As of 2017, 1.75 Billion people speak English worldwide—and that number has grown since then and is expected to continue to grow well into the next decade. 1.75 Billion. Almost a quarter of the global population already, and more are being added to that total every day, which is expected to finally exceed 2 Billion by the spring of 2020.
This growth comes from two places: 1) the growth of native-English-speaking nations, such as the United States, which is expected to reach a population of 350 Million in 2025; and 2) the explosive growth of English as a supplementary language in many of the other countries and cultures across the globe—and it is this second reason that there has been an accompanying explosion in the need for Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) teachers. The growth of international business, travel, and education programs means education that there is a huge number of school throughout the world looking to hire fluent English speakers every year to teach English, and here are just a few of the reasons why:
- 100,000 TESOL-related teaching positions open every year, with California employing the most ESL teachers in the United States.
- The number of English language learners in China is at least as large as the entire U.S. native English-speaking population and has become the largest English-speaking population in the world.
- Believe it or not, ESL speakers outnumber native English speakers 2:1 worldwide.
- And this does not account for the possibility of the growth rate accelerating either.
Additionally, in today’s TESOL classroom, technology is a significant force. Education has permanently changed and has made blended learning—where learning is done partly through online media—a reality where, every month, there are more and more language apps appearing on the market for students who want to learn English on the go, as a way to supplement the instruction they receive in the traditional classroom environment.
However, although there is an increased demand for English teachers, expectations for qualifications and professional credentials have risen too, and it is no longer enough to be just a native English speaker to be a truly effective TESOL teacher. Because of this, TESOL teachers need to not only keep with the latest developments in the field—they have to be actively and continuously developing their skills in order to maximize their students’ English learning.
Are you interested in learning how to teach English as a second language? The California School of Education at Alliant offers both an MA in TESOL and an EdD in TESOL degree programs. For more information contact an Alliant admissions counselor.