For Immediate Release
Contact: David Jwanier, media relations associate, 610-740-3790

Cedar Crest College's ESL Program Specialist Certificate is PDE Approved  

Allentown, Pa. (December 14, 2012)–The United States consists of more than one-third minority residents, and nearly half of the population under 18 comes from minority families, according to 2009 census figures published in CNNMoney.

The 2011-12 Teacher Shortage Areas Nationwide Listing from the U.S. Department of Education shows that this increasing diversity is creating greater demand for English as a Second Language (ESL) program specialists in many states, including Pennsylvania. In the Keystone State, the shortage in an important issue in many rural and urban school districts.

Cedar Crest's Colleges' ESL Program Specialist Certificate is one of the first in the Lehigh Valley region to gain approval from the Pennsylvania Department of Education under its recently revised requirements. The Cedar Crest program includes a new course focusing on the latest techniques to assess the needs of ESL students, as well as a field experience component, which allows those studying for the certificate to apply their theoretical knowledge in the classroom. Certification is required for anyone teaching ESL.

Participants in the 17-credit program study a range of topics including:

  • the relationship between cultures and effective teaching strategies
  • the cognitive stages of language development, basic linguistics and the structure of English
  • the impact of being a non-native English speaker on the learning process and socialization in the classroom

"With the ever-growing population of English language learners throughout the United States–and notably in the Lehigh Valley–programs such as these are becoming more and more critical to the success of our schools and our students," said Jill Purdy, Ed.D., director of the Cedar Crest College ESL Program Specialist certificate.

The program includes class lecture, discussion, research, presentations and practical application projects. Students may enroll and begin taking courses in January. For more information, contact Jill Purdy, Ed.D., program director, at jepurdy@cedarcrest.edu or call 610-740-3770.

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