Find a course


Education - TESOL


Key facts

Start dates

September 2020 / September 2021

Course length

Full time: 12 months, Harcourt Hill Campus

Part time: Two / three years, dependent on your chosen trajectory - part-time on campus or distance learning.


School of Education


(Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) course is a specialised pathway of our MA Education. The course is for early career teachers seeking a grounding in the core disciplines of TESOL. And those with considerable experience hoping to consolidate or progress into specialist areas of expertise.

You can tailor the course content to your professional context. The course incorporates practical and academic tasks and assignments. And discussion with fellow TESOL practitioners worldwide on cutting edge practice and research. 

You have the option to specialise in the following areas:

  • the multilingual learner
  • English Language Teaching (ELT) materials development
  • English for specific purposes. 


Male student studying with laptop

How to apply

Entry requirements

Specific entry requirements

Applicants must demonstrate that they have a first degree at 2.2 level or above.

TESOL pathway students are required to show evidence of teaching experience of two years in any context, including summer language schools, one-to-one teaching, or teaching assistant roles. Teaching practice acquired through CELTA or DELTA qualifications can count towards this. In some cases, a shorter period of teaching experience can be negotiated where there has been significant TESOL content study.

Please also see the University's general entry requirements.

English language requirements

International students whose native language is not English are required to pass IELTS with an overall grade of 6.5, and each of the four skills should have a minimum grade of 6.0.

Please also see the University's standard English language requirements.

International qualifications and equivalences


English requirements for visas

If you need a student visa to enter the UK you will need to meet the UK Visas and Immigration minimum language requirements as well as the University's requirements. Find out more about English language requirements.

International applications

International students hold a conditional offer until payment of a deposit of £1,000 is received.

Pathways courses for international and EU students

We offer a range of courses to help you meet the entry requirements for your postgraduate course and also familiarise you with university life in the UK.

Take a Pre-Master's course to develop your subject knowledge, study skills and academic language level in preparation for your master's course.

If you need to improve your English language, we offer pre-sessional English language courses to help you meet the English language requirements of your chosen master’s course.

Terms and Conditions of Enrolment

When you accept our offer, you agree to the Terms and Conditions of Enrolment. You should therefore read those conditions before accepting the offer.

Application process

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home/EU full time

Home/EU part time
£725 per single module (new students); £650 per single module (continuing students)

Home/EU distance learning
£725 per single module (new students); £650 per single module (continuing students)

International full time

International part time
£1,580 per single module

International distance learning
£1,580 per single module

Home/EU full time

Home/EU part time
£745 per single module

Home/EU distance learning
£745 per single module

International full time

International part time
£1,655 per single module

International distance learning
£1,655 per single module

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2020 / 21
Home/EU full time

Home/EU part time
£725 per single module (new students); £650 per single module (continuing students)

Home/EU distance learning
£725 per single module (new students); £650 per single module (continuing students)

International full time

International part time
£1,580 per single module

International distance learning
£1,580 per single module

2021 / 22
Home/EU full time

Home/EU part time
£745 per single module

Home/EU distance learning
£745 per single module

International full time

International part time
£1,655 per single module

International distance learning
£1,655 per single module

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:
+44 (0)1865 483088

Fees quoted are for the first year only. If you are studying a course that lasts longer than one year your fees will increase each year.

Financial support and scholarships

There are International Student Scholarships available for 2020 and other scholarships and funding options for postgraduate international students.

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course, if any, are detailed below.

Learning and assessment

The MA Education - TESOL comprises nine modules.

There is a compulsory Research Methods module (20 credits) to support your studies and to prepare you for the Dissertation (60 credits).

You will also take three core compulsory TESOL modules and then choose two modules from the list of optional modules.

Group of students studying in the refectory

Study modules

Taught modules

Compulsory modules

Research Methods (20 credits)

This module will enable you to develop knowledge of a range of research approaches, methods and techniques and to consider ethics in educational research. You will have an opportunity to develop your research skills through preparatory work for the dissertation.  

Language Acquisition and Development: Principles and Practice (20 credits)

This module aims to provide you with a thorough grounding in the theoretical models of both first and second/foreign language acquisition and with psycholinguistic theories of learning and skills acquisition. By the end of this module, you will have reflected on the relevance of different kinds of theoretical knowledge of language learning to your own perceptions of teaching and learning in the classroom, and explored how these theories might have practical impact on learner focused classroom practice.

