Bi-Lingual Certification Program through Canisius College

A bilingual educator teaches academic content in two languages, in a native and secondary language, with varying amounts of each language. A tremendous need exists for skilled teachers in the areas of bilingual education. Increasing the number of trained and certified teachers in the field will help serve English language learner (ELL) students better and will ease the burden on existing teachers. Acquiring this in-demand skill set helps teachers attain and retain quality positions in a competitive job market. Our online Bilingual Education Extension Program is an innovative online post graduate certificate program through Canisius College. This program is BOCES Intensive Teacher Institute (ITI) approved and is designed to prepare teachers who already have initial certification, a master’s degree, and foreign language proficiency, to meet New York State requirements for the Bilingual Education Extension. While employment of school teachers is expected to grow 13 percent through 2018, the specific demand for bilingual teachers and/or teachers of English as a Second Language (ESL) is expected to grow even faster as the number of non-English speaking students continues to rise. Working teachers need to maintain full-time employment and continue their education; thus an extension to their teaching certification in bilingual education may be just the right answer!

The Canisius College Bilingual Extension program is entirely online with three start points during the year. It is a 15-credit hour program that meets New York State requirements for a Bilingual Education Extension for classroom teachers. Candidates with an MS in Special Education may transfer in assessment course work, leaving only 12 credits to complete. Graduates of the Bilingual Extension program will be eligible to take the Bilingual Education Assessment (BEA) exam for bilingual certification.


This program can be completed in less than one year.


If a student works for an approved bilingual school or agency, the school or agency can nominate that student. With nomination, a student will pay a total of $3,500 for the 12-credit bilingual program. Without nomination, the cost of the program is approximately $7,500.