ESL Teacher Certification in Ohio

Jan 02, 2019

Increased economic globalization and migration into the U.S. has also led to a significant increase in ELLs (English Language Learners). This has led to an increased demand for qualified ESL (English as a Second Language) teachers in many states, including Ohio. Here, the steps that need to be followed to qualify for the Ohio ESL endorsement, are described.

ESL Teaching Certification Requirements in Ohio

Average Salary for Teachers in Ohio (2016)* $54,680 (Adult, Basic, and Secondary Education and Literacy Teachers)
Required Degree Bachelor's degree
Degree Field Education
Testing Requirements Ohio Assessments for Educators (OAE) Professional Knowledge Assessment (Pedagogy) and TESOL Content Assessment English to Speakers of Other Languages (021)

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Step 1: Earn a Degree

The first step in acquiring a teaching license in Ohio is to obtain a bachelor's degree from a regionally-accredited college or university. Additionally, candidates should undertake an approved educator preparation program which is typically taken as part of a bachelor's degree.

In order to qualify for initial licensure, candidates enrolled in preparation programs are typically required to:

  • Complete 100 hours of supervised field experience prior to the student teaching internship for initial licensure.
  • Complete a minimum of 12-week student teaching internship.
  • Complete a three-semester hour reading requirement.

ESL teaching candidates should pursue coursework in the area of TESOL. Some of the approved endorsement programs available in Ohio require as little as 12 credit hours of TESOL coursework.

Step 2: Pass all Required Testing

Once the initial teaching licensure education requirements have been fulfilled, candidates must pass the Ohio Assessments for Educators (OAE) exam which is divided into two sections: the pedagogy assessment and the content assessment.

The OAE Professional Knowledge Assessment (Pedagogy) (004): Multi-Age (PK-12) test is a computer-based test and includes the following:

  • 100 multiple-choice questions
  • One case study written assignment
  • One work product written assignment

The test lasts for three hours and the minimum pass score is 220. The fee to take the test is $105.

Candidates seeking licensure as an ESL educator must also pass the OAE Content Assessment: English to Speakers of Other Languages (021) which is also computer-based and again last for three hours. The test consists of 150 multiple-choice questions and the minimum pass score is 220. The fee for this test is also $105.

Both tests are administered by Pearson Vue and applications to take the tests can be made through the Pearson Vue website at any time of the year.

Step 3: Apply for an Initial Teaching License with Endorsement

Once the testing has been successfully completed, candidates may apply for an initial teaching license by way of a new credential application. The initial teaching license in Ohio is known as the Resident Educator License and is issued for four years and is non-renewable.

Applications can only be made online through the Ohio Department of Education's Security Application For Enterprise (SAFE) portal. Applicants will need to register for a SAFE account and complete the online application. The application fee for the Resident Educator License is $160. There is a $20 fee to apply for the addition of a license area.

Once teachers have obtained their Resident Educator License they should complete the Resident Educator Program which assists new teachers with mentoring and professional development. Upon completion of this four-year program and the Resident Educator Summative Assessment, teachers can apply for a Professional Educator License which is issued for five years and is renewable.

ESL Teacher Certification Resources

Please follow the links below to access our resources for helping ESL teacher candidates study for their teacher certification exams:

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