseas, is a means of serving diverse populations, in the name of Christ, to help them achieve academic success, get better jobs and master a new skill.
Although English language learners in the classes you teach will come from different backgrounds, they share a need for informed, compassionate and effective teachers who can understand the challenges they face. With a degree in TESOL from Concordia University, Nebraska, you’ll gain the diverse instructional techniques, culturally responsive teaching practices and a strong foundation in second language acquisition that can make an enormous difference in your students’ educational experiences and their lives.
The TESOL program at Concordia Nebraska is specifically designed for non-education majors, preparing you to teach English as a second language internationally or in adult ESL programs in universities, refugee centers or community centers in the United States. You’ll build an understanding of the foundations of English language instruction in both English as a second language and English as a foreign language contexts as well as bilingual education, including current theories of second language acquisition, linguistic analysis and the role culture plays in second language teaching. You’ll also be able to supplement your classroom learning with real-world, hands-on experiences teaching English to speakers of other languages in programs both in the U.S. and abroad.
Faculty with terminal degree
TESOL opens my mind to how other cultures live and learn a language, and it opens doors for me to work with a wide diversity of people.
With a degree in TESOL from Concordia University, Nebraska, you’ll be equipped to teach English as a second language. You might work in public or private schools or programs in the United States, teaching English to adult or child immigrants. You might work internationally, helping students learn English in international schools or after-school programs or camps. TESOL careers are also available in nonprofit organizations and in the government sector, as an English tutor or developing language materials for schools.
You don’t need to be fluent in another language in order to teach English to speakers of other languages. In fact, in the classroom, you generally will only speak English to immerse your students in the English language, which will help them learn much more quickly. However, it might be helpful to learn a few phrases, such as “hello,” “sit down” or “quiet, please.”
As you work inside and outside the classroom, you’ll probably learn more phrases, especially if you’re teaching in a foreign country. Struggling to learn the native language of your students will help you become a better TESOL teacher, as you’ll be able to understand what your students are going through and develop strategies for language learning that you can teach them.
Concordia University, Nebraska offers TESOL majors many opportunities for short-term mission trips and study abroad to places Europe, Latin America, Africa and Asia, including weeks in the summer for teaching English in China and Hong Kong. You can try out your language skills and become immersed in a rich, new culture. If you want to experience a longer overseas adventure, you can also teach English at Lutheran international or Christian schools in places like Hong Kong, Shanghai, Eastern Europe or Latin America. TESOL students have also gained summer internship and practicum experience in Africa, Asia, eastern Europe and Latin America.
Locally, you can gain valuable TESOL field experience in local schools, immigrant outreach ministries and at either the Lutheran Chapel or the People’s City Mission in Lincoln. This exposure gives you a chance to practice your teaching and language skills and also equips you to be ministers of the Gospel.
Concordia Association of Students in Education (CASE) is a helpful, informative and exciting organization for any aspiring TESOL major. Beyond meeting with other education students, listening to speakers and serving in the community, CASE sponsors multicultural trips each year to Lincoln and Omaha working with children to teach English as a second language in after-school and weekend classroom programs.
To prepare to teach English as a second language overseas, you’ll need a TESOL diploma and classroom experience either in the form of actual teaching, conversation hours or working with international students in a specific program. In addition, having international experience, whether work or just travel, is a huge plus because it demonstrates to prospective employers that you have survived being overseas already. You can receive all of these things through Concordia University, Nebraska’s TESOL program.
Your salary as an ESL teacher will depend on where you teach, both what kind of organization it is and where you’re located geographically. However, the average annual salary for all TESOL majors, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, is $40,520.
The TESOL program at Concordia University, Nebraska prepares competent, caring, inclusive and proactive TESOL professional educators who make a difference in their students’ lives. Graduates of the TESOL program are also equipped to present the Gospel, particularly in countries where traditional missionaries and church workers have trouble gaining access.
Concordia NebraskaTESOL: Learning Objectives
Students in the TESOL program at Concordia University, Nebraska will understand the structure of the English language (phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics and discourse).
Students will gain knowledge of first and second language development and the development of bilingualism and multilingualism.
Students will be able to use a wide range of assessment tools for including informal/formal, individual/group, formative/summative instruments.
Students will learn to be skillful in a wide range of instructional materials, approaches and methods for learners at different stages of development and from differing cultural and linguistic backgrounds.
Students will design, implement and assess K-12, post-secondary and community programs focused on multicultural language and literacy education in English.
Concordia NebraskaTESOL: Program Goals
Students in the TESOL program at Concordia University, Nebraska will demonstrate understanding of language as a system and use that knowledge to support ELLs as they acquire English language and literacy in order to achieve in the content areas.
Students will understand and use major concepts, principles, theories and research related to the nature and role of culture and cultural groups to construct supportive learning environments for ELLs.
Students will use evidence-based practices and strategies related to planning, implementation and management of standards-based ESL and content instruction.
Students will be able to implement a variety of standards-based teaching strategies and techniques for developing and integrating the English language skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing.
Concordia Nebraska TESOL: Career Outcomes
Curriculum developers are highly-trained educational professionals who create instructional materials that teachers use in the classroom to facilitate student learning. As a TESOL curriculum developer, you would evaluate teachers’ instruction, analyze education standards and implement curriculum for your school, ESL program or global ministries organization.
English as a Second Language Teacher
ESL teachers instruct students whose first language isn’t English in reading, writing and conversing effectively. When you teach English to speakers of other languages, you help your students approach the English language from a real-life perspective, generally focusing on conversational or job-related communication skills.
TESOL program administrators plan, implement and evaluate courses offered by ESL programs in schools or other organizations. As a TESOL administrator, you would function as a leader and manager, overseeing teachers, establishing long-term objectives and helping your organization thrive and grow.
Concordia NebraskaTESOL: Related Programs
Middle Level Education
The middle level education program at Concordia Nebraska connects theory with practice to prepare graduates to teach grades 5 through 9 in both self-contained and departmentalized classrooms. As a middle level education major, you will choose from among math, science, social sciences and language arts and have the opportunity to add a second subject from those or Spanish, physical education and ELL/ESL, allowing your passion for teaching to connect with your subject-area passions, which you can share with your students.
With its emphasis on communication for real-world purposes, the Spanish program at Concordia University, Nebraska will prepare you for graduate studies, professional school or a career in a number of fields. Our small classes and personalized attention mean you get the most from your education.
World and Intercultural Studies
The world and intercultural studies program at Concordia is a 48 hour cross-disciplinary major designed for students with interests in international service, communication, world missions, language or cultural studies. World and intercultural studies can be an effective stand-alone major, or you can choose to pair it with majors or minors in business, communication, sociology, theology and more so you can combine your passions and find the career that best suits you.
1 Recent graduates attending graduate school or employed within six months of graduation.
2 Career salary and wages sourced from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.