How to Become an ESL Teacher in Minnesota

Teachers in Minnesota can earn a special ESL certification that will apply at all levels, from kindergarten to 12th grade. Read on to learn about the requirements to acquire this additional license. Schools offering Teaching ESL degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

ESL Teacher Certification in Minnesota

Having teachers who are certified to teach English as a second language (ESL) is an important part of any educational system. Those who wish to obtain this certification in Minnesota must complete an approved ESL program in addition to completing the regular application process for a general teaching license.

Education/Experience Required Bachelor's degree plus a state-approved preparation program
Exams Required MTLE Content Area exam
License Validity Period Tier 1 license good for 1 year;
Tier 2 license good for 2 years;
Tier 3 license good for 3 years;
Tier 4 license good for 5 years
Advancement Requirements Continuing education, passing scores on state content and/or pedagogy exams, and 2+ years of teaching experience
Mean Salary (2017 Minnesota teachers;
ESL not specified)
$58, 790 (Kindergarten),
$63,490 (Elementary),
$64,780 (Middle),
$65,290 (Secondary)*
Estimated Job Growth (2014-2024) 2.4% (All Education, Training, and Library Occupations in MN)**

Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, **MN Legislative Reference Library

Job Description

ESL teachers play many roles in K-12 schools. They work directly with students for whom English is a second language, helping them to understand and communicate in English. An ESL teacher might have their own classroom, or work with students across a number of classrooms. ESL teachers can also work as consultants to other faculty and administrators, helping them better understand and support students who are English language learners.

ESL Certification Standards

In addition to fulfilling the requirements for a regular teaching license, a prospective ESL teacher in Minnesota must demonstrate knowledge specific to teaching students for whom English is a second language. Some of the things you will learn in an ESL preparation program include how to adapt lessons to ESL students, how language learning operates, and how to incorporate cultural responsiveness into communication with students and families. A prospective ESL teacher must also spend time learning a second language; this can be for 2 years at the high school level or for 1 year at a college or graduate school.

What a Board Approved ESL Program Might Look Like

There are a number of ESL teacher preparation programs in Minnesota. Many of them involve earning a Bachelor's or Master's degree in addition to the ESL teaching license, or offer the ESL certificate as an additional license to be added to an already-existing non-ESL license. Some programs offer on-line classes in addition to their on-campus courses. ESL teacher preparation programs can be found at both public and private colleges and universities.

Minnesota ESL Certification Requirements

In order to obtain a K-12 ESL teaching certification in Minnesota, a number of requirements must be met. Specifically, prospective K-12 ESL teachers must:

  • complete a Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution,
  • demonstrate state standards for beginning teachers,
  • complete an ESL teaching preparation program approved by the Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board,
  • complete the MTLE ESL content area subtests,
  • have a minimum of 100 hours of pre-student teaching, field-based experience,
  • have a minimum of 12 continuous weeks of full-time, supervised student teaching, and
  • have experience working with all age groups (K-6, 5-8, 9-12).

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

  • Strayer University

    Strayer University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Strayer University:

    • Master

    Online Programs Available

  • Southern New Hampshire University

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    Popular programs at Southern New Hampshire University:

    • Master

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  • Capella University

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    Popular programs at Capella University:

    • Doctoral
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    Popular programs at Walden University:

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

    Popular programs at Grand Canyon University:

    • Master
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  • Purdue University Global

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

    Popular programs at Purdue University Global:

    • Master
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  • Colorado Christian University

    Colorado Christian University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Colorado Christian University:

    • Master
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  • Liberty University

    Liberty University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Liberty University:

    • Doctoral
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  • Northcentral University

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  • University of Minnesota

    Campus Locations:

    • Minnesota: Duluth
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