Graduate Certificate in ESOL Literacy


The ESOL Literacy program is designed for educators interested in teaching students who are not native English speakers. The program offers classroom teachers an opportunity to increase knowledge, skills, and techniques in all aspects of reading and writing instruction, especially relative to the needs of ESOL students. The course content is focused at the classroom level to better enable teachers to meet diverse literacy needs of school­-aged children.

Program Competencies

The program competencies are built around the five domains of TESOL Standards. These may be referenced in their entirety through this link- TESOL Standards.

Outcomes Assessment

The assessment of outcomes consists of multiple measures. Grades on assignments and for courses are the first level of assessment. The course goals, learning outcomes, and assignments are designed to address the measurement of program and graduation competencies. Candidates will take an online test of their content knowledge at the end of their program, as well as a disposition survey. A second assessment will be taking the PRAXIS II ESL Subject Test (Test Code # 5362) as part of their clinical coursework. A passing score of 149 is required. Praxis scores should be submitted to Wilmington University via ETS. They will also need to be posted in Watermark.

Program Design

This certificate includes 15 credits of content-specific courses related to ESOL learners and required by the Delaware Department of Education. The certificate program requires that candidates be working in an educational setting to complete the program competency assignments.  The Graduate Certificate in ESOL Literacy program is designed to meet four sets of professional standards: Delaware Professional Teaching Standards (DPTS), Teachers of English Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), National Association of State Directors of Teacher Education and Certification (NASDTEC), and the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP). There is a non-­credit E­-Folio course requirement (MED 6102).

Course Requirements

Clinical Course

MLL 7403 Assessment of Second Language Learners

Offered in summer under special circumstances

This list does not represent the recommended sequence.

MED 6102 E-Folio

MLL 7402 Second Language Acquisition in ELL

MLL 7405 Teaching Literacy for ELLs

MLL 7406 Methods of Teaching Language Arts/English to Second Language Learners (Grades K-12)

MLL 7401 Structure of English Language in ELL

Content and Performance Assessment Requirements

This certificate program contributes to eligibility for certification as an educator in Delaware public schools. As such, all candidates must meet the content and performance assessment requirements described in Delaware Administrative Code, Title 14, Regulation 290.

The regulation states, in part:

Content Assessment

“Where a content readiness exam is applicable and available in area, subject, or category of specialization sought, the Candidate shall achieve a passing score on an examination as established by the Professional Standards Board, in consultation with the Department and with concurrence of the State Board.”

Performance Assessment

“Where a performance assessment is applicable and available in an area appropriate to the Program in which a Candidate is enrolled, the Candidate shall achieve a passing score as a requirement to Exit the Program. The performance assessment may not be scored by any employees of the Educator Preparation Program or Unit, and shall be scored by Certified Reviewers.”


The instrument selected by Wilmington University as a required exit assessment for Graduate Certificate in ESOL Literacy is ETS Praxis II, Test Code #5362, ESOL. The minimum acceptable score is 149. The assessment is administered and scored by ETS. It is the candidate’s responsibility to have PRAXIS II scores sent to Wilmington University directly from ETS (Educational Testing Service).


Candidates must obtain passing scores for this exam in order to be eligible to petition for the Graduate Certificate of ESOL Literacy. Candidates must consult with program advisors and/or the program chair to obtain the most current information about this requirement.

Qualifications for Certificate

To qualify for the Graduate Certificate of ESOL Literacy, a candidate must meet all criteria noted in the Outcomes Assessment paragraph, above.

Candidates completing the five ­courses listed above with a GPA of 3.0 and having achieved a passing score of 149 or higher on the Praxis Subject Assessment - English to Speakers of Other Languages (ETS Test # 5362) will, upon application to the Wilmington University Office of the Registrar, be issued a Wilmington University Graduate Certificate in ESOL Literacy. Applications may be found on the Wilmington University Registrar’s webpage.

Delaware Certification - ESOL Teacher

Current Delaware Department of Education regulations (DE Title 14, §1562) permit individuals who hold an initial continuing, advanced license, or a Limited Standard, Standard or Professional Status Certificate issued by the Department prior to December 31, 2003, and who hold a Standard Certificate in a subject (content), grade level, or area, to apply for a State of Delaware Standard Certificate as an ESOL Teacher after successfully completing five (5) Wilmington University College of Education and Liberal Arts courses.


However, certification requirements are subject to change by the Delaware Department of Education and the Professional Standards Board. The most recent information about those requirements can be accessed at the Delaware Department of Education/Professional Standards Board website. Wilmington University has not made determinations for licensure in states outside of Delaware. For state-by-state contact information for inquiring about individual state licensure requirements, please visit NC-SARA's Professional Licensure Directory.


Any changes in Delaware licensure and certification regulations could cause Wilmington University to make course and/or program adjustments in order to align with new or revised state requirements. Wilmington University reserves the right to change requirements to comply with any licensure/certification mandates of the Delaware Department of Education.

This information applies to students who enter this degree program during the 2024-2025 Academic Year. If you entered this degree program before the Fall 2023 semester, please refer to the academic catalog for the year you began your degree program.