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ESOL/Bilingual Endorsement - Frequently Asked Questions

General questions
Course, schedule, and registration questions

TSPC-required test questions

Practicum questions

Other

 

General questions

  • What is the ESOL/Bilingual Endorsement?
    It is a specialty area endorsement added to a K-12 teaching license that provides evidence of proficiency working with English language learners.
  • What are the basic requirements for earning an ESOL/Bilingual Endorsement at Portland State University?
    Teachers must be formally admitted to PSU, successfully complete the program of study, a supervised practicum, pass the ESOL ORELA exam, and have a valid Oregon teaching license.
  • I don’t speak another language. Can I get this endorsement?
    Yes. Bilingual ability is not required for the ESOL endorsement. You may have the bilingual designation added to the endorsement if you are fluently bilingual.

Course, schedule, and registration questions

  • I’m not yet admitted to the program. Can I still take courses?
    Yes, but you must be formally admitted to PSU before requesting a practicum.
  • When are your courses held?
    Courses are scheduled on campus in the evening during the academic year and during the day, evenings and weekends in Summer Session.
  • How quickly can I complete the ESOL endorsement program at Portland State?
    Typically, students do the coursework and practicum within 2 years of applying to the program. You have up to 7 years to complete the program.
  • Can I get my endorsement at the same time as my initial teaching license?
    If you are a student in Portland State's Graduate Teacher Education Program (GTEP), you may choose to do additional coursework and earn the ESOL endorsement at the same time as your initial license. Contact the GTEP program for more information.
  • I looked for the courses in the Portland State Bulletin/Schedule of Classes, but I can’t find them. Where and how do I find out when they are offered?
    You can search the PSU Class Schedule under Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Leadership or Special Education in the pull down menu.
  • Is your program available online?
    No. However some courses are offered partially online (hybrid).
  • I took some similar courses at another university. Do I have to take all the courses and the practicum?
    That depends. Because so much variance exists in how institutions structure their programs and courses, we cannot guarantee that your previous coursework will count towards the ESOL endorsement. However, you may submit a substitution form to PSU’s ESOL program advisor, (Dr. Anita Bright) for her review. Attach a syllabus or detailed course description with the request.

TSPC-required test questions 

  • Which test do I have to pass for this endorsement?
    You need to take the ESOL ORELA test. A passing score on the ESOL Praxis test will continue to be accepted by TSPC if the test was taken prior to Sept. 1, 2009.
  • What evidence of second language fluency is required for the bilingual designation on the endorsement?
    You must either hold a K-12 license to teach another language, or you must take two additional Praxis language tests covering content knowledge and productive language skills: French (test #s 0171 and 0173), German (test #s 0181 and 0182), and Spanish (test #s 0191 and 0192). If your bilingual fluency is in a language other than these, we typically work with PSU’s Dept. of World Languages and Literatures to find someone qualified to assess your speaking, reading, and writing abilities, and provide written verification of fluency.

Practicum questions

  • What is involved in doing the ESOL practicum?
    General practicum requirements include spending at least 90 contact hours teaching at the level of your current authorization with six or more ELL students over the course of a 10-week Portland State school term (fall, winter or spring). The syllabus will provide a more comprehensive overview.
  • How and when do I let you know I want to do my practicum?
    Submit a practicum request by the following deadlines. We do not offer the practicum during Summer Session.
    • May 15: For fall term practicum beginning late-September
    • October 15: For winter term practicum beginning early January
    • January 15: For spring term practicum beginning late-March/early April
  • I’m a full-time teacher.  Will I have to take time off to do my practicum?
    You can do your practicum in your own classroom as long as you have at least 6 ELL's and a cooperating teacher in your school with an ESOL endorsement.
  • TSPC told me all I have to do to get my ESOL endorsement is to pass the Praxis and do a 90-hour practicum. Can I do the practicum through Portland State?
    No. We do not accept teachers for practicum unless they have completed our ESOL endorsement coursework.

Other

  • Does this program qualify for financial aid?
    Taking courses in this program could allow you to qualify for financial aid if you are in a PSU master’s program. Contact Portland State’s Office of Financial Aid for more information.
  • I want to teach ESOL with adults or to teach English overseas. Will this program help?
    No. Teaching ESOL with adults requires a certificate or master’s degree in TESOL—Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, which are offered through Portland State’s Department of Applied Linguistics.