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Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) - MA / PgDip

    Faculty of Arts & Humanities Logo
  • Study Type

    Full time & Part time available

  • Subject Areas


  • Start Date

    See Course

  • Course Duration

    Full-time: 1 year; Part-time: 2 years

  • Course Type

    MA, PgDip

  • Course Fees


  • Last Updated

    19 June 2019


As the generally accepted highest academic degree in the field, an MA TESOL demonstrates knowledge and understanding of English language teaching, a familiarity with a range of relevant literature and an ability to research and to present ideas on related subjects.

Participating in the programme means becoming part of an established professional community, reflecting on and sharing your experience and developing expertise.

You will:

develop your teaching expertise and an understanding of many approaches to teaching English as a foreign, second or other language

  • develop your teaching expertise and an understanding of many approaches to teaching English as a foreign, second or other language
  • develop an ability to present an argument in an academic context
  • learn how to carry out research related to many aspects of TESOL
  • exchange views and experience with international colleagues

The course offers:

  • a taught first stage
  • a second dissertation stage with an individual tutor
  • a substantial core of modules and a variety of elective modules
  • the chance to obtain TEFL Q or TEFL I status, according to British Council criteria, through a Teaching Practice module
  • as an alternative to Teaching Practice, a Practical Project module, providing an opportunity to develop an original product with practical application in a field of TESOL


The MA in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) is a professional development qualification designed both for practising teachers of English as a foreign or second language (the Professional route) and for graduates who wish to begin a career in English language teaching (the Fundamentals route).

It allows both practising teachers and graduates who are relatively new to the field to develop and to further their professional competence alongside an understanding of the theoretical implications of the practice of ELT.

The programme also includes a Teaching Practice element, leading to professionally valuable TEFL Q or TEFL I status, according to British Council criteria - or an alternative Practical Project module, for students who prefer not to take Teaching Practice.


In Stage 1, the core components are

  • Exploring English Language Teaching: Past, Present & Future
  • Language Systems & Appropriate Pedagogy
  • Second Language Learning
  • Teaching Practice or Practical Project
  • Research Methods in TESOL
  • Contemporary Topics in TESOL

Content for this component responds to student demand for:

  • Cultural Issues
  • Drama in ELT
  • Course Design
  • Assessment
  • Using Technology
  • Young Learners
  • Materials & Task Design
  • Teaching Refugees
  • Special Educational Needs in TESOL

In Stage 2, with the support and guidance of an individual Supervisor, you write a Dissertation on a topic of your choice in the field of TESOL.


As you would expect of an academic programme at this level, Canterbury Christ Church University boasts experienced teaching staff, a reputation for academic excellence, and a balance of theory and practice – plus a keen interest in applications in the real world of ELT. 

We also pride ourselves on a warm, welcoming atmosphere, a strong international community spirit, and commitment to involving students in the development of the programme.

Thanks to input from students, we offer a programme with routes designed both for students with and for students without previous teaching experience, and a course of supervised Teaching Practice for all students who want it. With this included in your programme, you will graduate as TEFL- qualified or TEFL- initiated, according to British Council criteria, further enhancing your value to future employers.

Alternatively, you can take the Practical Project module, an opportunity to create and develop an original product (for example, a sequence of teaching materials, an IT-based learning resource, or reference material for teachers …) with practical, real-world application in a field of TESOL.

If you are already TEFL-Qualified (with a Cambridge DELTA or equivalent), you may apply for exemptions from 3 modules. Typically, this allows you a ‘fast-track’ programme, beginning your studies in November instead of September.

From observation of experienced teachers in the classroom to programme-specific research training, you will be given the support you need, including the university’s free, dedicated Student Support Service to develop your academic English.


With an MA TESOL, your career prospects are enhanced, with paths into

  • primary, secondary or tertiary school management abroad
  • senior, advisory, management and leadership positions, e.g. as Directors of Studies or Academic Directors in local and national English language schools
  • work with Departments of Ministries of Education, such as curriculum and syllabus design, materials writing and assessment
  • ELT publishing
  • teacher training
  • testing and writing for examination boards
  • academic research


Teaching is delivered through lectures, seminars, group work, practical work related to teaching, and guided independent study. Input sessions are generally organised to make the most of the variety of backgrounds and learning and teaching contexts that students bring to the programme, and all are encouraged to share experience and insights.

Teaching staff are all widely experienced professionals in the world of ELT, with backgrounds in teaching, teacher training, course design, assessment and ELT management, and a variety of published work and specialist areas of research and interest.


Tuition fees for all courses which last more than one academic year are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

Government loans of up to £10,609 are available for some postgraduate Master’s courses for students starting their course from 1 August 2018. Loans are subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria.

The rules around course eligibility mean that in some cases it may depend on how you are studying (full-time or part-time) as to whether you can apply for a postgraduate loan. To check whether your course is eligible, you can   or call 01227 923 948.

Read more about  postgraduate masters student loans.

Visit the Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) - MA / PgDip page on the Canterbury Christ Church University website for more details!




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