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Master of Arts

Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages

The Master of Arts degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) includes the four courses prescribed by the Arkansas Department of Education for ESL endorsement within a flexible degree program. The MA in TESOL can enhance the credentials of K-12 teachers, prepare students for careers in post-secondary teaching in the United States or overseas, and serve as a foundation for doctoral-level studies.

This program may be completed online.

Students who complete the MA in TESOL should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the theory and practice of teaching English to speakers of a second language.
  2. Generate writing that demonstrates as advanced ability to analyze and synthesize.
  3. Conduct original research.

Unconditional Admission

Students are eligible to apply for unconditional admission to the Master of Arts degree program in TESOL if they meet the admission requirements for the Graduate College.

Conditional Admission

Applicants who fail to meet all of the departmental requirements may be accepted conditionally provided the deficiencies are completed prior to the completion of twelve (12) semester hours of graduate work.

Applicants who fail to meet the grade point requirement specified for unconditional admission may be admitted conditionally to enroll for a maximum of twelve (12) semester hours. If a student was admitted conditionally based on grade point average, the condition will be met if upon completion of twelve (12) semester hours a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 or better is achieved.

Academic Advisors

The director of the program will assign a faculty advisor to each student admitted to the degree program. The advisor will assist the student in the design of a curriculum of study that leads to the fulfillment of degree requirements. Subsequently, the academic advisor, the Department Graduate Committee, and the Graduate College monitor the student's progress through the program. It remains, however, the student's responsibility to understand and to satisfy all degree requirements.

Degree Requirements

  1. The satisfactory completion of the following 30 semester hours of graduate work.

    TESL 5023 or ENGL 5023 Second Language Acquisition*
    TESL 5703 or ENGL 5703 Teaching English as a Second Language*
    TESL 5713 or ENGL 5713 ESL Assessment*
    TESL 5723 or ENGL 5723 Teaching People of Other Cultures*

    TESL or ENGL 5000-6000 level Electives selected from the following (18 semester hours):

    TESL 6003 Linguistics for ESL Teachers
    TESL 6013/ENGL 6013 Modern English Grammar and Usage
    TESL 6023 Language and Society
    TESL 6063 Instructional Strategies in Content Areas
    TESL 6083 Seminar in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages**
    TESL 6123Teaching Writing to English Language Learners
    TESL 6133 Teaching Listening and Speaking to English Language Learners
    TESL 6143 Teaching Reading to English Language Learners
    TESL 6863 TESOL Practicum or ENGL 6863 TESL Practicum***
    ENGL 5083 Seminar in English Language**
    ENGL 6023 Composition for Teachers
    ENGL 6033 Rhetoric
    ENGL 6083 Seminar in Linguistics**
    ENGL 6283 Literature and Society**

    *Note:   These four courses compose the course work required by the Arkansas Department of Education for an              ESL endorsement to an Arkansas Teaching License.

      **Note:  These four courses are offered with different topics and may be repeated for credit if the topic differs.

      ***Note: Students who complete TESL 6863 TESOL Practicum as one of their electives are exempt from the                              M.A. Examination requirement.

  1. The satisfactory completion of an examination based on three MA TESOL courses selected by the student. Licensed teachers who complete TESL 6863 TESOL Practicum are exempt from the examination requirement.
  2. A cumulative grade point average of a 3.00 or better must be achieved in all graduate work attempted at Arkansas Tech University, with a maximum of six (6) hours of "C" grades. A student receiving more than six (6) hours of "C" or grades lower than "C" should refer to the section of the catalog on Academic Probation and Dismissal.
  3. The completion of a minimum of 24 semester hours of graduate work at Arkansas Tech University. Full-time residence is not required.
  4. The completion of all degree requirements within six (6) years of admission to the degree program.

Degree Works

Degree Works is a software tool utilized by Arkansas Tech University designed to detail academic progression. It allows both students and advisors to monitor course progress towards degree completion and clearly indicates which course requirements have been met as well as how courses transfer into a program. Transfer courses must be approved through the use of a substitution/waiver form available via the Registrar for progress to display correctly within Degree Works. 

Degree Works will display course progression based on the current program of study, but a "what-if" scenario can be generated for any program to see how progression looks with the courses currently completed and in progress. Note that if you have applied to and been admitted to a graduate program while still finishing your undergraduate program, Degree Works will show your new program of study in the graduate program and you would have to generate a "what-if" query to see your undergraduate degree progress.

Application for Graduation

In addition to satisfying all degree requirements, a candidate for a degree must file an Application for Graduation online or at the Graduate College.  Students must apply for graduation upon completion of fifteen (15) graduate credit hours.

Special Conditions of Graduate Credit

Graduate Credit Taken Prior to Admission to Arkansas Tech University

A maximum of six (6) semester hours of graduate credit with a grade point average of "B" or better may be transferred from an accredited graduate school if deemed appropriate to the graduate program by the head of the student's major department and the Graduate College Dean. Students must send a written request to the head of their major department to petition an acceptance of the transfer credit prior to requesting admission to candidacy to the graduate program. Graduate credit earned six (6) years prior to the completion date of all degree requirements may not be applied toward the degree without the approval of the appropriate program director and the Graduate College Dean. Credits earned by correspondence courses or for remedial purposes will not apply toward the graduate degree. No undergraduate course may be repeated for graduate credit.

Graduate Credit Taken After Admission to Arkansas Tech University

If after admission to graduate study, a student wishes to take a course at another institution to count toward degree requirements at Arkansas Tech University, the student must, in advance of enrollment, obtain written approval from the program director and the Graduate College Dean.