Teaching English As a Second Language Degree: Course Curriculum

Published Sep 17, 2009

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English as Second Language (ESL) teachers are becoming more important as the non-native English speaking population increases. ESL teachers need to have at least a bachelor's degree in English or a related discipline, in addition to a teaching license. More employers are requiring a master's degree program in teaching English as a second language, which equips teachers with the skills to promote and develop English proficiency in non-native speakers. A Ph.D. program in ESL education trains teachers to become researchers or administrators.

Course Curriculum for a Master's Degree in Teaching English as a Second Language

The master's degree in ESL education program instructs students on the newest ESL teaching methods. The course curriculum for a master's program in teaching English as a second language focuses on culture and language, approaches to ESL teaching, sociolinguistics, second language acquisition, ESL teaching practice and literacy development for ESL. Students can specialize in K-12 or adult education. A practicum in an ESL classroom and a master's thesis are usually required to complete the program. Graduates of the master's degree in ESL education program will understand how to combine previous teaching experience with new knowledge to create a learning environment that enables students to become proficient in English.

Course Curriculum for a Ph.D. in Teaching English as a Second Language

A Ph.D. in ESL Education program offers coursework that prepares students for careers in ESL education research, leadership and program administration in various environments, such as academic institutions and government. Students should have previous ESL teaching experience before entering a Ph.D. program. Program topics may include issues in ESL education, ESL program management, course design for ESL instruction, proposal writing for ESL research and second language assessment issues. Students can also tailor the program to fit particular interests, such as reading skills development, ESL teacher education and assessment. A comprehensive exam may be part of the curriculum requirements in addition to a thesis or dissertation.

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