Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (online)

MSc, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma


Admission suspended for the academic intake 2015/16.

This course offers a thorough understanding of the principles and practice of Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) at a level appropriate to graduates who already have a sound academic training.

Key information

  • Degree type: MSc, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma
  • Study methods: Part-time
  • Start date: June. Face to face teaching week - Monday 20th - Friday 24th July 2015
  • Course Director: Anne Lawrie

Tracy Hoggan
TESOL Secretary
University of Stirling
Scotland, UK
+44 (0) 1786 467934 www.stir.ac.uk/education

View fees and finance

Course objectives

TESOL provides an advanced training and professional qualification for people presently engaged in any area of the teaching of English as a foreign or second language. It also offers professional development to people new to TESOL who are seeking a career change. On completion, you should possess the knowledge and practical classroom skills to be a confident, critically reflective and enterprising teacher.

What makes us different?

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Entry requirements

Academic requirements

A minimum of a second class Honours degree (2.1 preferred) or equivalent in a relevant subject.  Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply.

Please note: If you are a student from overseas and applying with a Tier 4 student visa, we unfortunately can not accept your application for this course as it falls into the category of being part-time, delivered online or a distance learning course.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

  • IELTS: 6.5 with at least 6.0 in speaking and listening and 6.5 in reading and writing
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): Grade B
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): Grade B
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic): 60 with a minimum of 60 in reading and writing and 56 in speaking and listening
  • IBT TOEFL: 90 with minimum 23 in reading and writing and minimum 20 in speaking and listening

For more information go to English language requirements

If you don’t meet the required score you may be able to register for one of our pre-sessional English courses. To register you must hold a conditional offer for your course and have an IELTS score 0.5 or 1.0 below the required standard. View our range of pre-sessional courses.

Structure and teaching

Structure and content

You will take four modules. Those entering the course with a recent Cambridge DELTA or Trinity College London Licentiate Diploma can apply for accreditation for the pedagogic module:

  • (TESPD1) Pedagogy and Practice - This module will provide the basic knowledge of the processes underlying the teaching of the skills and sub-skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking of English. It will also provide an overview of current theory and practice in the teaching of the elements of English: grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation.
  • (TESPD2) Second Language Learning (SLA): Theory and Research - This module will introduce students to the process of language learning to adults and young learners from the perspective of current theory and research. It will engage students in critically exploring some of the main developments in second language theory and research.
  • (TESPD3) 21st Century Classroom: Technologies, Concepts and Materials - A practical module which will develop the use of a range of advanced and specialised skills in the production and use of multimedia, computer assisted language learning materials. The module will also provide students with an understanding of the potential and limitations of computers and information technology in language teaching and learning. It will enable participants to identify, select and critically evaluate educational software to enhance their teaching of English.
  • (TESPD4) Language and Discourse Analysis - This module will provide an introduction to the techniques of linguistic description and analysis for English language teaching. It will concentrate on the systematic analysis of the grammar of English. It will also develop students’ critical knowledge and understanding of some approaches to analysing discourse in the field of applied linguistics, one of the intellectual fields which informs the teaching of English to speakers of other languages

The Postgraduate Certificate in TESOL is awarded on the successful completion of two coursework modules. The Postgraduate Diploma in TESOL is awarded on successful completion of four coursework modules. The MSc TESOL is awarded upon successful completion of four coursework modules plus a dissertation of 15,000 words.

Delivery and assessment

Delivery of modules is carried out mainly through distance and face to face. Learning and professional development is facilitated by regular guided group work tasks online. Progress is assessed by coursework assignments and, for the MSc, the dissertation.


For Academic Year 2015/16

The MSc TESOL online course is currently in the process of being re-developed and will be updated when more detail is available. The areas/topics that will be covered within the course will be:

  • Pedagogy and Practice
  • Second Language Learning (SLA): Theory and Research
  • 21st Century Classroom: Technologies, Concepts and Materials
  • Language and Discourse Analysis 

Recommended reading

This will be sent to you once you have completed the application process.

Modes of study

Part-time: three years

Study method


Example timetable

The timetable below is a typical example, but your own timetable may be different.

This will be available towards the end of the summer.

Why Stirling?



In REF2014 Stirling was placed 6th in Scotland and 45th in the UK with almost three quarters of research activity rated either world-leading or internationally excellent.


The School of Education was ranked 1st in Scotland in the Research Assessment Exercise.

Careers and employability

Career opportunities

English is regarded as the most widely spoken language in the world and a qualification in TESOL can open up the opportunity of an English Language Teaching career or, in the case of experienced teachers, can provide access to promoted posts and management positions within English Language Teaching. On completion of the MSc in TESOL, overseas graduates will be well prepared to sit all three modules of the University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations TKT.

Recent graduates have taken up posts overseas or in the field of ESOL in the UK. For more experienced teachers, the qualification has provided access to positions with the British Council or in the tertiary sector.


The course provides students with a ‘career change’ opportunity enabling them, on successful completion to confidently seek employment as a TESOL tutor. For experienced practitioners, it enhances their professional knowledge and understanding of the TESOL sector which enables them to adopt greater responsibility and leadership in their own or future work environment.

Industry connections

The course draws on practitioners and best practice from across the TESOL sector, focusing on the development of advanced professional capabilities and knowledge in language learning and teaching.

Online application process

Please choose a start date and study method from the drop-down list below, and click the Apply Now button below to begin the online application process. (Please make sure you have consulted the Postgraduate Study pages on the University website and the Online Application Guidance Notes before continuing).



2016/17 Overseas £1,500 per 20 credit module
2016/17 Home/EU £670 per 20 credit module
2015/16 Overseas £2,250 per 30 credit module
2015/16 Home/EU £1,005 per 30 credit module


You should expect to pay fees for every year you are in attendance and be aware fees are subject to revision and may increase annually. Students on programmes of study of more than one year should take this into account when applying.

Please note there is an additional charge for the conferral of your degree. This will be charged at the rate applicable when you complete your studies. View more information

Scholarships & funding

information on possible sources of funding

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