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Related Majors to the TESOL & Multilingual Education Minor

Department of Education

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Related Majors to the TESOL & Multilingual Education Minor

The unique combination of theory and practical applications in the TESOL & Multilingual Education minor is attractive for students from a wide variety of disciplines. The following list represents a sampling of complementary majors but does not limit the possible combinations.

Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD)

The ASHA Code of Ethics maintains that audiologists and speech-language pathologists (SLPs) must be able to provide culturally and linguistically appropriate services. In the TESOL & Multilingual Education minor, undergraduate students in Communication Sciences and Disorders will deepen their understanding of language development with a specific emphasis on emergent bilinguals. This is especially relevant for work in a school setting where multilingual children are at risk for being both over and under-referred to speech-language pathology services. The minor in TESOL & Multilingual Education will help SLPs more effectively collaborate with families and teachers of culturally and linguistically diverse students.

Students in CSD will benefit from topics covered in Bilingualism & Biliteracy Development: Foundations of Second Language Acquisition (EDUC 3100) and in Language Policy and Education (EDUC 4050). The minor is also an excellent preparation for graduate speech-language pathology programs with bilingual/multilingual concentrations.

Education

(Education Studies, Integrated Elementary & Special Education, Teaching Foreign Languages, Teaching Communication Arts and Literature, Teaching Mathematics, Teaching Sciences, Teaching Social Studies, Unified Early Childhood Studies)

The demographics of U.S. schools reflect the increasing diversity of society. There are now more than 73,000 English language learners (ELLs) enrolled in MN schools; in fact, they are the fastest growing population of students. For instance, Saint Paul Public Schools has the highest concentration of ELLs in Minnesota with 31% of the elementary and secondary student population classified as English language learners.

All teachers are responsible for supporting the academic literacy of English language learners in their classrooms, and employers are looking for teachers who can effectively teach diverse learners. In fact, Minnesota district and charter school officials have recently expressed that less than 25% of teachers are prepared to teach English language learners. Courses such as English Language Learner Teaching Methods (EDUC 3311) and Assessment of Language Development (EDUC 3330) will help mainstream teachers to meet the needs of emergent bilinguals in school.

The TESOL & Multilingual Education minor does not lead to an ESL endorsement. The minor focuses on equipping teacher candidates with skills they need to support the English language development of emergent bilinguals in mainstream classrooms.

International Studies

Both the TESOL & Multilingual Education minor and TEFL Certificate are great options for undergraduate students in the International Studies program. A TEFL Certificate or TESOL & Multilingual Education minor are valuable additions to applications for competitive international teaching programs such as the Japan Exchange and Teaching program, the Fulbright English Teaching Assistants program, or the Peace Corps.

The Language Policy and Education course (EDUC 4050) will be of particular interest to International Studies majors because of its international focus on language policy and language education.

Linguistics

The ability to analyze language is essential for teachers and researchers in the field of language education. Linguistics majors have the opportunity to apply 9 credits of Linguistics courses towards the TESOL & Multilingual Education minor. The remaining 12 credits in this minor offer Linguistics students a chance to deepen their understanding of the connection between language and culture.

Students will learn about Systemic Functional Linguistics in the Bilingualism & Biliteracy Development: Foundations of Second Language Acquisition (EDUC 3100) course as they analyze language for grammar, function, and form. Sociocultural linguistics is also woven throughout the minor, most notably in the Language Policy and Education (EDUC 4050) course, which explores the relationship between language ideology and power. This minor is excellent preparation for future studies in applied linguistics or education.

World Languages & Cultures

(Chinese Area Studies, Hispanic Studies, Latin American Studies, German Studies, French Studies)

As more and more research emerges showing the incredible social, cognitive, and personal benefits of bilingualism, schools across the country are turning to immersion education as a way to foster children’s overall language development. English language learners, in particular, make significant gains in their academic and language proficiency in dual language immersion programs. As the waiting lists grow for families interested in sending their children to immersion programs, the need for qualified teachers is also growing. Schools face a real challenge with hiring qualified teachers, and World Languages and Cultures along with English as a Second Language are both licensure shortage areas in Minnesota. Even though the TESOL & Multilingual Education minor does not lead to licensure, it provides students with hands-on experience working with multilingual students and the opportunity to learn more about balancing the teaching of language, literacy, and subject matter. It is excellent preparation for future studies in education. Graduates from the program may be interested in working in immersion education camps or teaching English overseas.

This minor includes specialized professional development in content-based language instruction (EDUC 3311), assessment of language development (EDUC 3330), and culturally-responsive curriculum (EDUC 4050).

For more information about the TESOL & Multilingual Education minor, please contact the Academic English Language Program in the Department of Education.

Instructor

Alex Seydow, seydo002@d.umn.edu