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Minor in English as a Second Language


English as a second language (ESL) teachers help culturally and linguistically diverse groups of students become fluent in English to overcome language barriers and master grade-level curriculum.

If you believe children need good English skills to succeed in American classrooms—and to become more fully engaged residents of their local communities—pairing this minor with one of our undergraduate degrees in education from Marian University is a good career choice.

You can choose from a B.A. in applied educational studies, elementary education, secondary education, special education, or health and physical education.

While most students at Marian who pursue this minor want to be classroom teachers (whether in the U.S. or overseas), this minor may also be appropriate for students who want to work in business, social service, church, and other settings.

Why choose a minor in ESL at Marian?

According to a 2017 report by the Indiana Department of Education’s Office of English Learning & Migrant Education, more than 112,000 Hoosier children speak a language other than English in their homes. In fact, there are more than 275 different languages spoken by students who attend Indiana K-12 schools.

The American Immigration Council reports that Indiana has a growing immigrant community, of which many members were born in Mexico. Other top countries of origin are India, China, the Philippines, and Myanmar.

Anticipating this demographic trend, Marian University’s ESL program prepares you to be a responsive, culturally competent instructor who can effectively teach English language learners in inclusive environments.

  • Our coursework will provide you with the knowledge and skills you need to add ESL (also known as English as a new language or ENL) to your initial Indiana teaching license.
  • This minor will add depth and diversity to your teacher preparation. By gaining the skills necessary to help ESL students learn the language—and apply it in the classroom and their home lives when needed—you’ll add a new dimension to your career and gain more appreciation of multicultural issues in K-12 schools.

What will you study?

Marian’s ESL courses will help you build a stronger command of the English language, including its historical roots, grammar, semantics, and dialects. You’ll explore how students acquire an understanding of language, process the language they read and hear, and employ language in social settings.

In addition, you will study the process and stages of second language acquisition and the learning capabilities of students at each stage. The roles of culture and acculturation in language acquisition and classroom performance serve as a catalyst to examine teaching strategies, lesson, and assessment modification. You’ll gain understanding of current approaches to teaching language, contexts for language learning, and the types of materials that aid in teaching and learning.

In total, you will complete at least 21 credits of ESL coursework, including courses such as:

  • ENG 304: The English Language
  • ENG 307: Principles of Linguistics
  • ENG 360 or 460: Internship in English
  • EDU 318: English Learners and Diversity in Inclusive Classrooms
  • EDU 328: Best Practices in Teaching ENL
  • EDU 358: Assessment of Second Language Learners

What are your career paths?

When combined with one of our education degrees, you will be prepared to pursue initial teaching licensure in the State of Indiana. With your state license, you can teach ESL in:

  • Public, private, or parochial K-12 schools
  • American schools located overseas

Depending on your career interests and goals, you might teach English outside of the United States. If you love to travel and explore life in other countries, teaching English overseas is an option.

Because the ability to teach and the ability to speak more than one language are valuable commodities in the business world, earning an ESL minor can open doors beyond the classroom. You might work for employers such as:  

  • State or federal government agencies
  • Social service organizations
  • Nonprofit groups
  • Community centers
  • Churches

According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), here are some career paths with projected growth and salary data.

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© 2021 Marian University
Notice of Nondiscrimination
Marian University does not discriminate on the basis of race, ethnicity, color, sex, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, creed, national origin, age or disabilities in the selection of administrative personnel, faculty and staff, and students.
*Placement rates are gathered from data collected from graduates within six months of graduation.

Students may make a complaint to the Indiana Commission of Higher Education.

Marian University is sponsored by the Sisters of St. Francis, Oldenburg, Indiana.

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