MA, ESL with Optional TESOL Graduate Certificate

Study Formats Online, On Campus, Blended

This degree is available 100% online and through on-campus cohorts.

Program Length Variable

The MA in ESL is a 30-credit-hour program that normally takes 20–24 months to complete. The TESOL certificate is a 15-credit-hour program that takes four to six months to complete.

 

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS: In addition to the base program curriculum listed below, international students attending face-to-face classes on the CUC campus are required to take the Seminar in Higher Education, a 3-credit course.

Curriculum: MA in ESL

Courses required for the Illinois endorsement in ESL/Bilingual Education are marked with an asterisk (*).

Courses required for the graduate certificate in adult TESOL are marked with (+).

Foundations of Bilingual and Bicultural Education*

Examination of the historical, philosophical, legal, and ethical foundations of teaching English language learners. Emphasis given to the development of current educational policies and effective instructional practices of educating all language minority students. Includes 5 hours of fieldwork.

Cross-Cultural Studies: Teaching the Limited English Proficient

Analysis of the cultural, social, psychological, structurial, and sociopolitical processes effecting cross-cultural learning in schools and the larger society.

Language and Linguistics*

Analysis of the symbolic systems and the cultural bases of English in relationship to other languages through exploration of structure and history, language development and variation, and communicative competence in the context of language use. Examination of L1 and L2 literacy development. Includes 5 hours of fieldwork.

Teaching English as a Second Language*

Application of major theories and research to help ELLs develop language and literacy in the content areas. Development and implementation of standards-based instructional strategies and assessment procedures adapted to ELLs at varying levels of language and literacy development in the content areas. Includes 30 hours of fieldwork.

Methods and Materials for Teaching Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Students*

Exploration and analysis of relevant K-12 pedagogical approaches, methods, and strategies needed to convey to a diverse population state and professional standards-based curricula. Development, adaptation and evaluation of materials for implementation in lesson planning and assessment for teaching English to speakers of other languages to particular groups of different ages, ability levels and cultural backgrounds. Inclusion of strategies that foster both language acquisition and academic achievement in speaking, reading, writing, and listening. Includes 30 hours of fieldwork.

Assessment of Language Minority Students*

Comprehensive overview of current developments in the assessment of English language learners in the context of school learning and academic achievement. How to structure assessment procedures to reflect current research understandings, best classroom practices, and state and federal mandates are emphasized. Analysis of purposes and forms of assessment, barriers to fair assessment of ELLs, and designing and adapting authentic assessment tools for formal and informal methods of assessing English proficiency and academic development in English at varying levels. Includes 20 hours of fieldwork.

TESOL Curriculum Planning and Methodology+

Introduction to curriculum theories and their application toward the process of curriculum development, from needs analysis to course evaluation, utilizing a needs-based, learner-centered approach to selecting, adapting, and designing curricula, courses, and materials. Emphasis is on ESOL curricular design and appropriate instructional planning to address the socio-cultural, physical, and educational needs of students in Pre-K-12 and university settings. Attention is given to English for academic purposes and content-based instruction.

Applied Philology and World Englishes+

Familiarity with both standard and non-standard varieties of English in countries where English is spoken as a first language, as an official language, and as an influential foreign language. Examination of the conditions and contexts surrounding the development and expansion of English as a global language through historical, linguistic, social, cultural, political, and literary concerns. Selected studies of socio-linguistic variables, language change, code-switching, and universal grammar to inform discussion of such variation as found in African-American English, Indian English, British dialects, and English-based pidgins and creoles. Will also include the fundamentals of philology in applied areas.

Teacher as Researcher

Principles of teacher research. Focus on development of basic research skills to carry out action research, self-study, or other practitioner research projects with the goal of improved teacher practice. Skills for interpreting published research are also emphasized.

 

Capstone Experience

Seminar in Reflective Practice

Implementation of an action research, self-study or other practitioner research projects. Data collection and analysis to inform researchers' perspective as it relates to pertinent educational issues. As a result, the research will be presented in a final formal format to serve as the project capstone.

A master’s capstone is required for all master of arts candidates. This culminating project highlights the candidate’s mastery of content throughout his or her studies. Capstones are traditionally a summary of work demonstrating overall growth and specific understandings of the professional standards. The capstone serves as a performance-based evaluation and promotes reflective practice. It also demonstrates the professional’s proficiency in integrating technology and his or her ability to interpret theory into practice.

 

Curriculum: TESOL Certificate

Applied Philology and World Englishes

Familiarity with both standard and non-standard varieties of English in countries where English is spoken as a first language, as an official language, and as an influential foreign language. Examination of the conditions and contexts surrounding the development and expansion of English as a global language through historical, linguistic, social, cultural, political, and literary concerns. Selected studies of socio-linguistic variables, language change, code-switching, and universal grammar to inform discussion of such variation as found in African-American English, Indian English, British dialects, and English-based pidgins and creoles. Will also include the fundamentals of philology in applied areas.

TESOL Curriculum Planning and Methodology

Introduction to curriculum theories and their application toward the process of curriculum development, from needs analysis to course evaluation, utilizing a needs-based, learner-centered approach to selecting, adapting, and designing curricula, courses, and materials. Emphasis is on ESOL curricular design and appropriate instructional planning to address the socio-cultural, physical, and educational needs of students in Pre-K-12 and university settings. Attention is given to English for academic purposes and content-based instruction.

Teaching ESL/EFL to Adult Learners

Introduction to adult learning theories and contexts for teaching the adult language learner. Examination of goals, principles and best practices for teaching English as a second or foreign language, and ways to evaluate adults’ second language development. Exploration of the influence of varying backgrounds on adult language learning to promote an effective, communicative language classroom for students of varied ages and levels in various adult language teaching situations.

Second Language Acquisition

Intensive examination of how humans learn second languages. Review of the theories and key concepts of first and second language acquisition. Examines theoretical models and research on such issues as differences between L1 and L2 acquisition, the variables that may affect the language development processes, the effect of age on language acquisition, cognitive factors in second language acquisition, and learner variables. Exploration of socio-cultural factors included.

Issues in Second Language Rhetoric and Composition

Examination of theories and practices underlying the teaching and learning of second language writing. Inquiry into rhetorical, political, linguistic, and pedagogical issues in teaching writing at English language institutes or at the college or university level to learners whose first or strongest language is not English. Emphasis on developing the background necessary to examine and refine one’s pedagogical position on the teaching of academic writing to linguistically and culturally diverse learners that includes English for specific purposes. Attention given to contrastive rhetoric and computer-mediated communication.

 

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