The SITE certificate is a two-semester, 25-unit interdisciplinary program designed to prepare speakers of French, German and Spanish to teach foreign and/or heritage languages.This interdisciplinary certificate program contributes to enhancing the global dimension of a liberal arts and science education at Sonoma State University in the 21st century. This program brings together international exchange students and current Sonoma State students on our campus to make Sonoma State a community where students become global citizens both at home and abroad as they learn to participate in an ever more interconnected, diverse and complex world. This program offers a unique and innovative focus: It incorporates the teacher education mission of the CSU into Sonoma States’ liberal arts and science education.  This program places linguistic and cultural diversity at the core of the students’ learning experience. Students currently enrolled at SSU, who are exceptionally proficient in French, German, or Spanish, may also be considered for this program.

Each year, the Department of Modern Languages & Literatures recruits a small cohort of motivated students who are interested in becoming language teachers.  Participants will enroll in MLL 450: Foreign Language Teaching Seminar for 4 units. As an integral component of this course, they will act as a peer facilitator for small groups of language learners (4-8 students) enrolled in French, German or Spanish language courses. See below for more information on the MLL 450 course requirements.
In addition, participants will take courses in teacher education and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) in the School of Education, as well as courses in the English Department (see list of SITE courses below).
For more information about the program and application procedures, please contact the Department of Modern Languages at (707) 664-2351 or
Required Courses
During the academic year, SITE certificate students will enroll in MLL 450 in Fall and Spring (8 units total) AND select the following number of approved SITE courses (see list of SITE courses below) for at least 17 units distributed among English, Education and TESOL:


Minimum Units

Minimum number of courses

Seminar and Practicum in FL Learning and Teaching (MLL 450)

8 units (4 units in Fall AND 4 units in Spring)

TWO courses (ONE Fall, ONE Spring)


8 units

TWO courses


3 units

ONE course


6 units

TWO courses

With prior advisor approval, selected relevant courses may be substituted for the above requirements.
Total number of units for certificate: 25 units
Prerequisites: International students must meet the university’s TOEFL minimum score. Applicants must have upper division status, or equivalent at their home university, by the time they begin the program. Preference will be given to students with a demonstrated interest in teacher education or language teaching.
Students will:

Assessment of the above outcomes will include professor evaluation of students’ participation, written assignments and final paper in the MLL 450 seminar, as well as a year-end summative presentation by the SITE Certificate students. A review of the students’ progress will be made at the end of Fall semester to assure adequate mid-year progress based on grades in the Required Courses. All courses in the SITE Certificate are for-credit academic courses.

MLL 450: Seminar in Foreign Language Pedagogy
Course Description:
Combining research and theory on language learning with hands-on teaching practice, this course is designed to teach students to facilitate intensive language learning among their peers in a small-group setting. Students study the basics of language learning and teaching while also engaging in practical work as a Peer Language Facilitator (PLF) for language learners enrolled in lower division classes. The PLF will meet with small conversation/activity groups (4-8 students) for 3 hours each week in the Language and Learning Culture Center.
Basis upon which grade will be assigned:
MLL 450 must be taken for a letter grade, which will be given based on:

Course Requirements:
Students enrolled in MLL 450 (2-4 units) will be assigned as Peer Language Learning Facilitators to one of the lower-division lab language classes at SSU (101L, 102L, 200L/201L, 202L, 210L) and meet with students in small conversation/activity groups (4-8 language learners) from one of those classes for 1- 3 hours each week in the Language and Culture Learning Center. A maximum of fifteen candidates will be selected for any given semester. Preference may be given to students who agree to participate for two semesters.
Students enrolled in MLL 450 will have a one hour-seminar each week during which they will discuss relevant aspects of language learning and teaching. Topics will include basic theoretical and practical notions of language teaching and learning related to Second Language Acquisition; small group interaction; focused themes on technology and learning; and the role of varied texts and activities in conversation groups. The value of cultural and linguistic diversity in language teaching and the needs of diverse learners will also be discussed. Students will develop and practice the activities that they will use in their teaching sessions.
MLL 450 Students will work with the lower-division course instructors and the professor to make sure that the activities enhance the regular classroom instruction and curriculum. When possible, the peer facilitators will observe a portion of the assigned language class. They will assist and assess the progress of the learners, as well as keep records of their students’ attendance. During finals week, each student will give a short summative presentation to the professor and the other MLL 450 students, as well as turn in a reflective paper on what they have learned.
Students who successfully participate in the Peer Language Facilitator/SITE program for two semesters will also receive a certificate of participation.
For additional questions, please contact the Department of Modern Languages & Literatures

Sonoma International Teaching Experience (SITE) courses in Teacher Education, English Teaching and TESOL at Sonoma State University, California/U.S.A.

Enrollment in the SITE courses below may be based on course availability, class size limits, departmental approval, and fulfillment of prerequisites. Many of the courses below are not available each semester. The courses marked FALL ONLY are available only in the fall semester each year. SPRING ONLY courses are available only in the spring semester. FALL & SPRING courses are offered each semester every year. Check the Sonoma State University General Catalog ( and the websites below for more information and updates regarding course descriptions, prerequisites and availability.
School of Education (

Single subject Credential courses, with permission from the Chair of Curriculum Studies & Secondary Education/CSSE ( )

Courses for Future Language Teachers in the Department of English (

Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages/TESOL, with permission from theTESOL Advisor (