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Explore the teaching of English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) minor at UW-Eau Claire

The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire's teaching of English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) minor is designed for teachers K-12 looking to teach English to speakers of other languages in an American school.

Coursework throughout the minor will help you to develop an understanding of the cultural and social needs of students who speak other languages amid an English-speaking majority. You'll learn to recognize the language difficulties of non-native speakers and effectively teach sounds, basic structures and vocabulary of English. Field experience will provide you with an opportunity to modify course materials, instructional strategies and assessments so that English language learning students can engage in course content, while simultaneously developing their new language.

The teaching of English to speakers of other languages minor is only for students in the department of education for equity and justice. The minor must be combined with a K-12 teaching major. Students should also have at least one year of language classes (other than English) prior to pursuing the minor. 

Completion of the program leads to licensure in TESOL in K-12 classrooms when combined with a major in a language other than English, a major in music education or a major in physical education.

Maisee Yang

Bringing cultures into the classroom

Graduating from UWEC with an elementary education major and TESOL minor, Maisee Yang is excited for what's next. Whether she teaches fifth-eighth grade in the U.S., or fulfills her dream of teaching abroad in Europe or Asia, Maisee is passionate about incorporating multiple cultures into school curriculums.

“Bringing awareness and acknowledging students' cultural backgrounds can raise awareness — not only in the classroom or schools but in their communities as well,” Maisee said.

Read more about Maisee's experience as a Blugold — and her hopes for the future.

Why teaching of English to speakers of other languages at UW-Eau Claire?

Real-world preparation. Professional development is a key focus of the minor. Prior to graduation, you will be required to complete a 40-hour minimum field experience where you'll take what you've learned and put it into practice. Working in a classroom setting, you'll have the opportunity to build your leadership and communication skills, identify your preferred teaching style and discover how to best meet the needs of your learners. 

Mentoring from diverse, supportive faculty. While fulfilling the minor, you'll learn from supportive faculty members from a variety of departments and backgrounds. Our professors have a wealth of knowledge and expertise and will use it to inspire and motivate you. Here, you won't just be a number. Faculty will know you by name and go out of their way to help you become the best teacher you can be. 

Quick facts

Licensure information

Completion of teacher preparation programs at UW-Eau Claire meets licensure requirements in Wisconsin. Our programs may not meet requirements in other states. It is very important that individuals seeking licensure in another state obtain the most recent certification/licensure information directly from the state in which they seek employment. Find contact information on each state licensure office here.

Licensure requirements can change at any time. UW-Eau Claire’s Teacher Education Program Office ensures that our programs meet the requirements for licensure in Wisconsin. If you seek licensure in another state, be aware that their requirements could change at any time.

The United States Department of Education requires institutions to disclose information for programs leading to professional certification or licensure concerning whether each program meets state educational requirements for initial licensure or certification. Please note:

  1. Obtaining a Wisconsin Teaching License PRIOR to applying for a teaching license in another state is usually helpful and strongly recommended.
  2. "Meets requirements" means that a student is eligible for a license with stipulations, typically for 1-3 years, in that state. The stipulations are likely to be specific testing requirements and/or competency through a course or examination. In some instances, additional stipulations might be added.
  3. Licensure grade levels vary from state to state. Students who are eligible for a specific grade range in Wisconsin may be licensed for a narrower grade range in another state. Each state determines grade ranges for licensing differently.
  4. State licensure requirements may change at any time. Licensure questions should be referred to the Teacher Education Program Office (

The requirements of this program meet licensure in the following states: Wisconsin, Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Texas

The requirements of this program do not meet licensure in the following states: Not Applicable

It has not been determined whether the requirements of this program meet licensure in the following states: Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wyoming, District of Columbia, American Samoa, Guam, Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands

As a future teacher, it's vital for me to be well-rounded in the many cultures and ethnicities I will be teaching so I can better serve them. By knowing different cultures and ethnicities, I'm able to widen my perception of the world I'm in and stand up for them when a stereotype or prejudice arises against them.

Mai Lee Kha Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages

Teaching of English to speakers of other languages minor curriculum

The TESOL minor is comprised of courses like linguistics, phonetics, second language acquisition theory and language in society. Your courses will also address the developmental, social, political and cultural contexts of English language learners' lives, communities and educational experiences. Through field experience in real classrooms and coursework from multiple disciplines, you will learn how to build effective curriculum and assessment practices for English language learners while recognizing the importance of support programs for these students to ensure their academic success.

What classes do teaching of English to speakers of other languages minors take?

Your classes may cover topics like: 

Learn more about the teaching of English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) minor (K-12) in the UWEC catalog.

Additional information

Understanding TESOL as it relates to TEFL
What is the difference between Teaching English as a Second Language (TESOL) and Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)?

Professionals in the field use the distinction between second language environments, where English is spoken in the community outside of the classroom, and foreign language environments, where the students' native language is spoken outside of the classroom. If you want to teach in the U.S. (a second language environment) with a state of Wisconsin license, you would pursue the TESOL minor. If you want to teach overseas, you would pursue your TEFL certificate.

Can I obtain the TESOL minor for an in-state license and complete the TEFL certificate so I can teach internationally?

Yes, you may add the TEFL certificate to your TESOL minor with very little additional course work.

Find more information about the TEFL certificate

Learn more about UWEC

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Related programs at UW-Eau Claire

Thinking about minoring in teaching of English to speakers of other languages? Here are other programs you may be interested in exploring.

Department information

Photo of students walking in front of Centennial Hall

Education for Equity and Justice

Centennial Hall 3215
1698 Park Avenue
Eau Claire, WI 54701
Visit the Education for Equity and Justice department website