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

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  • Study Type

    Full time available

  • Subject Areas


  • Start Date


  • Course Duration

    1 year full time

  • Course Type


  • Course Fees


Our MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) is a 12-month full-time taught MA programme designed for students who plan to teach English as a second/foreign language in the UK or internationally or to do research on the teaching, learning or assessment of English as a second/foreign language.

The programme is designed primarily for people with little or no prior experience of English language teaching, but who have a relevant first degree (English Language/ Linguistics or Education with a substantial English component) and who intend to be an English teacher or researcher.

The MA TESOL is an academic programme of study and not a teacher training course. Therefore, it provides a foundation in Applied Linguistics, Approaches to English Teaching and Research Methods on which later training in practical teaching can build. Theories of language acquisition and language teaching are explored, with the emphasis on how such theories may be practically applied; however, there is no teaching practicum as part of this programme.

The programme aims to:
-Provide an introduction to current issues and key trends in language learning and teaching in a global context
-Develop students' knowledge of Applied Linguistics and approaches to language teaching that will facilitate better teaching practice
-Provide basic research skills that students will need in order to (1) be able to engage critically with the language teaching and learning literature they read, and (2) carry out their own research project
-Help provide the knowledge and skills for those who want to conduct doctoral research in TESOL, Applied Linguistics or related areas


Term 1
-TESOL Methods (20 credits)
-Research Methods in Language Learning and Teaching (20 credits)

One option module from a list of about 10 options (20 credits). These may include:
-Citizenship Education
-Cross-linguistic influences in second language acquisition
-Discourse analysis & language teaching
-Education and social justice
-Evaluating ESOL classroom practice
-Intercultural communication in education
-Learning and Teaching Second Language Reading
-Motivation in education
-Teaching and assessing speaking skills
-Teaching and assessing writing skills
-Teaching and learning in schools
-Teaching World English
-Topics in second language acquisition

Term 2
-English Linguistics (20 credits)

One option module from a list of about 10 options (20 credits). These may include:
-Approaches to English language teaching
-Contemporary issues in teaching
-Cross-cultural perspectives on language and discourse
-Developmental psycholinguistics
-Learning and teaching grammar in a second language
-The practice of English language teaching
-Pragmatics: language, meaning and communication
-Psychology of language and language learning
-Qualitative and quantitative data analysis
-Teaching and learning citizenship and global education
-Teaching English for academic purposes
-Testing and assessment in English language teaching

Term 3
-Planning and Communicating Research (20 credits). These classes are spread over Terms 2 and 3

The third term and the summer is devoted to writing a dissertation based on a small-scale research study (60 credits), to be submitted by early September.


The MA in TESOL programme is proud of its international standing and attracts high quality students and experienced academics from the UK and around the globe. With this experience, we are ideally suited for supporting our home and international students alike.

Learning is maximised through the use of a variety of teaching approaches which are student-centred and research informed, including lectures, small group seminars, tutorials, and through the use of our online virtual learning environment. The Education Department also has a vibrant guest speaker programme and students are encouraged to attend and participate in lectures and presentations from many key researchers in the field of Language Education and TESOL. Students are also able to take advantage of additional English language lessons and study skills workshops should they need them.

Students are assigned a personal supervisor who they will have on-going contact with throughout the duration of the course through face-to-face meetings and through email contact. The supervisor provides academic and pastoral support throughout the course. The Department of Education is highly regarded within the university for its teaching and supervision and has won many awards at university level to reflect this.


Our graduates find employment in a wide range of sectors within education, but also in journalism, information management, human resources and other careers.

Many become English language teachers all around the world, in private language schools, state schools, universities and other organisations requiring English language instruction.

Others find employment opportunities in areas of course and syllabus design, and materials writing in large and small scale publishing houses.

Our postgraduate courses can be used to complement teacher training/development programmes and voluntary or paid roles which focus on the more practical elements of teaching. However, other than our PGCE, our courses are not teacher training programmes in themselves.

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






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