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New English/TESOL Master’s Degree Program

January 17, 2017

Angelo State University has added a new Master of Arts (M.A.) degree program in English with a concentration in teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) that will begin admitting students in the fall 2017 semester.

Offered by the ASU Department of English and Modern Languages through the College of Graduate Studies and Research, the new degree program is designed to prepare students to teach English to speakers of other languages, both in the U.S. and abroad. The curriculum consists of 36 credit hours (12 courses) that include hands-on language teaching practice and a comprehensive exam. 

Students in the program will gain theoretical and practical knowledge about human language learning, language and its socio-cultural settings and uses, the structure of the English language, and support for achievement of learner objectives. Highlights will include solid linguistic preparation, classroom observation and teaching practice. 

According to Dr. Won-Jae Lee, ASU’s executive director (Asian relations) to the provost and vice president for academic affairs, graduate TESOL programs are high on the wish lists of many Asian students hoping to study in the U.S. 

Dr. Won-Jae Lee Dr. Won-Jae Lee “In Asian countries, particularly Vietnam and China, more foreign companies are building branch offices and/or factories,” Lee said. “Those companies are always seeking native employees with bilingual proficiency in English, but not many are available, so there is strong demand for their educational institutions to produce more prospective employees with a good command of English. For our new TESOL master’s program, we recently asked our university and recruiting partners in China, Korea and Vietnam to recruit Asian students.” 

ASU’s new program is tailored for both international and U.S. students who wish to teach English as a second language in the U.S. or overseas. Graduates will be prepared for careers as TESOL language instructors for adults or children at schools, universities and businesses in the U.S. and abroad, TESOL program directors, TESOL textbook writers and editors, and academic advisors for international students. 

Admission to the program is open to anyone with a bachelor’s degree in English education, English language or English literature – or anyone who has completed at least 24 credit hours of college undergraduate work in English with at least 12 credit hours in advanced courses. Due to the course sequence, students must start the program during a fall semester. The application deadline for the fall 2017 semester is July 15, or June 10 for international students. Students accepted into the new program will automatically be considered for a Carr Academic Graduate Scholarship. 

Dr. Laurence Musgrove Dr. Laurence Musgrove Dr. Laurence Musgrove, chair of the Department of English and Modern Languages, said, “Our faculty recently developed a new undergraduate concentration in English language learning and linguistics that has attracted many international students interested in teaching English abroad. With ASU’s new and expanding recruitment efforts in Asia, this undergraduate program laid the foundation for developing the new graduate program in TESOL.” 

Faculty involved in implementing the undergraduate and graduate programs include Dr. Jeffrey Schonberg, professor of English; Dr. Karen Cody, professor of French, Spanish and linguistics; Dr. Carolyn Gascoigne, dean of the College of Arts and Humanities; and Mary Hunter, coordinator of ASU’s English Language Learners’ Institute.