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Postgraduate Course


Explore TESOL theory, policy and practice. Learn to teach English to people of different nationalities, educational cultures and explore new possibilities within your specialism.

Students in lecture theatre

Whether you are currently a TESOL professional or you wish to pursue this career in the future, studying this course will equip you to teach English around the globe. You will study alongside students from many parts of the world, who bring with them a diverse mix of educational backgrounds and experiences.

York campus

  • Duration – 1 year full time, 2 or 3 years part time
  • Start date – September 2024, September 2025
  • School – School of Education, Language and Psychology

Minimum entry requirements

    2:2 honours degree in a related subject

    Written task If you do not meet these criteria

Tuition fees

    UK 2023-24 £7,000 per year full time

    International 2023-24 £13,000 per year full time

Course overview

On this course, you will gain knowledge and experience that will help you to pursue new career avenues and opportunities. You might have finished your undergraduate studies and want to boost your career. Or you may have non-TESOL related teaching experience and want to broaden your expertise. In only 18 months you will have the skills and experience you need to teach English across the world.

Our approach to teaching TESOL focuses on teaching English in a multilingual world. You will explore and critique theories of English language learning and apply these to your teaching. You will have the opportunity to gain practical experience in lesson planning and delivery.

You can also gain practical TESOL experience through our community programmes:

  • YESOL (York: English to speakers of Other Languages) consists of evening classes for the local community, held by our students. These aim to help our community improve their English language skills.
  • YEAL (York: English as an Additional Language) is a student led voluntary outreach programme. You will be placed in a local school to work with EAL pupils to improve their English language skills.

We offer you the opportunity to take the CELTA course free of charge as part of your degree. CELTA is the Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). It is an internationally-recognised teaching qualification awarded by Cambridge Assessment English. You will gain hands-on teaching experience that will prepare you for a career in teaching English. Acceptance onto this course is subject to successful interview.

This course is part of a suite of TESOL master's courses. Not sure which one to choose? Take a look at our other courses:

TESOL with Japanese MA

TESOL with Korean MA

Course structure

How you will study

You can study this postgraduate course full time or part time. This allows you to fit your studies around other commitments.

If you choose to study full time the course will take 1 year to complete and you will study 5 compulsory modules.

If you choose to study part time the course will take 2 or 3 years to complete and the modules will be split across the years.

You can find out which modules are available in each term in the Course Specifications.


Credits: 30

Compulsory module

Myths about language circulate in popular discourse, government and institutional policy, and clinical and classroom practice. For example:

  • Language is confused with thought
  • Sign languages are poorly understood
  • Bi- and multi-lingualism is assumed to be problematic
  • Individuals and groups are described as incompetent users of their language(s)

These myths are used to justify the marginalisation of individuals and groups, and are particularly damaging for those who are already disadvantaged in some way. This module is designed to raise the awareness of students from a wide range of educational and professional backgrounds.

Credits: 30

Compulsory module

This module will introduce you to key theoretical issues in second language learning, with a focus on theory development based on research evidence. We will explore comparisons with first language acquisition, and consider the importance of:

  • Cross-linguistic influence
  • Input and feedback
  • Individual learner differences
  • Identity and ideology
  • Instruction

The module will also provide you with opportunities to critically evaluate theoretical frameworks and research methods.

Credits: 30

Compulsory module

Gain practical experience in lesson planning and delivery and learn to explore how to adapt materials and methods to diverse contexts.

If you can provide evidence that you have successfully completed a Diploma in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (DELTA) qualification, you will be exempt from this module.

Credits: 30

Compulsory module

On this module you will explore the implications of research findings in applied linguistics. It will build a foundation for your future independent research, pedagogical work or public engagement activity. The module will give you the tools to take an enquiring approach in your future professional practice. We will consider key issues, principles and procedures for quantitative and qualitative research in language and linguistics. You will refine your skills in:

  • Critical reading
  • Searching for literature
  • Compiling a bibliography
  • Designing a research study or pedagogical / public engagement activity
  • Writing a proposal
  • Addressing ethical issues

Credits: 60

Compulsory module

On this module you have the freedom to either conduct an independent research project related to TESOL, or to carry out a related pedagogical engagement activity.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching and learning

You are encouraged to play an active role in your own learning. Your tutors will take the role of facilitators, encouraging you to think outside your own point of reference. You will be encouraged to share your experience and reflections through regular class discussions.

