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Course content

A specialised distance MSc in Applied Linguistics and TESOL/MFL

The MSc ALLT is a degree aimed at professionals of TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) or modern foreign languages, which is taught primarily via distance/online learning. This innovative two-year part-time course offers a cutting-edge introduction to the linguistic and pedagogic knowledge and skills needed for teaching language in higher education. 

While the concepts covered in the course can be applied to all languages in most contexts, there is a strong opportunity for students to specialize in the teaching of English language in university settings.

A low-residency course, it is characterised by intense online interaction and feedback, using a range of communication media. Its small-group teaching format pursues the Oxford tradition of demanding much of students and giving them much in return. 

Is this course for you?

Are you preparing students for university studies in an English-medium institution? Are you teaching English to students in arts, science or social science subjects who need to access literature in English in their discipline? Are you co-teaching at university level with content lecturers whose first language is not English? Are you aspiring to move on to teaching in one of the many university settings worldwide where English is important? If so, this course offers you a stimulating environment in which you can broaden your knowledge, deepen your understanding and sharpen your skills in contact with current research in applied linguistics.

What prior experience do you need?

Applicants are expected to have English teaching experience (normally at least one year), a willingness to reflect upon their teaching, and a commitment to work very hard undertaking an exciting intellectual endeavour.

How is the course taught?

The course is taught over two academic years, preceded by a week’s residential module in Oxford. Numbers on the course are kept low, to ensure quality of teaching and learning.

There are three distance-taught modules per year, spread over two eight-week terms from October to April. The assessment for each module comprises a take-home examination. In the third term of each year (May to July), students work on a dissertation project.

Students are admitted in the first instance as students on the Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) in Applied Linguistics for Language Teaching. If you complete all the PGDip modules you may then progress to the MSc, subject to a satisfactory dissertation research proposal. You will then matriculate in absentia in Trinity term of your second year and complete your dissertation during that term, under the supervision of a member of the applied linguistics group.

Who teaches the course?

The tutor for this course is Dr. Heath Rose. Heath is an experienced teacher educator, having coordinated the M.Phil. in English Language Teaching at Trinity College Dublin before coming to Oxford, and previously having worked on The University of Sydney’s M.Ed in TESOL. Heath has been engaged in English Language Teaching since 1997, and has worked with students in university settings since 2003. In delivering the course, he combines this practical experience with his research background in second language teaching and learning. Heath is the co-author of Introducing Global Englishes (Routledge), and the forthcoming books Global Englishes for Language Teaching (Cambridge University Press), and Doing Research in Applied Linguistics (Routledge).

Heath will be supported by other lecturers and tutors in Oxford's applied linguistics research group, as well as a teaching assistant. This means that for each module there will always be two of three academics working with students and helping with learning questions and technical questions.


Visit the MSc in Applied Linguistics for Language Teaching page on the University of Oxford website for more details!

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