Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

School of Education

MA TESOL for Young Learners

In this Section:

MA TESOL for Young Learners is a one year full-time, or two year-part time, programme for teachers, advisors and teacher educators involved in the teaching of English as a foreign language to children aged between five and twelve years old.

The programme will give you a more in-depth understanding of how children learn languages, and the most appropriate approaches and methods for teaching children English.

MA TESOL for Young Learners explores the necessary knowledge and skills to develop better practice. You will also review current theoretical concepts and apply them to the evaluation and development of classroom activities, teaching materials and curricula.

Please note

If you do not yet have the necessary teaching experience for this specialist MA, but are interested in teaching English to young learners in the future, you might wish to consider the pre-experience MA TESOL Studies, which offers a specialist module in teaching English to young learners as part of the programme.


Year 1

Compulsory modules

Critical Study/Dissertation allows you to design and undertake a small-scale research project related to your own interests in the field of education.

Learning and Teaching in TESOL examines the approaches and principles that TESOL teachers can use to teach the skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking.

Investigating Language for TESOL provides you with the skills to describe language in terms of sounds, words, grammar and discourse, and considers how you can analyse learners' language to understand their language development.

Research Methods for TESOL is a non-assessed module which introduces you to key concepts and processes involved in the systematic investigation of language education topics, and helps prepare you for your critical study work.

Teaching Languages to Young Learners examines how children develop oral and literacy skills in a foreign language, and analyses activities and materials to discover underlying theories of learning and their contribution to the development of discourse skills, vocabulary and grammar.

Optional modules

You will choose one of the optional module from the following list.

  • The Practice of Supporting Language Teacher Learning
  • Technology-enhanced Language Teaching
  • Learning and Teaching Vocabulary
  • Grammar, Learning and Teaching
  • Teaching Academic English
  • Corpus Linguistics in the Classroom
  • Teacher Education for TESOL
  • The TESOL curriculum and TESOL change
  • Assessing Language Learning
  • Materials Development for TESOL

More information


MA TESOL evaluates relevant pedagogical materials, procedures, and curricula for the provision and assessment of TESOL, and deepens your awareness of current developments in TESOL pedagogy and theory around the world.

The programme effectively has three parts: in Semester 1, students study two core modules, while also doing a practice assignment, academic skills training, and taking part in a weekly TESOL forum with all other TESOL students. In Semester 2, students do various optional modules, and also study research methods. From June to August, students will be mainly working on their critical study with the support of a tutor; this is usually a research project on a topic of particular interest.

During term time, students have 8-10 hours of class time, and will be expected to work independently outside class, either alone or in study groups.

Most assignments are written essays. Students usually have a choice of topics, and receive support from their course tutor during the writing process.


The programme is delivered by the TESOL team, who as members of the Centre for Language Education Research (CLER) are all active and respected researchers. Their expertise includes teacher education, ESOL, metaphor, motivation, academic literacy, multilingualism, the teaching of language skills, technology in language learning, exploratory practice, young learners, and curriculum change


Dr Martin Lamb
Senior Lecturer
Tel: 0113 3434620
Email: m.v.lamb@education.leeds.ac.uk

Professor Mike Baynham
Professor of TESOL
Tel: 0113 3434481
Email: M.Baynham@education.leeds.ac.uk

Professor Alice Deignan
Professor of Applied Linguistics
Tel: 0113 3434920
Email: a.h.deignan@education.leeds.ac.uk

Dr Martin Wedell
Senior Lecturer in TESOL - Head of International Education
Tel: 0113 3434531
Email: M.Wedell@education.leeds.ac.uk

Dr James Simpson
Senior Lecturer in Language Education; Academic Group Leader, Langauge Education Academic Group
Tel: 0113 3434687
Email: j.e.b.simpson@education.leeds.ac.uk

Dr Richard Badger
Senior Lecturer in Education
Tel: 0113 3434644
Email: r.g.badger@education.leeds.ac.uk

Dr Simon Green
Lecturer in TESOL
Tel: 0113 34 34537
Email: S.J.M.Green@leeds.ac.uk

Dr Penelope Robinson
Senior Lecturer
Tel: 0113 3434526
Email: p.j.robinson@education.leeds.ac.uk

Dr Judith Hanks
Lecturer in TESOL
Tel: 0113 3430524
Email: J.I.Hanks@education.leeds.ac.uk

Dr Lou Harvey
Lecturer in TESOL
Email: L.T.Harvey@leeds.ac.uk


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