TESL Add-On Licensure Program


Interested in teaching English as a Second Language but need to be certified? Check out our new Masters of Arts in Teaching program with a specialization in Teaching English as a Second Language. You can be initially certified in North Carolina in our new program! Email Dr. Eleni Pappamihiel for more information.

Learn about free classes offered through the ELMS grant

Contact Information

Program Coordinator

N. Eleni Pappamihiel
910-962-2746 Phone
910-962-3609 Fax

Department of Instructional Technology, Foundations and Secondary Education
Watson College of Education
University of North Carolina
601 South College Road
Wilmington, NC 28403-5980


Welcome to the TESL Add-On Licensure Program

TESL is a growing area of need in the United States and especially in the Southeast. Over the past decade, states such as North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia have seen tremendous growth in the number of English language learners (ELLs). The proposed add-on licensure in Teaching English as a Second Language (K-12) reflects the extreme need in Southeastern North Carolina for teachers qualified to work with English language learners (ELLs). To meet this need, the Watson College at the University of North Carolina Wilmington has an 18 credit-hour English as a Second Language Add-On Licensure Program.

The TESL add-on licensure program emphasizes the development of teachers who will cultivate bicultural and biliterate individuals who are able to enjoy success in the US academic system while being encouraged to maintain their native language and culture. To this end, the program is based on the importance of providing students a strong pedagogical foundation with a sense of social justice through community involvement. From an educational standpoint, the theoretical framework of the program is based on socioculturalism and critical literacy. We believe that learning best takes place in an interactive environment that facilitates the development of higher order thinking skills that enable learners to critically examine their own environment. It is this philosophy that we have embedded in the TESL add-on licensure program at University of North Carolina Wilmington.

Those who do not wish to teach in the K-12 schools may also be interested in participating in the program in order to teach English as a Foreign (EFL) language overseas.

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