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Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)

TESOL

TESOL at Stirling sits within Education Studies in the Faculty of Social Sciences. Our dedicated team of tutors have experience of teaching English on all continents of the world, and pride themselves on their high-quality research and teaching in the areas of:

  • TESOL
  • Computer Assisted Language Learning
  • Applied Linguistics
  • Education Studies

Programme Director, Anne Lawrie, explains more about the courses on offer and why Stirling is the number-one institution for education in Scotland (The Guardian University Guide 2018).

Anne Lawrie

TESOL Programme Director

Anne Lawrie has been with the University of Stirling for more than 15 years. She returned to Stirling after teaching English language and training teachers in different parts of the world, including Africa, the Middle East, the Far East and Asia. As the Programme Director for TESOL, she now welcomes students from around the world and the UK to Stirling. Her research interests are in the fields of cultural awareness, classroom interaction, materials development and intercultural communication.

What is TESOL?

“TESOL is Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages. English is the second most widely spoken language in the world and there is an ever-increasing demand for people who are willing and able to teach the language.

“Our Masters courses at Stirling provide an advanced training and professional qualification, not only for people presently engaged in teaching English as a foreign or second language, but also for people who are new to TESOL and may be looking for a career change or professional development. Our programmes are suitable for novice and experienced teachers alike, and provide students with the skills, confidence and knowledge to walk into a classroom and teach as soon as they have graduated.”

Stirling is ranked 1st in Scotland for Education. What does this mean for students?

“TESOL at Stirling delivers the most up-to-date, cutting-edge teaching to our students. We draw upon our world-leading research in a number of different areas within education, and our professional knowledge spans across pedagogy, applied linguistics, computer assisted language learning and corpus linguistics. We supervise a diverse range of dissertations which, over the last three years, has resulted in some of our students receiving a national commendation from the British Council.

“As part of our commitment to employability, we invite guest speakers to provide lectures and workshops for our students, and offer ‘My Career in TESOL’ sessions which provide input on writing a curriculum vitae (CV), and interview skills. Former TESOL students are also invited to talk about their career journeys and reinforce the variety of opportunities that are open to our graduates.”

What are TESOL course ‘pathways’?

“We offer ‘pathways’ as a dedicated route of study that incorporates a more focused and specialised approach to your chosen subject. The MSc TESOL provides the most flexible choice of modules and is generally for students with little or no teaching experience. The MSc TESOL (Computer Assisted Language Learning) or the MSc TESOL (Applied Linguistics) options are normally chosen by students who have experience of teaching and want to develop their skills in one of those areas.

“In addition to these pathways, in 2017 Stirling introduced two new courses: the MSc Management and English Language Teaching and the MSc Education Studies and TESOL. Students who follow any of the TESOL programmes are eligible to apply for the local, European and international placements we offer.”

Why does Stirling offer an online learning option for TESOL?

“As a postgraduate student, we recognise that everyone’s circumstances are different. Some students may wish to continue working while studying for their degree in order to fund their education or to continue to support their family.

Our online course provides students with the flexibility to studying from home. Over two and a half years, students gain the same learning and teaching as the face-to-face programme. Online students also have the option to spend time on campus should they wish and attend lectures. In addition, students will still have placement opportunities to enhance their employability.”

Do I need to have English Language Teaching Experience to study the MSc TESOL?

“No, the programme is designed to meet the needs of students who have never taught before or are new to English language teaching. Equally, it is also for those who have many years of experience and who may hold CELTAs or DELTAs.”

As a TESOL graduate, what career opportunities are available?

“Graduates in TESOL can be found teaching in nursery, primary and senior high schools, and lecturing in colleges and universities both home and overseas. Some of our Stirling alumni are now Directors of Study in private language schools in the UK, Europe and Asia, while others have moved into teacher training and examining.”

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