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Course content

A TESOL MA can enhance the career prospects of a second or foreign language teacher and contribute to professional development. Students will explore the latest developments in the theory, policy and practice of TESOL, working with leading experts in the field and other MA students from around the world.

About this degree

This programme will give you the opportunity to discuss and debate issues related to teaching second and foreign languages. You will also develop your knowledge of how theory can inform practice in second and foreign language education. You will deepen your understanding of key concepts and ideas, and develop your ability to select, design and evaluate language teaching materials.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of one core module (30 credits), three optional modules (90 credits) and a dissertation (60 credits).

Core module

The core module for the MA TESOL is Fundamentals of Second and Foreign Language Teaching (30 credits).

  • Fundamentals of Second and Foreign Language Teaching

Optional modules

  • Bilingualism and Multilingualism
  • Discourse, Society and Culture
  • English in Diverse World Contexts
  • Language at Work: Communication in Professional, Institutional and Cultural Contexts
  • Language and Identity
  • Language Testing and Assessment
  • Materials Development for Language Teaching
  • Multimodal Communication
  • Second Language Acquisition
  • Sociolinguistics and Sociocultural Theory
  • Early Childhood Education
  • Education and Development in Asia
  • Education Traditions and Systems in Europe
  • Internet Cultures: Theory and Practice
  • Language Development
  • Learning and Teaching with Technologies
  • Literacy Development
  • Perspectives on Adult Literacy, Language and Numeracy
  • Technology and Education Beyond the Classroom
  • Theoretical Foundations of Educational Ideas


All students submit a 2,500-word research proposal and a 15,000-word dissertation.

Teaching and learning

Teaching combines various forms, such as lectures, workshops, projects, student presentations, and student-led discussions. Within sessions, students often engage in individual, pair and group task which are then fed back to the leanly. Assessment is by coursework and presentation. Various coursework types are used as appropriate to the module.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) MA


Graduates of this programme are currently working across a broad range of areas. Some are working as English language teachers from early years to higher education, while others have jobs as senior managers and directors of study in the private sector and in state schools. Graduates can also be found working as textbook writers, editors, publishers, education journalists, NGO and development officers, education consultants, policy advisers, researchers and PhD students.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • English Teacher, King's College London
  • Language School Director, LSI (Language Studies International)
  • Secondary School Teacher (English Language), Fuji Higashi Senior High School
  • Teaching Fellow, UCL
  • PhD Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, Institute of Education, University of London (IOE)


The programme provides graduates with a rigorous, research-based education based on the latest developments in the area of TESOL. This will give them a natural advantage when applying for teaching or other TESOL-related posts. We also help students focus on employability skills whilst they are here, for example, through departmental talks and other networking opportunities within the department and the wider UCL community.

Why study this degree at UCL?

This TESOL degree combines research-informed learning with the opportunity to reflect on and enhance your own professional practice. You will receive strong support throughout from our team of tutors all of whom have international experience in EFL and ESL.

You will also become part of one of the oldest and most well-known centres for English language teacher development, and will have the opportunity to work with leading researchers from the UCL Centre for Applied Linguistics as well as MA students from all around the world.

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






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