As English becomes a global language, TESOL teachers must know not just how to teach a language but how to prepare their students to participate more fully in a dynamic and changing world. Students need teachers who can adapt to their learning needs. Teachers must increasingly engage in language policy discussions and look beyond the classroom to the communities in which they work.

A leader in TESOL for more than 50 years, SIT will give you the training to meet your students’ learning needs and promote positive change within communities. You’ll learn to think deeply about teaching and learning, using you examination of the major shifts in the field (systems thinking, chaos theory, ecological approach, multilingualism, and plurilingualism) to analyze and interrogate your beliefs. With this thorough background in theory and practice, you’ll be prepared to intelligently and compassionately serve learners.

A personalized approach

Join a learning laboratory of fellow teachers. Your first three-week residency builds your cohort of experienced teachers into a tight-knit, collaborative group learning from their own and each other’s experiences in the classroom. A faculty advisor will mentor you through every step of the rest of your first year. Your mentor will observe you in your own classroom and give you personalized feedback. You’ll further customize your learning experience by choosing one of four areas of specialization: teacher training, plurilinguistic pedagogy, teaching refugees and displaced persons, or teaching young learners.

Ideas you’ll explore

In this highly practical program, you’ll learn theory and how to use it. You’ll use tested tools and tap into your own creativity to develop new tools that work in your classroom. Some of the key topics you’ll cover include:

  • Personal, psychological, socio-cultural, biological, and linguistic factors that influence language development
  • The intercultural and identity dimensions of language and cultural learning
  • Multilingualism, linguistic and cultural diversity, and plurilinguistic pedagogies
  • The regularities, meanings, and underlying systems of language, focusing on the phonology, grammar, and lexicon of English
  • The theory underlying the teaching of the “four skills” — reading, writing, listening, and speaking — and how to design course lessons that develop and integrate learning in these skills
  • A variety of approaches to language teaching, such as the Silent Way and Community Language Learning
  • How to integrate past and present learning and teaching experiences in a variety of contexts
  • How to design and assess curriculum

How it works

This innovative low-residency MA in TESOL program for practicing teachers utilizes SIT’s successful model of experiential, reflective learning and practice. During your first three-week residency, you’ll learn with and from other teaching professionals in your cohort as you are trained in the latest TESOL pedagogies and practices. Throughout the year, as you complete coursework online, you’ll apply your new learning in your own classroom. During a three-day supervised practicum, your faculty advisor will visit your classroom to provide individualized, practical mentorship.

During the second year of the program, move beyond the classroom to understand how your teaching can impact the community. You’ll choose one of four emerging challenges in the field — teacher training, plurilinguistic pedagogy, teaching refugees and displaced persons, or teaching young learners — as your area of specialization. Building on your work during the previous year, you’ll develop skills in leadership and advocacy.