ESL/ELL Additional License

Our English Language Learners (ELL) coursework provides students with the core competencies they need to be able to apply independently to Massachusetts for a license in English Language Learners.

These courses are specifically designed to provide opportunities for current students pursuing initial licensure or teachers with the appropriate licensure to earn and independently apply for an Additional License in ELL.  These courses are taken individually as part of the regular January or summer session PaGE (Professional and Graduate Education) course offerings.  They may be taken in any order, at your own pace.

How to Apply 

Review the application process for programs in Professional and Graduate Education.

Tuition: Please see Graduate Tuition, Fees, and Billing. Scholarships are available.

In order to apply for your additional license, you need to complete all of the courses in this module and complete a State Competency Review, indicating how you have acquired subject matter knowledge for your particular license area, according to the Regulations for Educator Licensure and Preparation Program Approval 603 CMR 7.00.  To complete your review, you will also need to pass certain Massachusetts Tests for Educator Licensure (MTEL).

Required MTELs

PreK - Grade 8 

  • Communication and Literacy
  • Foundations of Reading or Reading specialist subject matter
  • General Curriculum multi-subject subtest
  • Elementary Mathematics or General Curriculum mathematics subtest
  • English as Second Language

Grades 5-12 

  • Communications and Literacy
  • Teaching subject test
  • English as Second Language

Course Descriptions

Note: Candidates need to take only one of the following courses:

  • X.EDUC 463: Teaching English Language Learners
    – or –
  • X.ELL 463: Teaching English Language Learners: Sheltered English Immersion Endorsement

X.EDUC-463 | Teaching English Language Learners

Offered: Fall and Spring

Credits: 4

Description: This course is designed to support K-12 teachers in designing curriculum, instruction, and assessments for the growing number of English Language Learners (ELLs) assigned to content area classrooms in American Schools.  There is a need for all teachers to develop a critical ability to teach disciplinary literacies to all students, including ELLs, former ELLs, and speakers of non-dominant varieties of English in the context of high stakes school reform.  To achieve this goal, students will: learn about language and literacy development from a sociocultural perspective (including how this perspective contrasts with other views in the field); observe and reflect on the schooling experiences and literacy practices of ELL students; learn about critical language-based pedagogies; and develop a curricular unit that supports students’ academic literacy development as part of content teaching.  This course is designed to be in compliance with the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education’s RETELL standards (Rethinking the Teaching of English Language Learners), and students who successfully complete this course will be recommended to the state for SEI endorsement.

Restrictions: This course is limited to Mount Holyoke MAT, MAMT, and MATL students only

Advisory prerequisites: Requires a field-experience in an educational setting.

X.ELL-416 | Language Assessment and Classroom Practice

Offered: January Intersession  

Credits: 2

Description: Brief introduction to theory and practice in assessing students' academic English proficiency. Students will learn about purposes of and types of language assessments (e.g., large-scale standardized tests like WIDA ACCESS, alternative assessments like portfolios, formative assessments) and practice designing oral language assessment tasks and using rubrics  to evaluate student writing.

Restrictions: This course is limited to graduate students only.

X.ELL-418 | Second Language Acquisition and Classroom Practice

Description: This course will a) introduce students to theories of second language acquisition (cognitive, social, and linguistic influences) and how these inform teaching practices, and b) introduce teaching methods and approaches to teaching ELLs so students can begin to make informed context-sensitive decisions about language teaching methods, techniques, lesson planning, materials, classroom management, etc.

Restrictions: This course is limited to graduate students only; others may register with permission of the instructor.

Credits: 2

Offered: Summer 2  

Format: online

X.ELL-436 | Teaching English Language Learners Internship 1

Offered: Fall  

Credits: 2

Description: Students pursuing an additional license in teaching English language learners are expected to complete a supervised field experience of at least 60 hours in an approved ELL program in a public school setting (e.g., ELL content classroom, push-in teaching, pullout to separate classroom). In addition to the field experience component, students attend biweekly course meetings, during which they will have the opportunity to learn more about ELL program models and policy trends, English language development standards (e.g., WIDA, Next Generation ESL), tracking student development, advocacy, professional collaboration, and leveraging an additional license on the job market.

Restrictions: This course is limited to Mount Holyoke graduate students only.

X.ELL-438 | Teaching English Language Learners Internship 2

Offered: Spring  

Credits: 2

Description: Students pursuing an additional license in teaching English language learners are expected to complete a supervised field experience of at least 100 hours in an approved ELL program in a public school setting (e.g., ELL content classroom, push-in teaching, pullout to separate classroom). In addition to the field experience component, students attend weekly course meetings, during which they will have the opportunity to learn more about  language development in the four domains (listening, speaking, reading, writing), planning curriculum for effective English language instruction in K-12 standards based settings, and ELLs and technology.

Restrictions: This course is limited to Mount Holyoke graduate students only.

X.ELL-463 | Teaching English Language Learners: Sheltered English Immersion Endorsement (standalone course)

Description: This course is offered for teachers seeking SEI endorsement. It serves as the ReTELL course that provides an overview of pragmatic pedagogical strategies for including English Language Learners in content area classroom instruction. Readings in language acquisition theory, language learning and teaching, effective lesson design and assessment, Sheltered Instruction Observation  Protocol and knowledge of intercultural learners are covered. Students will have experience developing and adapting lessons and curriculum to address the needs of students in their pre-practicum settings.

Advisory prerequisites: This course is offered for licensed Massachusetts teachers and teacher candidates seeking SEI endorsement

Credits: 3

Offered: Summer 1  

Format: on-campus