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Teaching English as a Second Language - B.A. PDFDownload to print

College of Arts and Sciences
Department of English

113 Satterfield Hall
Tel: 330-672-2676
Fax: 330-672-3152


The Bachelor of Arts in Teaching English as a Second Language provides students with a broad understanding of both theory and practice in language studies, pedagogy and culture. Students gain mastery in implementing their skills in varied second-language teaching contexts; in addition, they can observe and participate with international learners in a state-of-the-art technology classroom. Students completing their practicum work in Dresden, Germany, receive a Certificate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language. Students can additionally work toward state teacher licensure by completing the Education minor.

Career Opportunities

At the undergraduate level, our programs prepare students for careers in teaching English as a second and/or foreign language, as well as for graduate and professional studies in language, education, and communications. Many graduates of the B.A. in TESL go on to teach English abroad.

Teachers of adult literacy and English as a second language held about 86,900 jobs in 2010. Additional teachers worked as unpaid volunteers. Many of the jobs are Federally funded, with additional funds coming from State and local governments. The majority of these teachers are employed by the educational services industry. (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Admission Requirements

General Admissions for Freshman Students: Students most likely to be admitted and succeed at the Kent Campus are those who have graduated with at least 16 units of the recommended college preparatory curriculum in high school, who have achieved a cumulative high school grade point average of 2.5 or higher (on a 4.0 scale), and whose composite ACT score is 21 or better (980 combined critical reading and math SAT score). For more information on admissions, visit the Admissions website for new freshmen.

General Admissions for Transfer Students: Generally, a transfer applicant who has taken 12 or more semester hours with a college cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 on a 4.0 scale may be admitted. An applicant who has taken fewer than 12 semester hours will be evaluated on both collegiate and high school records. For more information on admissions, visit the Admissions website for transfer students.

Graduation Requirements

Minimum 121 total credit hours  and  42 upper-division hours for graduation. Minimum 2.000 GPA overall and 2.000 GPA in major required for graduation.

Program Learning Outcomes

Graduates of this program will be able to:

1. Demonstrate their professional knowledge through projects and writing in our professionalizing courses (Pedagogy and Practicum).

2. Perform in our writing intensive courses.

3. Demonstrate learning and effective teaching practices incorporating distance learning, computer-assisted learning, and effective use of software.

4. Engage with diversity by defining and identifying the English Language Learners they are likely to serve and by developing effective teaching strategies to teach for diversity.

Study Abroad/Away Opportunities

Teaching English as a Foreign Language Certificate with required study abroad in Dresden, Germany

Program Fee


Student Organizations

TESL Society

Advanced Degree Programs

Type Legend: DD Diversity–Domestic; DG Diversity–Global; ELR Experiential Learning; KAD Kent Core Additional; KBS Kent Core Basic Sciences; KCM Kent Core Composition; KFA Kent Core Fine Arts: KHU Kent Core Humanities; KMC Kent Core Mathematics and Critical Reasoning; KSS Kent Core Social Sciences; WIC Writing Intensive

Please read the sections in the University Catalog on Kent Core, diversity, writing-intensive and the experiential learning requirements.

Type Course Title Credits
  US 10097 Destination Kent State: First Year Experience 1
II. MAJOR PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS (39 credits)*  Courses count in major GPA 
Type Course Title Credits

ENG 22071

Great Books to 1700 (3)
Great Books since 1700 (3)
    31001 Fundamental English Grammar 3
    31002 History of the English Language 3
    31003 Linguistics 3
    31004 Lexicography/Lexicology 3
    31005 Child Second Language Acquisition 3
    31007 TESL Pedagogy 3
    31008 Grammar for TESL/TEFL 3
    41002 Computers in Second Language Teaching 3
ELR   41092

ESL/EFL Practicum I
Teaching English as a Foreign Language Practicum
  Choose from the following TESL Writing Course: 3
  ENG 30050 Writing and Rhetoric in a Digital Age (3)  
    30051 Writing, Rhetoric and New Media (3)  
    30062 Principles of Technical Writing (3)  
    30063 Business and Professional Writing (3)  
    30064 Argumentative Prose Writing (3)  
    30066 Writing in the Public Sphere (3)  
  Choose from the following: Language and Thought in World Perspective Elective (one course must fulfill the writing-intensive requirement) 6
DG COMM 35852 Intercultural Communication (3)  
WIC ENG 31006 World Englishes (3)**  
WIC   41001 Sociolinguistics in Schooling (3)**  
DD PSYC 22221 Multicultural Psychology (3)  
Type Course Title Credits
  Foreign Language*** 14-16
  Kent Core Composition 6-8
  Kent Core Mathematics and Critical Reasoning 3-5
  Kent Core Humanities and Fine Arts (minimum one course from each) 6
  Kent Core Social Sciences (must be from two disciplines) 6
  Kent Core Basic Sciences (must include one laboratory) 6-7
  Kent Core Additional 6
  College General Requirement (must be from Kent Core Basic Sciences) 3
  College General Requirement (must be from Kent Core Social Sciences) 3
  General Electives (minimum 12 upper-division credit hours)
Credits required depends on meeting minimum 121 credit hours and minimum 42 upper-division credit hours

* All courses taken from the list of major program requirements are used in the calculation of the major GPA.

** Students must complete ENG 31006 or ENG 41001 with a minimum C (2.000) grade.

*** Fulfills College General Requirement.

Foreign Language Note: Students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in the College of Arts and Sciences must have the equivalent of Elementary I and II in any language and the Teaching English as a Second Language major requires Intermediate I and II of the same language.

All students with prior foreign language experience should take the foreign language placement test to determine the appropriate level at which to start. Some students may begin their university foreign language experience beyond the Elementary I level and will complete the requirement with fewer credit hours and fewer courses. This may be accomplished by: (1) passing a course beyond Elementary I through Intermediate II level or (2) receiving credit through Credit by Exam (CBE), the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), the Advanced Placement (AP) exam or credit through the International Baccalaureate (IB) program; or (3) being designated a "native speaker" of a non-English language (consult with the College of Arts and Sciences Advising Office for additional information). When students complete the requirement with fewer than 14 credit hours and four courses, they will complete remaining hours with general electives.

One Kent Core course must also satisfy the diversity (global or domestic) requirement. If COMM 35852 (global diversity) is taken in semester 6 or 8, then take a Kent Core–domestic diversity course. If PSYC 22221 (domestic diversity) is taken in semester 6 or 8, then take a Kent Core–global diversity course.

Students may earn the TEFL Certificate by replacing ENG 41092 with ENG 41292 Teaching English as a Foreign Language Practicum in Dresden, Germany.