20% Off Spring 2021 Special

Register now for TESL/TEFL Certificate and save 20% on your spring tuition.

Take classes online from home. Contact us for details.

(619) 594-5907



Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, all in-person components of this program have moved into a virtual format until further notice. Enrollment in our virtual format requires access to a desktop or laptop computer. Mobile devices such as smartphones do not meet this requirement.

Please contact specific contact information to learn how these changes affect your program. SDSU will continue to monitor the situation and follow the guidance of our local and federal health agencies.


Teach English as a Second Language/Teach English as a Foreign Language

This 130-hour certificate program prepares novice instructors to successfully live and teach English overseas. Over 100 TESL/TEFL Certificate graduates have been employed in over 40 countries with the help of ALI's job placement assistance program. This program combines a solid teaching foundation with hands-on practical classroom experience. Specialized sessions – language acquisition theory, teaching specific language skills, effective second language teaching methods, understanding the English language learner, classroom atmosphere and management, lesson preparation, and materials development - provide participants the tools that they need to successfully apply for, and perform teaching assignments abroad.

Estimated Cost
Textbooks not included
Completion Time
Day Sessions: 4 Weeks
Night Sessions: 11 Weeks
Course Format

Are you an SDSU Alumni Association Lifetime Member? If so, click here to learn more about how you can receive 20% off registration for this program.


SDSU's American Language Institute has been training teachers of ESL/EFL since 1981. The ALI teaching staff has a broad base of experience in teacher training, ranging from Fulbright assignments in Costa Rica, Romania, and Japan, to presenting in Brazil, Korea, Japan, Mexico, and Jordan.

Register Below

Day Courses Registration

Night Courses Registration

Program Highlights and Goals

  • Worldwide Job Placement Assistance
    Job placement assistance is provided to graduates.
  • Lesson Strategies and Plans
    Students learn how to teach reading, listening, speaking, pronunciation, grammar, and writing.
  • Teaching Strategies
    Students learn standardized test preparation (e.g., TOEFL), business English, and how to work with younger learners.
  • Teacher-Mentor
    An experienced mentor teacher is assigned to each participant.
  • Language Acquisition
    A working knowledge of the theoretical aspects of language acquisition and communicative language teaching are taught.
  • EFL Teaching Methodologies
    Students learn the most effective methods to teach and present English grammar and explain structural patterns in ways that help improve international students’ communicative abilities.
  • Résumé Assistance
    Support is provided with the creation of international teaching curriculum vitae.
  • Student-centered Techniques
    Students learn how to manage a communicative classroom using small groups.
  • Reflective Teaching
    Students learn through peer teaching and actual classroom teaching with feedback from experienced teachers.
  • Technology
    Participants learn about new technologies and practice using technology in the classroom.

For more information on this program, please contact tesltefl.world@sdsu.edu.


TESL/TEFL Certificate

Day Courses Register - TEFL 0001, Teacher Training Spring 2021, 1/25 - 2/19
Night Courses Register - TEFL 0002, Teacher Training Spring 2021, 2/9 - 4/29

Number of weeks

4 (daytime program) 11 (nighttime program).

Hours of participation

130 (including homework)
Daytime classes meet 9 am-4:30 pm Monday through Friday.
Nighttime classes are 6-9 pm, Tuesdays and Thursdays (32 hours of observation and student teaching are required between the hours of 9 am-3 pm, Monday-Thursday).


Bachelor's degree required for job placement assistance, all are eligible to apply, TOEFL 551/79 or oral interview if non-native English speaker.

Also Included

Students have access to résumé/CV writing assistance, job placement assistance, and mentorship program.

Dates and Costs

See Calendar & Fees

Course Fees

One week notice and a full refund of deposit will be given if a minimum class size is not met.


Labor Analysis
ESL/Foreign Language Teacher — Nationwide

Job Postings
Last 12 months

Projected Growth
Over 10 years

Salary Range



  • Core Training
    Language acquisition; communicative language pedagogy; speaking, listening, reading, writing, grammar, and pronunciation integration; English grammar; understanding the EFL learner; classroom management; lesson planning; the TEFL profession; and communicative language teaching.
  • Specialized Modules
    English as an international language; working abroad; teaching standardized exam preparation; teaching business English; and teaching younger learners.
  • Teaching
    Students facilitate in a variety of ESL classes and have the opportunity to teach in their mentor's class

For additional information on the TESL/TEFL Certificate program contact tesltefl.world@sdsu.edu.