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ELMS Project

ESL Goes Mainstream Blog



Pre-Service Teachers

English as a Second Language (ESL) is a growing area of need in the United States,
particularly in the Southeast. Over the last decade, states such as North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia have seen tremendous growth in the number of English Language Learners (ELLs). As the ELL population grows, so does the need for teachers qualified to work with ELLs. If you plan to teach K-12 in North Carolina, you can work toward ESL certification in this high-need area with the help of the ELMS Project.

One of the goals of the ELMS Project is focused on preparing pre-service teachers to be eligible for the North Carolina ESL K-12 Add-On Licensure. An Add-On Licensure in ESL will give you the credentials you need to be successful in ESL and work with ELLs. The ELMS Project offers two programs for pre-service teachers, designed to fit your academic and teaching goals. Both programs have a completely online option.

  • ESL Add-On Licensure
  • ESL Topics for Non-ESL Teachers (EDN 307)

The ELMS Project provides in-state tuition & fees reimbursement for the six courses comprising the Add-On Licensure program and the ESL Topics for Non-ESL Teachers (EDN 307) course. You will also receive a small stipend for books, depending on availability of funds. To qualify for tuition reimbursement, you must sign an ELMS Agreement with the ELMS Project to participate in professional development research for the life of the grant (through 2016) and plan to teach K-12 in North Carolina.

The ELMS Project is funded through a five-year grant provided by the Department of Education's Office of English Language Acquisition (OELA).The project began in August 2011 and will run through August 2016. To receive tuition reimbursement for ELMS-sponsored programs, all courses must be completed by June 2016.

ESL Add-On Licensure Program

The ESL Add-On Licensure program is open to all students admitted to Watson College of Education. If you are interested in adding ESL to your teaching licensure, contact TESL Program Director Dr. Eleni Pappamihiel to set up an advising appointment.

Course Semester Credits
EDN 265: Teaching English language learners Fall
EDN 423: Second Language Acquisition Fall
EDN 326: Applied Linguistics for ESL Spring
EDN 417: Second Language Methods Spring
EDN 418: Assessment for English Language Learners Summer I
EDN 312: English Grammar for Teachers
(ENG 321 may be substituted)
Summer I

The Watson College of Education offers a minor in English as a Second Language, which leads to Add-On teacher licensure in English as a Second Language for individuals who have earned initial NC teacher licensure.

ESL Topics for Non-ESL Teachers (EDN 307)

This elective course covers cross-cultural communication and second language acquisition but focuses on methods and assessment information aimed at helping mainstream teachers become more proficient teachers of English Language Learners (ELLs). We will review critical aspects of the Common Core State Standards and how teachers can increase the academic language proficiency of all their students.

Course Dates

ESL Topics for Non-ESL Teachers (EDN 307) is offered in spring semesters. All undergraduate students (regardless of major) are invited to enroll in this course.

To Apply to the ELMS Project

  1. Complete the online application to indicate the program in which you are interested.
  2. We will ask you to sign the ELMS Agreement and send to the ELMS Project. You may enroll in either program without signing an agreement; however, you will not be eligible for tuition reimbursement without a signed agreement.
  3. (ESL Add-On Licensure Participants Only) - Provide two letters of recommendation from professors. Please confirm with the professors, as you will be asked to submit their names and email addresses in the on-line application.
  4. (ESL Add-On Licensure Participants Only) - Write an essay of goals: two to three pages, double spaced, of a well-organized essay outlining your professional goals and how the add-on licensure will support these goals. Send your essay to
  5. Once you have filled out an application and returned a signed agreement, the ELMS Project will send you a confirmation of your acceptance to the program.

For additional information or questions, please contact us at

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