Descriptions of English (20 credits)

In this module we explore the linguistic description of English with a focus on ‘language in use’. The module looks at how our understanding of the English language relates to how we apply this knowledge in the classroom: what the teacher should ‘know’ about language, what the learner should ‘know’, and how classroom materials such as pedagogic grammars and course books approach this.

ELT Changing Methodologies (20 credits)

This module is designed to give the TESOL practitioner an engagement with some of the key debates current in the profession, such as World Englishes, the impact of corpus on language teaching, and current understandings of the learning process. We draw on the key textbook that has been written specifically for this course by Dr Jane Spiro Changing Methodologies in TESOL (2013).

Optional modules

Teaching English for Specific Purposes (20 credits)

This module builds on your knowledge of ELT, with a more specific focus on accommodating the needs of learners working in specific contexts, such as learning for academic or occupational purposes. The module covers the techniques commonly used in ESP for analysing and matching learner needs to the requirements of their target language context. A variety of ESP approaches to syllabus design, materials development and teaching skills are discussed, with reflection on how such approaches would best inform the needs of learners in specific contexts.

Multilingual Learners (20 credits)

This module focuses on children in English-speaking schools whose first language and culture is not English. It draws on current practice, research and case studies of schools and learners, and examples of current policy and practice in EMI and EAL contexts. The module is designed for the teacher aiming to enhance the learning experience and environment of the multilingual child, and make a difference to policy and practice.

ELT Materials Development (20 credits)

This module explores different modes in which materials are generated for learners, and engages with professional dialogue about the value and effectiveness of teaching resources. You will engage in small-scale market research and materials design projects and will connect with real-world projects in the ELT publishing industry.

MA in Education open pathway

One Option module can also be taken from the main MA in Education open pathway - these modules may include:

  • Developing MA Literacies

  • The Inclusive Curriculum

  • Mind and Brain

  • Diversity and Achievement

Final project

Compulsory modules

Dissertation (60 credits)

Your Dissertation will involve a piece of investigative research and will comprise approximately one third of your degree work. Your dissertation will focus on a research problem of interest to you. It need not be based in an educational setting and may be literature based but should be relevant to educational concerns and the specific subject area on named pathways.

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from that shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.

Learning and teaching

We encourage you to reflect critically by drawing on your background, experience and knowledge.

Teaching methods are:

  • lectures
  • directed reading
  • workshops
  • student and staff-led seminars
  • project work.

Our teaching style is participatory, you will engage in:

  • workshop activities
  • online discussion
  • peer evaluation
  • presentations
  • research projects

Teaching is organised on a modular basis, each module involves approximately 24 hrs of staff contact as follows:

  • Part-time on campus TESOL module classes are between 5pm and 8pm. You can access the online materials and discussions if you cannot make a class.
  • Full-time on campus classes are between 5pm and 8pm - Thursdays are key study days. 
  • Distance learning - an MA Education TESOL can be achieved by part-time online learning through the use of our Moodle platform. For each module this usually requires about 12 hours a week plus time spent on assessment. The online route is usually taken part-time over 2 to 3 years.

Field trips

There is the option of a one-week, self-funded study visit to the Gambia in June of the study year. This trip can be included as a case study for one of the optional modules.


Assessment methods used on this course

You will improve your practice through the course assessment tasks.

Assessments are supported in a number of ways:

  • online question and answer discussions
  • presentations of work in progress with tutor and peer feedback
  • formative tasks with detailed feedback.

Each coursework based module is assessed separately, in the following ways:

  • individual essays
  • seminar presentations
  • reports
  • portfolios
  • investigative research
  • group work.


The School of Education is a thriving centre for educational research and teacher professional development. Students on master's level programmes therefore join a large research community comprising researchers at all levels of higher education study.

We hold two major research conferences each year - the School of Education Research Conference and the EdD Colloquium. All students are invited to attend our annual Research Seminar Series (which attracts both internal and external speakers). We also organise a number of conferences, lectures, seminars and debates, some of which have an international reach.

The School’s six research groups exist to encourage engagement in research, publication, conference presentations, seminars and workshops:

  • Inclusion and Wellbeing
  • Policy, Partnership and Leadership
  • STEAM pedagogy and learning
  • Humanistic Perspectives on Education
  • Early Years
  • Applied Linguistics

View all staff profiles for School of Education

Female student working in library

After you graduate

Career prospects

Recent students graduating with an MA Education (TESOL) have moved from teaching into teacher professional development, management of language schools and language businesses, materials and test writing.

Others have gone from school to university teaching and from general English to specific English teaching for academic purposes, business and law.

Student profiles

Programme Changes: On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website.

For more information, please visit our Changes to programmes page.