MA in Applied Linguistics for English Language Teaching

Programme Leader: Dr Emma Marsden



The Department of Education, in collaboration with the Centre for English Language Teaching, offers a one-year (12-month) taught full-time MA in Applied Linguistics for English Language Teaching (MAALELT). Applicants' first degree should be in a related subject, such as language, linguistics or education, with a substantial component of English.

MAALELT is for those who are interested in pursuing an MA relating to TESOL and who will have the equivalent of at least one year's full-time English teaching experience by the time the course starts; this experience of teaching can be with any age of learner, and any stages of learning.This teaching experience is normally after you have obtained your first degree. Teacher training internships, casual private tutoring and holiday camps are not normally sufficient.
You must indicate clearly on the main application form that you have this experience, giving all of the following information:

  1. the start date and finish date of your teaching experience
    If you will be teaching until the MA starts, please write 'on going until MA starts'
  2. the type of establishment you have taught in (e.g. primary, secondary, university, private language school, etc.)
  3. whether you were full or part time.
    If part time, tell us how much you taught per week.

Please also provide one reference from somebody who can verify and comment on your teaching experience.

If by the time the MA at York begins, you will not have the equivalent of at least one year's full time experience, please consider applying for the MATESOL instead.


The aim of the programme is to provide a broad-based Masters in English (TESOL) language education informed by theoretical and practical concerns. The programme does not offer a language teaching qualification; it does offer advanced inquiry into the processes of language learning, with specific reference to second language learning. Applications are welcome from both home and international students.

Applicants are strongly advised to ensure that they submit applications no later than 1 September if they wish to begin a course of study beginning in the same year. No guarantee can be offered that applications received after this date will be processed for a September start date.

Overseas applicants are also advised to check how long it is likely to take for their visa to be processed and to allow sufficient time in order that they are able to begin their programme of study on time.


Apply for the MA in Applied Linguistics for English Language Teaching

Programme content

This taught MA programme comprises modules totalling 180 credits. For more details about current modules please download the MA Full-time Modules Handbook 2014-15 (PDF  , 938kb). This information is a guide only and subject to change.

Term 1

  • Language for education (20 credits)
  • Research methods in language learning and teaching (20 credits)

One option module (20 credits).

The options available are likely to include

  • Bilingualism
  • Citizenship education
  • Cross-linguistic influences in second language acquisition
  • Discourse analysis & language teaching
  • Education and social justice
  • Evaluating ESOL classroom practice
  • Intercultural communication in education
  • Learning and Teaching Second Language Reading
  • Motivation in education
  • Teaching and assessing speaking skills
  • Teaching and assessing writing skills
  • Teaching and learning in schools
  • Teaching World English
  • Topics in second language acquisition


Term 2

  • Teaching and learning language (20 credits)
  • Language curriculum design and evaluation (20 credits)


Term 3

Planning and Communicating Research (20 credits.) These classes are spread over Terms 2 and 3

The third term and the summer is devoted to writing a dissertation (60 credits) based on a small-scale research study to be submitted by early September


Students will complete:

  • four assessed coursework essay assignments (each 4,000 to 5,000 words in length)
  • an exam in Research Methods in Language Learning and Teaching
  • an assessed presentation  + dissertation outline + ethics audit
  • a dissertation of 12,000 words based on a small-scale research study