Become an ESL Teacher in Alabama

English as a second language teachers are certified in Alabama after they have met the necessary academic and testing requirements set by the Alabama State Department of Education. Schools offering Teaching ESL degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Overview of Certified ESL Teachers in Alabama

In order to become a certified ESL Teacher in Alabama, the candidate must earn a professional educator certificate by attaining a minimum of a bachelor's degree and passing the required assessments. The general requirements for a professional educator certificate are summarized in the table below.

Education/Experience Required Bachelor's degree and state-approved educator program
Exam Requirements Praxis Core
Praxis: English to Speakers of Other Languages
edTPA
Certification Renewal Period 5 years
Requirements for Renewal 3 years teaching and 50 hours professional development
or 3 years teaching and 3 academic credits or
3 academic credits and 50 hours professional development or
6 academic credits or
100 hours professional development
or NBPTS certification (once)
Average Salary (2018) $38,060 (adult basic and secondary education and literacy teachers and instructors in AL)*
Estimated Job Growth (2016-2026) -5% (adult basic and secondary education and literacy teachers and instructors, nationwide)*

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Academic Requirements for Certification

Generally, a prospective English for speakers of other languages (ESOL) teacher will need to complete an approved educator preparation program at an accredited college or university. The Alabama State Department of Education has a database of institutions that offer these approved programs on its website.

While the general requirement is a bachelor's degree, there are few options for ESOL at the undergraduate level; the University of Alabama is one school that offers a program open to candidates undertaking bachelor's degrees. Other institutions offer master's degrees in ESOL. Graduate certificates are also available. These programs require the candidate to already have a bachelor's degree, and some are intended for teachers who already hold a certificate in another area.

Exam Requirements

There are certain assessments that all general educators must pass in order to qualify for initial certification in Alabama. The Praxis Core assessments measure the candidate's ability in the areas of reading, writing and mathematics; these basic skill exams must be passed in order to enter an approved educator program.

Prospective ESL teachers also need to pass the Praxis: English to Speakers of Other Languages assessment with a qualifying score of 155. Finally, a score of 37 on the Educative Teacher Performance Assessment (edTPA) in English as Additional Language is required for initial certification. Candidates can register for the assessments online where they will be given further information about test dates and approved testing centers.

Background Clearance

In the state of Alabama, all educators must have background clearance to teach in a classroom. To do this, the applicant's fingerprints are collected and submitted to the Alabama State Bureau of Investigation (ASBI) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The applicant can register on the Gemalto Cogent website where they will be further guided to complete the process. If the applicant has previously undergone a background check outside of Alabama, this will not be accepted.

Application Process

The prospective ESL teacher must submit their application package with their official transcripts to the Educator Certification Section of the Alabama State Department of Education. The relevant application forms can be downloaded from the Alabama State Department of Education website.

Alternatively, the official transcripts can be submitted electronically via online options listed on the Alabama Department of Education website. The fee for the professional educator certificate is $30, and the applicant can submit a check or money order with their application forms or use the online payment platform provided by the department of education.

Certificate Information

The professional educator certificate is valid for five years and can be renewed by the educator while the certificate is still valid. To renew the certificate, the applicant can complete three years of professional work experience as well as 50 clock hours of professional development. These professional development activities must be approved by the Alabama State Department of Education in order to qualify.

Other options for renewal include three years of experience with three academic credits, 50 hours of professional development with three academic credits, six academic credits, 100 hours of professional development, or initial certification from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Grand Canyon University

    Grand Canyon University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Grand Canyon University:

    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Regent University

    Regent University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Regent University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master
    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Walden University

    Walden University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Walden University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Northcentral University

    Northcentral University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Northcentral University:

    Online Programs Available

  • Purdue University Global

    Purdue University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Purdue University Global:

    • Bachelor Degrees

    Online Programs Available

  • Colorado State University Global

    Colorado State University Global responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Colorado State University Global:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Capella University

    Capella University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Capella University:

    • Doctoral
    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Strayer University

    Strayer University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Strayer University:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Trident University

    Trident University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Trident University:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Southern New Hampshire University

    Southern New Hampshire University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. Next »