TESOL Certificate

A page within Professional Studies in Education

Admission requirements

Admission requirements for graduate students in each degree and certificate area can be found in the graduate catalog

Professional licensure disclosure

  • If you plan to apply for licensure in a state other than Wisconsin after completion of this program, you should contact that state's appropriate licensing board and refer to the Professional Licensure Disclosure to determine whether this UWL program meets licensure requirements in a specific state.

How to apply

Please thoroughly read all of the bullet points below so your application gets completed correctly and won't be delayed.

Contact the graduate program expanding section

We encourage you to make contact with our program to introduce yourself and ask any questions. This is also a great resource if you are unsure of which degree/certification is the best option for you. Complete the form below to initiate this contact!

Program application assistance

Cindy George  Profile of Cindy George  Office hours

Marketing Specialist
271 Morris Hall

Specialty areas:

Application Process Questions
Registration Questions
Program Questions
Web site maintenance

Submit a UW System application expanding section
UW System App completion hints
      • "DEGREE SEEKING STUDENT?".....Choose Yes

      • CHOOSE: Looking to Earn a Graduate Degree

        • under - "Professional Development-Masters*"
          • Select the below applicable program..
            • Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Certificate
    • Consider the timing of your application and select the next available term. For example, if you're applying on 12/14/23, the next available term to select would be "Spring 2024 (classes start January 2024)."
  • Follow the link to the UW System application. Register as a new user, unless you already have an account.
  • The email you enter on this application will be used to send you important information related to completing your graduate school application. You should use an email address that you monitor on a regular basis. 
  • There is a $56 UW System application fee, which you can pay online at the time of application. Alternatively, you can send a check (payable to UWL) to the address below.  *Application fee assistance is available to McNair Scholars. 

Graduate Admissions Office
1725 State Street
La Crosse, WI 54601

Watch your email

Following UW System Application submission, you will receive two emails.

The first email is an invitation to your WINGS Student Center and includes information about your NETID/WINGS Username.  Access your WINGS Student Center to check the status of your application fee and transcripts.

The second email provides login information for your Applicant Dashboard. This email will be sent within 3 business days of submission of your UW system application; you may need to check your junk/spam email folders.  You will use your Applicant Dashboard to submit the supplemental application materials described below (including reference requests) for this program. If you have problems with the Applicant Dashboard, please contact gradstudies@uwlax.edu.

WINGS (example) 

Applicant Dashboard (example)

WINGS example App Dashboard example
Submit transcripts expanding section

Request that ALL previously attended institutions of higher education send official transcripts to the UWL Admissions Office. This includes college level courses taken while in high school. If you enrolled in fewer than 10 undergraduate semester credits at an institution, you do not have to send an official transcript unless the courses completed are prerequisites for the graduate program. Additional transcripts may be required at the university or graduate program's discretion. All graduate transcripts must be submitted. UWL accepts transcripts mailed directly from the issuing institution(s) or through an electronic secure document sending service. Transcripts should be sent to:

UWL Admissions Office
1725 State Street
La Crosse, WI 54601

  • Applicants can check transcript status via their WINGS account.
  • Applicants who are current UWL undergraduate students/alumni do not need to request formal transcripts for UWL coursework. Admissions can access your UWL transcript.
  • It may take a week or more for transcripts to be received/uploaded to your application file. Please plan accordingly in order to meet application deadlines.
  • You must arrange to have your official AP Statistics exam score report sent to UWL prior to the application deadline if the Statistics pre-requisite was fulfilled via AP exam. Please inform the program if this is the case.  
Log in to Applicant Dashboard to submit supplemental application materials expanding section

All supplemental application materials listed below (including recommendation requests) will be submitted via your Applicant Dashboard. You will receive an email invitation to login to your Applicant Dashboard within 3 business days of UW System Application submission. Contact gradstudies@uwlax.edu with questions.

Resume expanding section

This program requires submission of a resume that documents at least one year of full-time regular teaching experience in a PK-12 classroom and current teaching position in a PK-12 classroom. Undergraduate transcripts can be used to show evidence of prior learning in a world language other than English. If your prior learning in a world language other than English occurred in high school, or as part of your personal background, please include that detail in your resume.

License/Certification expanding section

You will be required to submit a current teaching license/certification. 

Evidence of prior learning in a world language other than English expanding section

Undergraduate transcripts can be used to show evidence of prior learning in a world language other than English. If your prior learning in a world language other than English occurred in high school, or as part of your personal background, please include that detail in your resume.

Additional requirements for international applicants expanding section

In addition to the application requirements listed above, international applications will need to submit the following items:

  • Transcript information: As noted above, official, certified or attested transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended must be submitted. Additionally, documents issued in languages other than English must be accompanied by a certified English translation.
  • Proof of English language proficiency: Non-native English speakers must submit evidence of one the following language proficiency requirements for admission:
    • TOEFL score (within last 2 years) of at least 79 iBT or 550 pBT - Institution Code: 1914
    • IELTS score (within last 2 years) of at least 6.0
    • Duolingo English Test (DET) score of at least 110
    • 60 PTE score
    • A bachelor’s or higher degree from UWL or another approved institution where English is the sole language of instruction.
      • Degree must be earned within two years of expected enrollment in this UWL graduate program.
      • Applicant must have attended the institution for a minimum of two years.
  • Proof of funding: Submit a bank statement and completed Affidavit of Support form.
    • Applicants who require F-2 visas for dependents (spouse and/or children) must submit additional proof of funding and passport copies for each dependent.

  • Passport information: Submit a photocopy of the photo page of your passport. 

Please contact International Admissions at  intladmissions@uwlax.edu if you have questions.  Each of the items listed in this section "Additional requirements for international applicants" can be sent directly to the UWL Admissions Office.

UWL Admissions Office
1725 State Street
La Crosse, WI 54601

Next steps

Application Review

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Your application will be reviewed as soon as it is complete.

Criminal Background Check

The WI Department of Public Instruction (DPI) requires that candidates for admission to a teacher education, administration, or pupil services program successfully pass a criminal background check (CBC) as one criterion for admission. By applying for admission to one of these programs, candidates agree to provide the necessary personal information to UWL in order to initiate their CBC, and to complete their portion of the process prior to the specified deadline. Applicants to programs leading to endorsement for licensure are responsible for all costs associated with their criminal background check(s). Admission decisions are contingent upon a successful CBC clearance decision by the UWL Office of Field Experience. Specific instructions on completing the required consent form and CBC will be sent by the UWL Office of Field Experience to the email address included on the UWL application for admission. Questions can be directed to soefieldexp@uwlax.edu.