Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (MA TESOL)

Portland State University

24 months
601 USD/credit
280 USD/credit
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The MA TESOL degree qualifies its recipients to teach English at an advanced level to speakers of languages other than English.

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Typically the degree takes two years of (full-time) coursework culminating in a final project, thesis, or comprehensive exam. These courses come from the following areas:

  • Language pedagogy
  • Language in society and in the mind
  • Linguistic theory and analysis
  • How non-native speakers learn a language
  • Effective and practical teaching strategies and techniques
  • Language structure and linguistic analysis

The training and course work provides students with knowledge of:

After being awarded the degree, students will be well equipped to teach English to speakers of other languages, as well as to design, implement, and evaluate TESOL courses and even curricula. The MA TESOL is increasingly the degree of preference for employers both domestically and abroad.

Programme Structure

Courses include:

  • Introduction to Linguistics or equivalent
  • Structure of the English Language or equivalent
  • Second Language Acquisition
  • Understanding the International Experience
  • TESOL Methods I
  • TESOL Methods II and Portfolio
  • Practicum
  • Language Assessment
  • Grammar for TESOL
  • Teaching pronunciation
  • Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL)
  • Curriculum Design and Materials Development
  • Corpus Linguistics in Language Teaching
  • Topics (advisor-approved)
  • Linguistic Pragmatics
  • Linguistic Phonetics
  • Discourse Analysis
  • Morphology
  • Language Typology
  • Historical and Comparative Linguistics
  • Bilingualism
  • World Englishes
  • Pidgins & Creoles
  • Psycholinguistics
  • Language Acquisition
  • Linguistics & Cognitive Science
  • Special Topics (advisor approved)
  • Introduction to Graduate Study (2 credits)
  • Research Design (2 credits)
  • Research Methods (2 credits)
  • Culminating Experience(6 credits)
  • Special Topics (advisor approved)

  • Syntax

  • Phonology

  • Sociolinguistics

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 24 months

Start dates & application deadlines


IELTS or TOEFL needed


48 alternative credits


On Campus

Academic requirements

GPA admission requirements GPA Your GPA, or Grade Point Average, is a number that indicates how well or how high you scored in your courses on average. Usually a GPA scales between 1.0 and 4.0, however different countries and universities can have different grading systems.
3 (required)
GRE admission requirements GRE® The GRE® General Test is a widely administered admissions test that measures the skills needed in today's graduate and business school programs worldwide. It contains three sections - Verbal Reasoning, Quantitative Reasoning, and Analytical Writing. Three scores are reported: a Verbal Reasoning score on a 130 - 170 score scale in one-point increments, a Quantitative Reasoning score on a 130 - 170 score scale in one-point increments, and an Analytical Writing score on a 0 - 6 score scale in half-point increments.
GMAT admission requirements GMAT The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a test intended to assess certain analytical, writing, quantitative, verbal, and reading skills in written English for use in admission to a graduate management program, such as an MBA. GMAT contains 4 sections - Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative and Verbal. The score has a range from 200 - 800.

English requirements

IELTS admission requirements IELTS The International English Language Test System (IELTS) tests your English-language proficiency on a scale of 1 – 9. The score refers to the combined average score of 4 subjects (writing, listening, speaking, and reading).
7 (required)
TOEFL admission requirements TOEFL® IBT The TOEFL iBT® is given online through the internet at desiganated testing site. The test measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The score refers to the total score of 4 subjects (writing, listening, speaking, and reading), each subject has a range of 0 - 30.
100 (required)
PTE Academic admission requirements PTE Academic PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English Academic) is a language test that enables students to demonstrate their writing, listening, speaking, and reading skills when applying to study in English. The score refers to a total score which ranges between 10 and 90.

Other requirements

General requirements

  • Submit your application and $50 USD application fee online.
  • Submit all high school transcripts/grades/records along with your graduation certificate/diploma/exam results or certificate(s).
  • Submit evidence of English language proficiency that meets the university’s minimum requirements if you wish to enter university level coursework upon admission.
  • Fill out the Financial Certification and Immigration Information Form and mail or submit it online to PSU.
  • Submit Financial Documentation for I-20

Tuition Fee

  • International

    601 USD/credit
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 601 USD per credit and a duration of 24 months.
  • National

    280 USD/credit
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 280 USD per credit and a duration of 24 months.


MA TESOL students in the Department of Applied Linguistics are welcome to apply for several sources of aid.

  • James R. Nattinger Graduate Fellowship
  • Teaching Assistant Application
  • IELP Graduate Assistantship position is on hiatus. We are not accepting applications at this time.

All applications are due by February 1st of each year.

Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

Our partners

Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (MA TESOL)
Portland State University