Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Track

TESOL track

Students choosing the graduate track in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) must satisfy the following course work as part of their core requirements: ENG 688, 691, 695, 793.  In addition to the core and degree requirements listed above, these students must also complete the following courses:

For detailed descriptions of the TESOL program and the Missouri State TESOL certification requirements, see "Opportunities in TESOL" later under the Department of English information.  Students may also consult with the Coordinator of the TESOL program, Dr. Christina Biava.

TESOL certification option

Graduate Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)

Christina Biava, Certificate Advisor
Sicefull Hall, Room 207; Phone 417-836-5867
CMBiava@MissouriState.edu

Program description

The Graduate Certificate in TESOL provides a 15-hour graduate-level experience for people who already hold a bachelor’s degree (or higher) in some area and who are interested in teaching English to adults, either abroad or in the U.S.  The program includes courses in theoretical linguistics as well as in pedagogical concerns.  (The certificate is not to be confused with the Missouri teaching certificate in TESOL, K-12.  For information about that program, see the TESOL Certification Option below or contact the certificate advisor).

Admission criteria

To be considered for the program, a student must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university, with at least a 3.00 undergraduate grade point average and no grade lower than a “B” in any graduate courses (if any have been taken).   The student must apply and be admitted to the Graduate College; admission to the certificate program does not constitute admission to any other Missouri State University graduate program.  Students who are already graduate students at MSU may apply to the certificate program as well (except for students in the M.A. in English with an emphasis in TESOL program). 

Required courses (15 hours total) 

Course CodeCourse TitleCredit Hours
ENG 691* Linguistic Theory 3 hrs
ENG 688 Sociolinguistics for Language Teaching 3 hrs
ENG 695 Principles of Second Language Acquisition 3 hrs

* If a student has already taken an introduction to linguistics at the undergraduate level, he/she may, with the approval of the certificate advisor, substitute a different course for ENG 691 from the list of elective courses below, or another graduate course in linguistics with the consent of the certificate advisor.

2 courses from:

Course CodeCourse TitleCredit Hours
ENG 605 Methods in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) 3 hrs
ENG 690 Grammatical Analysis 3 hrs
ENG 696 Materials and Assessment in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) 3 hrs

Transferred course work

Students may transfer one course taken from a different regionally-accredited institution into the certificate program, with the approval of the certificate advisor and following MSU’s policy on transfer credit.  (See the Graduate College section on Transfer Credit for these policies).

Double counting courses

Students may not count the same course more than once within the certificate program itself.  Students may count toward the graduate certificate in TESOL any of the courses listed above that have been taken as part of the M.A. in English or the M.A. in Writing.  Double counting in other programs may be allowed with the consent of the certificate advisor and the student’s major advisor.

Completion requirements

Courses must be completed with a 3.00 GPA for successful completion of certificate.

Opportunities in TESOL

Specialists in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) teach English (speaking, listening, reading, writing) to people who do not speak English as their first language.  They may teach children of immigrants or refugees or non-permanent residents, or children who speak different languages (such as Spanish, Vietnamese, Navaho) at home or in the community.  They may also teach adults in universities, community colleges, or various literacy programs.  Some may teach overseas in schools, businesses, or other settings such as the Peace Corps.  A TESOL specialist has an interest in foreign languages, in language structure, in teaching, and in working with people from other cultures.

Graduate students in English may emphasize TESOL course work in their MA program without necessarily seeking certification; some may seek Missouri state K-12 TESOL certification as described below.

TESOL certification option

A student can be certified in TESOL by meeting the following requirements:

  1. Completing a bachelor's degree;
  2. Holding a Missouri teaching certificate in any other area (e.g. elementary education, secondary English);
  3. Completing the following professional education requirements (may be taken as part of bachelor's degree): RDG 474 or RDG 710; and SPE 310, SPE 340 or SPE 710;  
  4. Completing the TESOL certification requirements outlined below.  It is recommended, though not required, that the student have course work in a foreign language or have a foreign cultural experience.

Certification requirements (21 hours)

Course CodeCourse TitleCredit Hours
ENG 691 Linguistic Theory 3 hrs
ENG 688  Sociolinguistics for Language Teaching 3 hrs
ENG 695  Principles of Second Language Acquisition 3 hrs
ENG 696 Materials and Assessment in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) 3 hrs
ENG 605 Methods in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) 3 hrs
ENG 697  Practicum in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) 3 hrs
  Electives in English, education, or other cognate areas 3 hrs

NOTE: Students must earn a "C" or higher in all courses counting toward state certification.