In January, Heidelberg University unrolled a flexible new online learning opportunity for teachers. Now, the School of Education has added another option to the program. After receiving approval from the Ohio Department of Higher Education, Heidelberg now is offering coursework for TESOL (Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages) certification.
The TESOL certification is being added to online classes that offer two other options for teachers: endorsement in K-12 reading and addition of grades 4 and 5 to a current Early Childhood Education pre-K through grade 3 teaching license, according to Dr. Robert Swanson, associate dean and director of the School of Education.
Endorsement in TESOL prepares practicing teachers to meet the learning needs of English language learners and students with limited English proficiency, a fast-growing population of school-aged children. In 2010-11, there were more than 39,000 such students in Ohio’s elementary and secondary schools.
TESOL coursework consists of four three-semester-hour graduate courses. All courses are offered online during the academic year and are based on Heidelberg’s semester system. Swanson said students can complete the entire TESOL endorsement program in less than one year by completing coursework in the fall and spring semester and summer. Courses may be completed as coursework-only, by non-degree students, used as electives in Heidelberg’s graduate education degree program or as additional coursework for those already holding a master’s degree.
The first classes are forming now and are scheduled to begin in late August. Heidelberg will offer the first two online courses with two more scheduled for the spring semester, which begins in January.
After completing the TESOL coursework, students must a state-mandated examination.
Heidelberg is partnering with UThink for instruction of the TESOL and reading endorsement coursework. UThink is a unique online learning system that offers affordable graduate coursework and a delivery system specifically designed to provide convenient and flexible learning opportunities for educators.
For additional information about any of the online courses and endorsements, including the new TESOL option, contact the School of Education at (419)-448-2125. Information also is available at UThink’s website, or on Heidelberg’s MAE pages.