Certificate in Second Language Acquisition (SLA) Completion Instructions

Certificate in Second Language Acquisition (SLA)

Completion Instructions

What is the Certificate in Second Language Acquisition (SLA) program?

The Certificate in Second Language Acquisition (SLA) is a new program offered by the Center for Language Study (CLS) in collaboration with the Yale Teaching Center (YTC). This program is separate from the Certificate of College Teaching Preparation (CCTP) offered by the YTC and is specifically designed for Yale graduate students in departments of language and literature to provide a comprehensive training program in foreign language teaching methodology. Students in language and literature departments who are currently enrolled in the CCTP may either complete that certificate or transfer to the SLA Certificate. The SLA Certificate will provide a solid foundation in second language acquisition, language teaching methodology, and applied linguistics. The SLA certificate program builds on existing resources and training opportunities available from the YTC and the CLS and covers both the theoretical principles and the practical pedagogy training that is essential for a career in a language-related field.

Upon completing the SLA Certificate, you will:

  • understand key concepts from SLA theory 
  • be familiar with task-based and communicative approaches to L2 teaching and be able to integrate these into your teaching practice
  • have completed a language teaching portfolio documenting your college teaching experience and philosophy, in a format that can be used in academic job applications

Upon completion of your requirements, the Yale Teaching Center will award a certificate, along with a notation listed on your official transcript.

Who is eligible?

Only students enrolled in a PhD program in the Yale Graduate School of Arts and Sciences are eligible.

The SLA Certificate program supports teaching fellows throughout their years at Yale, and each element of the program supports effective teaching at each stage of a graduate student’s experience. We recommend, therefore, that people register for the program when they start their Yale teaching.

At this time, post-docs, visiting scholars, and students in master’s degree or professional school programs are not eligible for participation in the SLA Certificate, although they are invited to attend our programs, and personalized, non-official documentation of their participation is available upon request.

How do I sign up?

Please contact Nelleke Van Deusen-Scholl at the Center for Language Study.

Requirements Overview

A. Two semesters of teaching at Yale University
B. A minimum of five (5) language class observations of others, with a report on your observations:

  1. Two peer observations
  2. Two observations of a senior language instructor
  3. One observation of a language that you do not understand

C. A minimum of three observations of your language class, with a report from the observer:

  1. At least one each by a senior language instructor and a peer

D. Training and development

  1. CLS Pedagogy Workshop
  2. Fundamentals of Language Teaching and Advanced Fundamentals of Language Teaching seminars
  3. Graduate seminar: Principles of Language Teaching and Learning (LING 564)
  4. Professional development activities (10)
  5. Portfolio workshop

E. Completed teaching portfolio

  1. Teaching philosophy statement
  2. Annotated newly developed syllabi
  3. Annotated sample course materials, such as task-based and communicative activities
  4. Annotated lesson plan
  5. Annotated student evaluations

F. Reflective narrative describing your experiences throughout the SLA Certificate Program

G. Exit Interview

H.  Optional: Teaching Video

Download a checklist of requirements here.