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About the Program

Mission Statement

The TESOL programs at Azusa Pacific University prepare present and future educators, both international and domestic, with the competencies and perspectives needed to teach English in a manner marked by professional excellence, intercultural sensitivity, integrity, and compassion. To this end, the program offers a 21-unit undergraduate TESOL minor, an 18-unit graduate Certificate in TESOL, a 6-unit graduate Certificate in TEFL, and a 36-unit master’s degree in TESOL taught by experienced Christian faculty who are motivated to serve God and their students, and who engage students in practical training grounded in theory and research.

Program Details

The Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) prepares students to become exemplary classroom teachers committed to continued professional development within a variety of contexts. Graduates of the program currently serve in the United States and several foreign countries in public and adult schools, colleges, universities, private institutions, and businesses.

APU's TESOL programs blend compassionate Christian service with strong academic preparation and practical training in language teaching. Project-based coursework engages the student in a variety of practical tasks, allowing students to:

Learning in the Field

APU's field-based master's degree can be completed in 24 months with two summer terms on the APU campus and two winter terms abroad in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Courses are offered in an intensive one-week format with additional reading and writing assignments completed over six months. In lieu of writing a thesis or completing a portfolio, teachers demonstrate their competence through an Action Research course.

In-service teachers complete their degree while teaching abroad and attend a series of intensive, one-week classes in July and January with a cohort of 6-28 classmates. Over the next six months, they complete additional assignments and class projects while teaching abroad. Classes are taught in an intensive format, yet coursework is completed in an extensive format, which allows teachers to apply and adapt what they are learning in their own classrooms overseas. In addition to the two face-to-face courses, one online course is completed each term to earn the degree in two years.

Field-based program candidates must be admitted to APU and have secured a teaching contract abroad. Students enrolled in either the on-campus or online TESOL program may take up to three courses in the field-based program without having secured a teaching contract abroad.

Service Opportunity

The growth of the use of the English language worldwide presents English teachers with unprecedented opportunities for intercultural service.

*David Crystal. English as a Global Language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997.

Career Opportunities

Opportunities for teaching English can be found both within and outside the U.S., in both private and public sectors. In the U.S., ESL teachers work with newcomers at all levels of the education system as well as in community or church-based programs; they also work with international students in higher education settings. However, schools prefer to hire trained professionals. While teachers with minimal training are hired for many classroom-teaching positions, those with graduate degrees hold an advantage and command higher salaries. In addition to teaching posts, they are considered for jobs in teacher training, curriculum and materials development, and program administration.

Why Study TESOL at APU?

Housing Options

While taking summer classes in Azusa, California, teachers will be living in the dorms with other colleagues enrolled in the program. The current location in Asia is the International Hotel in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

Note: This information is current for the 2013-14 academic year; however, all stated academic information is subject to change. Please refer to the current Academic Catalog for more information.