TESL - Teaching English as a Second Language

Volume 1: 2018.2019

Effective 1 June 2018 through 31 May 2019

Please see the Graduate Catalog Archives for PDF versions of past catalogs.

Course Descriptions

TESL 5030 Language History, Planning and Policy (3)

This course looks at natural language change and then applies those theories to language diversity in the United States. Important laws, policies, and language planning are covered, including English Only policies, the Ebonics controversy, and bilingual education. Students will write their own language policies for a school and write about the effects of linguistic diversity in today’s classroom.

TESL 5040 Practicum in ESOL (3)

This practicum provides supervised field experience for students enrolled in this program. Reflective thought, observation, discussion, and actual teaching will be used to expand participants' teaching skills. Classroom participation includes observation, interaction, record keeping, and analysis of specific strengths and needs of English language learners. Strategies and activities are designed to meet the instructional needs of individual students. Participants will also focus on interpreting and recommending curriculum materials and methods to encourage and help English language learners become proficient in their new language. Prerequisite: Candidacy.

TESL 5139 English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) Methods (3)

Methods of Teaching Languages - This course develops understanding and appreciation for the nature of languages and language teaching and learning. Participants study the most recent developments in teaching techniques and materials, and become involved in on-site activities using them.

TESL 5200 Independent Study (3)

MA students with special interests or needs not met by existing curricula may request that a faculty member supervise an independent study. Together the student and faculty member decide the content of the study and the criteria for evaluation. In no case can an independent study be set up when an existing course already treats the subject. May be repeated for credit if content differs. Prerequisite: Permission of the program director. 

TESL 5220 Curriculum Development in Second Language Classrooms (3)

Participants will apply a curriculum-planning process to the second language classroom. The planning will be based on local standards and legal requirements, informal assessment of children's language, analysis and adaptation of published materials, and the creation of materials to meet identified needs.

TESL 5230 Second Language Acquisition (3)

Participants explore theories and models of second language acquisition. They learn about the emotional, social, and intellectual implications of the process of learning a second language. Students will analyze and compare first and second language acquisition and apply strategies related to second language learning in a cross-cultural setting.

TESL 5311 Principles and Practices of Language Testing (3)

This seminar introduces and analyzes different formats and types of language tests as a reflection of varied linguistic contexts, language teaching and language acquisition goals. Assessment techniques, practices and procedures are discussed in close relation to test validity and effectiveness. The class also covers the design, writing and administration of assessments. Prerequisite: Theories in SLA OR teaching experience OR consent of instructor.

TESL 5350 Language and Culture (3)

Culture greatly affects communication and the kind of language used in various situations. This course focuses on both the different styles of communication found across different cultures and the strategies that speakers use when communicating within their own culture. Special attention is paid to the role of Pragmatics and the use of “speech acts” in communication. Students will develop classroom materials that will help learners acquire the pragmatics skills they need to be successful communicators today.

TESL 5710 Grammar for ESL/EFL Teachers (3)

This course introduces modern English grammar, as well as modalities of including it in the day-to-day language instruction. It is designed to provide the adult ESL/EFL teacher with a knowledge base of various English structures, with regard to syntax (i.e., form), semantics (i.e., meaning), and pragmatics (i.e., use). Special emphasis is given to the development of fun, communicative and interactive lesson plans and activities, which target specific grammar points while meeting various test standards (e.g., MOSPE, TESOL and TOEFL). Theory and research is concentrated in the areas of SLA, Methodology, and Assessment. Prerequisite: Candidacy or permission.

TESL 5720 Teaching English Pronunciation (3)

Teaching English pronunciation to non-native speakers of English is often one of the most intimidating tasks facing an ESL teacher. This course takes students through the consonant and vowel systems of English, with focus on describing proper articulation and developing pedagogical materials. Special attention is paid to "suprasegmental features" in English, which are the stress, rhythm, and intonation patterns that can more affect intelligibility. Students will design pronunciation materials and conduct a textbook analysis. Prerequisite: Candidacy or permission.

TESL 5730 Materials Development for Language Classrooms (3)

This course introduces digital literacy and its application in language teaching. It assists candidates to create hands-on teaching materials for both face-to-face and online courses in language classrooms. The course focuses on creating mini-lessons using handouts, descriptive packets, cartoons, animations, movies, video games, youtube, vimeo, mobile apps, social networking sites, and other web-enhanced materials. The main emphasis is on using new technologies to create engaging teaching and learning activities. Candidates will develop a digital portfolio, which will be useful for their job interviews and conference presentations. The course should benefit all TESL candidates, Communication Arts students, and foreign language education candidates.

TESL 5750 Special Institute in TESL (3)

Webster offers various institutes to provide a wide range of workshop experiences and contemporary topics within the teaching English as a second language program. Detailed current information appears in the specific semester course offerings. May be repeated for credit if content differs.

TESL 6250 Thesis (3)

The student completes a thesis project under faculty supervision. The thesis option is recommended for those considering graduate study at a doctoral level. All theses must follow university guidelines and be deposited at the Webster University library. All teaching English as a second language theses must follow both university guidelines and the additional specific guidelines for teaching English as a second language. The student pursuing the thesis option initially registers for a minimum of 3 credit hours, and subsequently maintains a minimum enrollment of 3 hours until the thesis is completed. Most students need more than one semester to finish the thesis. A maximum of 12 credit hours may be applied toward the graduate degree, with appropriate approvals. Credit for the thesis and thesis project is awarded in a non-letter grade format (Credit/No Credit). Co-requisite: Concurrent registration in TESL 6900. Prerequisite: Permission from the director of the TESL program is required.

TESL 6900 University Thesis Requirement (0)

Required of all MA students completing a thesis project. All theses must follow university and departmental guidelines and be deposited in the Webster University library. Recognizes successful completion of all the thesis requirements. Co-requisite: Concurrent registration in TESL 6250. Prerequisite: Permission from the director of the TESL program.