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Applied Linguistics with TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) - MA

Kent's MA in Applied Linguistics with TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) provides teachers with advanced knowledge of linguistics and language pedagogy, informed by research and scholarship, to enhance, develop and inform an understanding of language learning and classroom practice.

The programme is offered by the Department of English Language & Linguistics, and benefits from staff expertise in areas of linguistics that inform classroom practice (such as syntax, morphology, semantics, pragmatics and phonetics), raising awareness of these fields and applying them to TESOL. Students gain an understanding of the theory, methodology and interdisciplinary nature of TESOL, as well as a firm foundation in linguistics.           

Practical teaching opportunities are a feature of the programme, including teaching to peer groups and international students. There is also the opportunity to observe language classes.

Students begin by studying eight modules across the Autumn and Spring terms, before writing a 12,000-word dissertation or teaching portfolio over the summer, supervised by an expert in the department.

The programme is an ideal for teachers aiming to improve their understanding and abilities in communicating across the barriers of language and those who wish to build an international dialogue.

About the Department of English Language and Linguistics

ELL is a dynamic and growing department with a vibrant research culture. We specialise in experimental and theoretical linguistics. In particular, our interests focus on quantitative and experimental research in speech and language processing, variation and acquisition, but also cover formal areas such as syntax, as well as literary stylistics. In addition to English and its varieties, our staff work in French, German, Greek, Romani, Korean, Spanish and Russian.

Staff and postgraduates are members of the Centre for Language and Linguistic Studies (CLLS), a research centre that seeks to promote interdisciplinary linguistic research. We also have links with research networks outside Kent, and are involved with national and international academic associations including the Linguistics Association of Great Britain, the British Association of Academic Phoneticians, the Linguistic Society of America, the Association for French Language Studies and the Poetics and Linguistics Association.

Course structure

The programme starts with two core linguistics modules (Sounds and Structure), the choice between two modules (Meaning or Research Skills) and a module on language awareness for teachers (Language Awareness and Analysis for TESOL) so that you have a firm grasp of the linguistic bases of language teaching.

In the spring term the focus is on how languages are learned (Second Language Acquisition), how you can improve classroom technique (Methods and Practice of TESOL), plan for your students' needs (Course and Syllabus Design for TESOL) and the option between two modules (Materials Evaluation and Development for TESOL or one of the linguistics modules offered that term). 

Students can choose to do either a Research Dissertation or a Teaching Portfolio in the summer term. The dissertation will be an opportunity to plan and develop a piece of empirical research which can be of direct relevance to your current or planned teaching situation. The teaching portfolio functions both as the culmination of the year's work on the program and as preparation for students' professional development as language teachers.

Assessment

Modules are typically assessed by a 3-4,000-word essay, but assessment patterns can include practical/experimental work, report and proposal writing, critiques, problem solving and seminar presentations. You also complete a 12-15,000-word research dissertation on a topic agreed with your supervisor.

Programme aims

- Provide TESOL practitioners with advanced knowledge of linguistics related to language pedagogy, informed by research and scholarship, which will enhance, develop and inform their understanding of language learning and classroom practice.

- To produce graduates who will contribute locally, nationally and internationally to the TESOL community.

- To prepare students to be more effective in the TESOL classroom.

- To provide students with teaching and training which is informed by research, scholarship, practice and experience.

Research areas

Alongside our research centre below, we also have links with research networks outside Kent, and are involved with national and international academic associations including the Linguistics Association of Great Britain, the British Association of Academic Phoneticians, the Linguistic Society of America, the Association for French Language Studies and the Poetics and Linguistics Association.

The Department organises seminars with local and invited speakers that take place throughout the year. Additionally the Centre for Language and Linguistics also organises various events from talks to symposia

- Linguistics Lab

The Linguistics Lab is equipped for research in speech acoustics (including recording equipment, studio, software for speech analysis), speech and language processing and acquisition (including eye-tracking, DMDX and E-prime), and general data analysis (MS Office Suite, Statistica, R, and Matlab running on both PCs and Macs). Members of the English Language and Linguistics department also have access to the School of European Culture and Languages (SECL) recording studio and multimedia labs which can be used both for research and teaching.

- Centre for Language and Linguistics

English Language and Linguistics is the main contributor to the Centre for Language and Linguistics. Founded in 2007, the Centre promotes interdisciplinary collaboration in linguistic research and teaching. Membership embraces not just the members of English Language and Linguistics but also other SECL members with an interest in the study of language, as well as researchers in philosophy, computing, psychology and anthropology, reflecting the many and varied routes by which individuals come to a love of language and an interest in the various disciplines and subdisciplines of linguistics.

Careers

Postgraduate work in English Language and Linguistics prepares you for a range of careers where an in-depth understanding of how language functions is essential. These include speech and language theory, audiology, teaching, publishing, advertising, journalism, public relations, company training, broadcasting, forensic and computational work, and the civil or diplomatic services.

Find out how to apply at https://www.kent.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/apply/


Visit the Applied Linguistics with TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) - MA page on the University of Kent website for more details!

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