The course uses a range of teaching and learning methods, including:

  • Lectures (with supporting materials posted on the Virtual Learning Environment)
  • Tutor and student-led seminars, workshops and discussion groups
  • Independent study and research
  • Collection and analysis of data

Our teaching draws on both our research and professional experience. This means your learning is informed by the most current thinking in the subject area. You can find out more about our research and backgrounds by visiting our staff pages.


We use a range of assessment methods on the course. These include:

  • Essays
  • Tests
  • Self-reflection
  • Data analysis
  • Videos
  • Peer teaching
  • Critical reviews

You will receive support and feedback on assessments prior to submission. This will allow you to continually improve your academic work.

Entry requirements


Minimum entry requirements

    2:2 honours degree in a related subject

    Written task If you do not meet these criteria

If you do not meet this criteria, either because your undergraduate degree is not in a related discipline or you do not have a 2:2, you are still encouraged to apply. We will ask you to submit a piece of written work that we will consider as part of your application.

You can find an example of the sort of task we would ask you to complete here:

Task for MA Applicants (Doc, 17KB)

If you can provide evidence that you have successfully completed a Diploma in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (DELTA) qualification, you will be exempt from the 30 credit Theory and Practice in Language Teaching module.

International students

If you are an international student you will need to show that your qualifications match our entry requirements.

Information about international qualifications and entry requirements can be found on our international pages.

If English is not your first language you will need to show that you have English Language competence at IELTS level 7.0 overall (with no less than 6.0 in each component) or equivalent.

International entry requirements

Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL)

If you do not have traditional qualifications, you might be able to provide evidence of professional experience in the subject as an alternative way to meet the entry requirements. This is called Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL). Appropriate references and records of employment would need to be presented to support your case for admission. 

Terms and conditions

Our terms and conditions, policies and procedures contain important information about studying at York St John University. You can read them on our Admissions page.

Fees and funding

UK 2023 - 2024 entry

The tuition fee for 2023 entry to this postgraduate course is:

  • £7,000 for 1 year of full time study
  • £3,500 per year for 2 years of part time study

These costs apply to all UK, Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man students.

Postgraduate loans are available to help you pay for your master’s course. Find out more about funding your postgraduate studies.

Funding opportunities

International 2023 - 2024 entry

The tuition fee for 2023 entry to this postgraduate course is:

  • £13,000 for 1 year of full time study

These costs apply to all students living outside the UK.

Due to immigration laws, if you are an international student on a student visa, you must study full time. For more information about visa requirements and short-term study visas, please visit the International Visa and Immigration pages.

Find out more about funding your postgraduate studies.

International Fees and Funding

Tuition fees

    UK 2023-24 £7,000 per year full time

    International 2023-24 £13,000 per year full time

Alumni Scholarships

If you are alumni of York St John University we have scholarships available to help you continue your studies.

Scholarships for alumni

Additional costs and financial support

Course-related costs

While studying for your degree, there may be additional costs related to your course. This may include purchasing personal equipment and stationery, books and optional field trips.

Accommodation and living costs

View our accommodation pages for detailed information on accommodation and living costs.

Career outcomes

Where could TESOL take you?

This postgraduate degree could lead you to a career directly related to teaching English to speakers of other languages, or it could take you in a completely different direction, using the many transferrable skills you will develop.

This will give you an advantage for a career in:

  • Teaching English to speakers of other languages
  • Translation
  • Government social research
  • Interpretting
  • International aid

Stand out from the crowd with postgraduate study.

Far fewer people have postgraduate degrees than undergraduate qualifications. This gives you something extra to set yourself apart in a competitive graduate job market. Those with a postgraduate qualification will earn an average of £7,000 a year more than those with only an undergraduate degree. (Department For Education Graduate Labour Market Report 2020)

Our careers service, LaunchPad, provides career support tailored to your ambitions. Through this service you can access:

  • Employer events
  • LinkedIn, CV and cover letter sessions
  • Workshops on application writing and interview skills
  • Work experience and volunteering opportunities
  • Personalised career advice

This support does not end when you graduate. You can access our expert career advice for the rest of your life. We will help you gain the experience and confidence you need to succeed.

Apply for this course

For postgraduate degrees you must apply directly to York St John University using the links below. This will take you to the application form you need to fill out for this specific course. 

To complete the online application form you will need to create login details. 

Please contact 2 referees before submitting your application. An automated request for a reference will be emailed to them as soon as you submit. Your application will not be reviewed until both references are in place.

Fees and key information

Apply now

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