Master of Arts in TESOL

ESC ClassThe rapid increase in the numbers of American citizens whose first language is not English, as well as the continuing internationalization of American businesses, indicates a growing need for professionals in commerce, technology, education, and language instruction who have advanced theoretical and practical knowledge of how languages (especially second languages) are acquired and function.

The 36 credit MA TESOL prepares individuals from a variety of backgrounds for teaching English to non-native speakers. The program emphasizes competency in the theory and teaching practices, including assessment, involved in second language acquisition, and provides supporting coursework in linguistics and grammar. All students are expected to acquire practical experience during the course of the program, most typically achieved through a practicum.

The student may select up to 12 credits of elective coursework based on individual need and interest. Students may include one elective or choose to add a certificate in the world region in which they plan to work.  

In May 2012, this master's program was approved by the Indiana Department of Education for professional EL Certification.  Currently-licensed Indiana teachers who wish to add an English Learners (EL) professional certification to their teaching license may do so by completing this master's degree program or the TESOL Certificate.  


Applicants must meet all the admission requirements of the Graduate School, including a grade point average of at least 3.0, transcripts, two letters of reference, and a personal essay/statement. Applicants should also have at least 15 credits of college English coursework (e.g., a minor in the field of English). International applicants who are non-native English speakers must have an undergraduate English major or its equivalent, and a TOEFL score of at least 83 (or an IELTS of 6.5 (with no individual score below 6.0), or a Gateway English course with a grade of A- or higher). 


Core Curriculum 24 credits
ENGL 543  Introduction to Linguistics 3 cr
ENGL 544  Sociolinguistics: Language Across Cultures 3 cr
ENGL 568  TESOL Theory & Methods 3 cr
ENGL 569  TESOL Theory & Practices 3 cr
ENGL 612  ESL Curriculum & Assessment 3 cr
ENGL 613  ESL Grammar 3 cr
ENGL 614  Seminar in ESL 3 cr
ENGL 685  Practicum 3 cr
Electives 12 credits
ENGL 531  Advanced Composition 3 cr
ENGL 541  History of English Language 3 cr
ENGL 542  Modern English Grammar 3 cr
ENGL 580  Topics in Writing 3 cr
ENGL 601  New Literacies, Cultures, & Technologies of Writing 3 cr
ENGL 602  Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL) 3 cr
ENGL 686  Internship 1-3 cr
Related courses as approved by the department or advisor. 3 cr

Other credit-bearing courses or experiences related to TESOL will be offered periodically depending on need or interest. Possible options include training in English for Special Purposes, coursework in managing TESOL programs, and internships throughout the USA and abroad.

Financial Considerations
Students may be surprised to discover the affordable tuition rate at Valparaiso University.  Please visit the Student Financial Services website for current tuition rates. Financial aid may be available for students taking 6 credits or more during fall and spring semesters.

For more information about the Master of Arts in English Studies and Communication program
To learn more about the Master of Arts in English Studies and Communication, visit their department website at

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Request more information from the Office of the Graduate School. 

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