English Language and Communication

MA, Postgraduate Diploma Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)

Year of entry

Study in the historic city of Canterbury, just 60 miles from London and with easy access to the continent.

Our MA TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) will help you obtain professional promotion to positions in TESOL where MA qualifications are necessary or desirable.

You will:

  • develop your teaching expertise and an understanding of many approaches to teaching English as a foreign, second or other language
  • become familiar with a wide range of literature about the field of teaching English
  • develop an ability to present an argument in an academic context
  • learn how to carry out research related to many aspects of TESOL

The course offers:

  • a taught first stage, the Postgraduate Diploma TESOL
  • a second dissertation stage with an individual tutor
  • a chance to exchange views about TESOL with international colleagues on ‘experience’ and ‘non- experience’ routes
  • a substantial core of modules and a variety of elective modules
  • if you have appropriate qualifications, the chance to obtain TEFL Q status on the Teaching Practice module
  • an excellent combination of theory and practice

The MA/Postgraduate Diploma in TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) is a professional development qualification designed for practising teachers of English as a foreign or second language from all parts of the world – the ‘experience’ route.

It is also designed for graduates who wish to begin a career in English language teaching – the ‘non- experience’ route.

It allows both graduates and teachers to develop and further their professional competence alongside an understanding of the theoretical implications of the practice of ELT.

The MA/Postgraduate Diploma has two stages:

  • Postgraduate Diploma
  • MA dissertation (15,000-18,000 words)

Both stages can be completed in 12 months. Part- time students complete the Postgraduate Diploma in two years (taking 60 credits each year) and have 12 months to complete the MA dissertation.


Compulsory core modules (20 credits)

  • ELT Methodology and Classroom Investigation
  • Language Systems and Appropriate Methodology
  • Second Language Learning
  • Course Design and Assessment (10 credits)
  • Research in TESOL
  • Teaching Practice or Practical Project ('experience' route)
  • Fundamentals in English Language Teaching ('non- experience') route

Elective modules (10 credits)

Elective modules depend on student demand:

  • Young Learners
  • Content and Language Integrated Learning
  • Cultural Issues in Language Learning and Teaching
  • Literature in the English Language Classroom
  • Drama in ELT l Language in Use
  • Teacher Education
  • Using Technology in the ELT Classroom
  • Materials and Task Design

The skills and attributes you acquire will help you obtain professional promotion to positions in TESOL where MA qualifications are necessary or desirable.

For example:

  • in primary, secondary or tertiary school management abroad
  • as Directors of Studies or Academic Directors in local and national English language schools
  • in Departments of Ministries of Education, such as curriculum and syllabus design, materials writing and assessment
  • teacher training
  • TESOL publishing
  • examinations writing
  • academic teaching and research posts in TESOL


2018/19 tuition fees for this course

Fee per stageUK/EUOverseas
Full MA  £5,200 £12,000
PG Diploma  £2,315  N/A
PG, continuation from PG Diploma  £2,885  N/A

Tuition fees for all courses which last more than one academic year are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

There will be an annual inflationary increase in tuition fees for this course where the course lasts more than one academic year. The increase will reflect cost inflation in the University. Any inflationary increase will be no more than 3.5% for each year of your study. The increase will be calculated on the previous year’s tuition fees and not the tuition fees at the start of the course. 

Government loans of up to £10,280 are available for some postgraduate Master’s courses for students starting their course from 1 August 2018. Loans are subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria.

The rules around course eligibility mean that in some cases it may depend on how you are studying (full-time or part-time) as to whether you can apply for a postgraduate loan. To check whether your course is eligible, you can email the Student Fees Team or call 01227 923 948

Read more about postgraduate masters student loans.

Students may self-fund their course or a sponsor may fund or part-fund. Bursaries, scholarships and fee discounts may also be available.

Further information

Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet.

