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Department of Linguistics

The Community ESL Teaching Assistants (CETA) Program

What is CETA?

Community ESL Teaching Assistants (CETA) is a volunteer-based program for linguistics students to get teaching experience through serving as teaching assistants in adult ESL classes. CETA provides training and start-up materials for volunteers.

CETA has been designed to benefit everyone involved. A partnership between the Linguistics Department and Fresno Adult School (FAS) was formed to get Fresno State Linguistics BA and MA TESOL students into the ESL classroom and getting hands-on experience. This is a great opportunity to maximize career readiness and apply education into practice. Our veteran volunteers can tell you that it's a very rewarding experience as the students appreciate receiving extra attention.

By combining the efforts of Adult School teachers & CSUF TESOL students, Fresno Adult School ESL students develop English language skills to independently navigate through society.

Three parties benefit:

  • University TESL students gain experience by working hands-on.
  • Adult school ESL students receive more level-specific attention and improve their ESL skills.
  • With the class broken into smaller groups, adult school ESL teachers are able to manage their responsibilities more effectively, given that volunteers can provide support in classes, many of which are large and multilevel.

We are now in our 4th semester of the project. Over the past 2 years, we have had a total of 21 Fresno State student volunteers with each spending anywhere from 2 - 6hrs in the classroom per week. We have serviced 13 locations. And with the class size ranging around 25 students per class, this project has affected approximately 350 ESL students from our community, including a recently arrived group of Syrian refugees.

Where? Volunteers are placed in ESL classes that meet in different Fresno Unified schools.