Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

School of Education

MA TESOL Studies

MA TESOL Studies provides candidates who have little or no previous experience of teaching with the opportunity to study for a Masters degree in English Language Teaching, offering an excellent step towards a career in TESOL.

You will explore the essential elements in language teaching, studying the processes of learning and teaching language, in addition to the study of language itself. You will also develop the knowledge and skills required to evaluate TESOL theoretical frameworks, materials and procedures in addition to those required for the practical management of the classroom.

The School of Education at Leeds is ranked as one of the very best in the UK for the quality of both its research and teaching.

In semester one, you will study three core modules exploring the English language, how second languages are learned and, in general terms, how they may be taught. In semester two, you will study the practicalities of teaching English, undertake micro-teaching and have a chance to specialise through choosing from a set of modules including assessment, teaching Academic English, designing materials.

You will use the knowledge and skills you gain over the course of the year to carry out a small-scale piece of research related to your own interests within TESOL.

If you choose to study part-time, you will study over a longer period and take fewer modules in each year.

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Dissertation in TESOL Studies: Portfolio 60 credits
  • Analysing Language Learning 30 credits
  • Analysing Language Teaching 15 credits
  • Language Teaching Methodology 30 credits
  • Analysing Language 15 credits

Optional modules

  • Theorizing Childhood and Youth 30 credits
  • Research with Children and Young People 30 credits
  • On-screen, off-screen: children's creativity and cultures 30 credits
  • Children, Young People and Literacies 30 credits
  • Children and young people: citizenship, participation and social justice 30 credits
  • Learning and Teaching Vocabulary 15 credits
  • Grammar, Learning and Teaching 15 credits
  • Teaching Academic English 15 credits
  • Corpus Linguistics in the Classroom 15 credits
  • Tasks and Materials for TESOL 15 credits
  • Learning and Language in Primary Classrooms 30 credits
  • Assessing Language Learning 15 credits
  • Teaching Languages to Young Learners 30 credits

Learning and teaching

We use a range of teaching and learning methods including seminars, tutorials, group work and lectures. Specialist modules also use online learning to give you hands-on experience of using online teaching materials. However, independent study is an important aspect of this programme, either alone or in a group, as it allows you to develop key research, analysis and communication skills and develop your own ideas.


Most of our modules are assessed through written assignments, which you will choose from a range of topics. To help you prepare, you will be able to submit a draft to your tutor for comment beforehand. You will also complete group projects and project reports.

Entry requirements

A bachelor degree with 2:1 (hons), preferably in a subject related to languages, language learning or education. However, we do consider applicants from a range of other backgrounds.

This programme is designed for students who do not have the two years of experience needed for our other TESOL programmes.

Beyond a first degree of an appropriate standard and appropriate English language skills, we have no specific requirements. However we do prefer applicants who can demonstrate an interest in the field of language teaching, through for example having been involved in tutoring.

We will also expect you to have basic ICT skills such as word processing, email and using the internet, and be able to use computers routinely in your academic work. You should also be able to demonstrate your ability to use ICT independently, with appropriate technical support.

We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For more information contact the School of Education admissions team.

English language requirements

IELTS 7.0 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

Improve your English

If English is not your first language, you may be able to take a pre-sessional course before you begin your studies. This can help if you:

  • don't meet the English language requirements for your course or
  • want to improve your understanding of academic language and practices in your area of study.

Our pre-sessional courses are designed with a progression route to the degree programme and are tailored to the subject area. For information and entry requirements, read Language for Education (6 weeks) and Language for Social Science and Arts: Education (10 weeks).

How to apply

We generally advise you to apply before the end of July.

This link takes you to information on applying for taught programmes and to the University's online application system.
If you're unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Documents and information you need

  • A copy of your degree certificate or equivalent and transcripts (English translations and original language if applicable).
  • Two written references.
  • Evidence of your English language qualifications if English is not your first language.
  • A personal statement of 750-1000 words, explaining how you would be suited to the programme.

Admissions policy

School of Education Taught Postgraduate Admissions Policy


UK/EU: £6,750 (total)

International: £15,750 (total)

Read more about paying fees and charges.

For fees information for international taught postgraduate students, read Masters fees.

Part-time fees are normally calculated based on the number of credits you study in a year compared to the equivalent full-time course. For example, if you study half the course credits in a year, you will pay half the full-time course fees for that year.

Additional cost information

There may be additional costs related to your course or programme of study, or related to being a student at the University of Leeds. Read more about additional costs

Scholarships and financial support

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There may be help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government.  Find out more at Masters funding overview.

Career opportunities

The majority of our students are international students, and they tend to return to their home countries to embark on careers in English Language teaching in primary, secondary or tertiary education in the private or public sectors.

Many such graduates are now teaching in, for example, university language centres, private language schools, or state secondary schools in the Middle East, China, Japan, Korea or Cyprus.

Each year we do have some UK students, some of whom remain in the UK teaching ESOL, while others go abroad.

The methodological skills and theoretical knowledge they develop have allowed some to move into teaching other languages, such as Chinese.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. Thats one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

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