Costs applicable to all students

Text books Own purchase text books
Travel to other sites Where travel to other sites is required, this will be payable by the student
Library Fees and Fines Where students fail to return loaned items within the required time they will be responsible for the cost of any library fees and fines applicable
Printing & Photocopying The cost of printing and photocopying undertaken by students to support their individual learning are payable by the student
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by the student

General principle policy

The University’s general principles policy for additional course fees are set out here

CategoryIncluded in the tuition feeAdditional cost to student
Field trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) No, if the trip contributes to the course as an optional module. Yes if the trip is optional.
Travel and accommodation costs for placements  No

Travel and accommodation costs for professional placements within the Education and Health & Wellbeing Faculties.

Travel and accommodation costs for other work placements. 
Text books No Own purchase text books.
DBS / Health checks No Yes
Professional Body registration No Yes
Travel to other sites (e.g. travel to swimming pool for lessons) No Yes
Clothing / Kit Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons. Yes, where the clothing is kept by the student and not essential for health and safety reasons.
Learning materials Essential learning materials (excluding text books) in connection with the course. Additional materials beyond the standard provision essential for the course or where the costs are determined by the student’s area of interest and the outputs are retained by the student.
Library fees and fines No Yes
Printing and photocopying No Yes
Social events No, unless the event forms an essential part of the course. Yes, unless the event forms an essential part of the course.
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student.

Teaching is delivered through lectures, seminars, group work, practical work related to teaching, and guided independent study. Input sessions are generally organised to make the most of the variety of backgrounds and teaching contexts that students bring to the programme, and all are encouraged to share experience and insights.

The programme is in two stages: Stage 1 consists of six taught modules (ELT Methodology & Classroom Investigation, Language Systems & Appropriate Pedagogy, Second Language Learning and Reseach Methods in ELT – each with thirty hours of contact time – and Course Design,  Assessment and an Elective module – each with fifteen hours) plus either Fundamentals of ELT - a 40-hour taught module for students on the non-experience route - or Teaching Practice or Practical Project, in which students work independently, with regular meetings and the guidance from an individual supervisor. Successful completion of Stage 1 results in a Postgraduate Diploma.

In Stage 2, students are assigned an individual supervisor and produce a 15-18,000-word dissertation on a subject of particular personal interest. Successful completion results in award of an MA.Teaching staff, including a Professor and Senior and Principal Lecturers in the School of Language Studies and Applied Linguistics, are all widely experienced professionals in the world of ELT, with backgrounds in teaching, teacher training, course design, assessment and ELT management, and a variety of published work and specialist areas of research and interest.

Essays, reports, portfolios, practical teaching and an oral presentation, as well as a 15,000­-18,000 word dissertation (for the MA).


Applications for this course can be completed online.

For further information, please read our guidance on how to apply online.

Or contact the School of Language Studies and Applied Linguistics on:

Tel: +44 (0)1227 782585

Email: language.studies@canterbury.ac.uk

Comments from previous students:

"I got good support anytime I asked it.  Coming from Mexico, it was really important for me to adapt and the teachers’ support made this a lot easier for me. 

"Studying on this MA has also opened doors which have enabled bme to work in the UK and experience different styles of teaching English."


"I enjoyed the course very much. It was well-designed and well-organised. Every teacher was very caring. Although it was not easy for me to write essays, I managed to finish the course their support and guidance. I was happy having lovely class mates: they were also teachers of English from all over the world. Studying with them was a good stimulus."


"The teaching staff are very enthusiastic about their submect and were very supportive especially when it came to writing the MA. The assignment deadlines were also realistic for part-time students. I found being on the course increased my sense of identity as a professional and allowed me to communicate on many theoretical issues with other practitioners."


"I have met such wonderful professors and classmates in this course. I got a lot of inspiration, and this course will surely enrich my future study and career as a teacher. Thank you very much for your great support throughout the year!"


Fact file

Institutional code

  • C10


  • 12 months

    2 years part-time

Entry requirements

  • For the 'experience' route you will need to have a relevant Bachelor's degree at 2:2 or above; approximately one year's classroom teaching experience. For the 'non- experience' route you will need to have a relevant Bachelor's degree at 2:2 or above and proven language learning ability.
  • For both routes, if your mother tongue is not English you will need to have IELTS 6.5 or equivalent.



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Last edited: 30/04/2018 16:37:00