Special Program

MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages


MA in TESOL: The Master's in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (MA in TESOL) prepares you to work in the U.S. and abroad.  You may select coursework that prepares you for several career choices, including the following:  English as a Second Language (ESL) or English as a Foreign Language (EFL) instruction in the U.S. or in a non English-speaking setting abroad; K-12, adult education, or post-secondary settings; and research in Applied Linguistics.  The program emphasizes language acquisition processes, teaching methodology, linguistics, language testing, research, discourse analysis, and sociocultural influences on language learning and use. 


Admission Requirements

  • The MA in TESOL Program requires that applicants (a) have a 2.75 grade point average for the last 90 quarter units attempted, (b) have completed the Cal State LA course TESOL 4000 (Linguistics in Education or ENGL 4101 (English Literature in America) or an equivalent Introduction to Linguistics course. 

  • Non-native speakers of English (regardless of citizenship) who have not completed an undergraduate program in English must obtain a score of 100 on the TOEFL IBT or 7.5 on the IELTS.  If your TOEFL score is below 100 or 7.5,  consider taking some of the courses offered at the English Language Program at Cal State LA. For information in these courses, please go to the English Language Program website.

  • Students can be admitted on a conditional basis.

  • Download here a PDF of the MA in TESOL Program List of Courses Offered. 


MA in TESOL Required Courses 

The MA in TESOL program requires a minimum of 36 units.


  • TESL 4000 - Linguistics in Language Education (3) or
  • EDSP 4010 - Cognitive, Linguistic, and Literacy Processes of Individuals with Special Needs (3) or
  • ENGL 4101 - Introduction to English Linguistics (3) and one year of college level study in a foreign language or equivalent

A. Required Core (24 units)

  • TESL 5600 - Theories of Teaching and Learning Second Languages
  • TESL 5610 - Pedagogical Grammar for Teachers of ESL/EFL, or
  • ENGL 4170 - Modern English Grammar
  • TESL 5620 - Methods for Teaching Second Languages
  • TESL 5640 - Teaching English as a Second Language for Academic Purposes
  • TESL 5670 - Language Testing
  • TESL 5680 - Practicum in English as a Second Language
  • TESL 5700 - Educational Sociolinguistics
  • EDFN 5000 - Research Methods in Education 
​B. Electives (Select 12 units from the following with advisor approval)
  • TESL 5610 - Pedagogical Grammar for Teachers of ESL/EFL
  • TESL 5650 - Using COmputers in the Language Classroom
  • TESL 5660 - English Phonetics for Second Language Teachers
  • TESL 5690 - Language Planning and Language Policy
  • TESL 5710 - Discourse Analysis in the Language Classroom
  • TESL 5720 - ESL/EFL Course, Syllabus, and Materials Design
  • TESL 5730 - Current Issues in Classroom Second Language Acquisition
  • TESL 5750 - ESL/EFL Reading-Writing Connections
  • TESL 5970 - Graduate Research
  • TESL 5980 - Graduate Directed Study
  • EDCI 5540 - Research and Methods for Teaching in Bilingual/ Cross-Cultural Classrooms
  • EDCI 5490 - Developing English Reading/ Language Arts Skills in Bilingual/ Cross-Cultural Individuals
  • EDSP 4010 - Cognitive, Linguistics and Literacy Processes in Individuals with Special Needs
  • EDFN 4520 - Statistics in Education
  • EDIT 4300 - Information Technologies in the Classroom
  • ENGL 4170 - Modern English Grammar
  • ENGL 5040 -  Seminar: Theories of Composition and Rhetoric
  • ENGL 5050 - Seminar: Topics in Composition, Rhetoric, and Language

​C. Culminating Experience (0, 4 units)

  • TESL 5960 - Comprehensive Exam, or
  • TESL 5990A - Thesis Planning, or
  • TESL 5995A - Project Planning
  • TESL 5990B - Thesis Writing, or
  • TESL 5995B - Project Writing