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English as a Second Language (Graduate Certificate)

If you’re a current school teacher looking to enhance your credentials and make a lasting impact on your students, Creighton University’s graduate certificate in English as a Second Language (ESL) is for you!

Creighton offers guaranteed scholarships for all current educators to help support and encourage teachers to continue to their education. See tuition and fees section below for more details.

Join us and learn the unique skills necessary to effectively educate and nurture the children in your classroom whose native language is not English. Our unique curriculum is designed to provide educators with sought after expertise to help develop educational proficiency in students who are unable to communicate fluently or learn effectively in English.

"Creighton’s ESL program is designed to make “good” teachers, “great” teachers for those students that arrive in classrooms from all corners of the world. This program helps teachers better understand the individual needs of ALL students. It gives teachers the tools they need so they can see maximum growth in English Language Learners who engage in lessons that are built on high interest."

—Jean Hearn, EdD | Associate Professor and Program Director, Graduate School 

Creighton’s graduate certificate in English as a Second Language (ESL) goes beyond the basics of teaching in English—the program addresses diversity and diverse cultures with an emphasis on the unique differences these students bring to the classroom.  Once enrolled in the program you will engage in research, learn to understand, reflect and interact with multiple dimensions of diversity and develop the skills necessary to affectively teach and nurture your students. 


We know that a graduate certificate is not a small investment of your time and money, so we make sure that your investment is a smart one—and one that you can fit in your schedule. This 15-credit program is designed to meet the needs of busy professionals and can be completed online in about a year. 

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Program Details

Program Goals and Curriculum

The English as a Second Language (ESL) graduate certificate program is designed for students who have obtained a bachelor’s or master’s degree and wish to enhance their skills and earning potential with enhanced credentials. If you decide to pursue further graduate study, all courses can be applied to our MS in Educational Specialist Areas.

To earn this certificate, you must complete 15 credit hours:

  • EDU 541 Curriculum Design for English as a Second Language
  • EDU 542 Methods in English Language Learning
  • EDU 543 Practicum in English Language Learning
  • EDU 544 Framework of World Languages and Cultures
  • EDU 692 Cultural Issues in Education

Creighton’s education programs are nationally recognized as excellent by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP) and by the Higher Learning Commission. This reputation is earned thanks to Creighton’s carefully designed program curricula and standards, as well as the talented faculty who apply Jesuit values to ensure student success.

Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to the English as a Second Language Graduate Certificate program, applicants must:

  • Complete an application
  • Provide an official transcript from the institution that granted the Bachelor’s degree. Read more about sending transcripts here
  • Teaching license required

A personal interview may be requested in addition to the above requirements. The interview may be conducted in-person or virtually.

Due to the specific features and requirements of this program, international students cannot be admitted. Unique situations may be discussed with your enrollment specialist.

Tuition & Financial Aid

Tuition rates change in the fall of each year. Visit our financial aid site for more details.


Based on current educational role, a minimum of $1,800 scholarship is available and automatically applied for all educators. The scholarship will be applied per credit throughout the program.

Financial Aid
To help make your graduate studies at Creighton University more affordable, we encourage you to file the FAFSA to apply for financial assistance. We also encourage you to apply for available graduate student scholarships and fellowships.

Still have questions? Email or call a friendly financial specialist at 402.280.2731 for any additional questions you may have.

Dates and Deadlines

The table below details the enrollment deadlines and starting dates of courses for the current academic year. If you have any questions about dates, deadlines, or application materials, please contact an admissions advisor for personalized assistance.


AugustJuly 15*

*Applications for this program are open in odd years only. If you are interested in pursuing your education sooner, please explore our MS in Educational Specialist Areas.

Still Have Questions?

Reach out to an Admissions Advisor
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