Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

Our Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) is a 40-unit program that can be completed in three semesters. The course work prepares graduates to be leaders in language education and English as a second language (ESL) teaching.

Duration Start Date Accelerated Programs Credits Thesis or Practicum Program Chair
Three semesters, full time August Three semesters (30–32 credits allowing flexibility for more electives or a specialization) 40 Practicum capstone and applied linguistics capstone Lynn Goldstein, EdD

Sample course schedule »


Core Course Work

Our professional curriculum emphasizes the integration of pedagogy and practice, as well as related theories and research. You will gain skills and expertise through the practical application of theory to such activities as designing curricula and materials, developing language tests, conducting research projects, and teaching language classes. The course work is centered on these areas of focus:

1. Linguistics

You will examine the ways in which knowledge about languages—and how languages are structured, used, and learned—is used to develop teaching practices that enhance your students’ language learning.

2. Pedagogy

You will consider your language learners’ goals and explore how various pedagogical practices can enhance their learning. You will use this knowledge as you create language curricula and lessons designed to maximize your effectiveness in the classroom and your students’ learning.

3. Research and Assessment

You will study research and assessment practices relevant to the language teaching field to explore the ways in which research studies and assessment tools are designed and conducted—and the ways in which research and assessments influence your classroom practices. You will also learn how to design research studies and assessment tools so you can more closely examine issues of direct concern and relevance to you and your students.

4. Capstone

You will strengthen your expertise through a double capstone, including an applied linguistics capstone and a practicum capstone, which provides a balance of the multiple foci of this program.

  • The Applied Linguistics Capstone helps students refine their skills as applied linguistics professionals. Students will develop a curriculum project, an empirical research report, or an assessment tool using original data that they have collected and analyzed. This capstone also aims to encourage the students’ reflection on their previous course work as well as exploration and clarification of their future plans for careers as language teaching professionals.
  • The Practicum Capstone combines reflective practice and professional development in preparing students for a career in language education. Students integrate theory, research, and conceptual foundations into a coherent and well-informed approach to planning and executing lessons. They also incorporate these three components when developing and using instructional materials and assessment instruments. Activities and products prepare students for successful entrance into the language teaching profession.


Students can choose to add a specialization to the degree course work. Advanced entry students can complete the master’s degree specialization in three semesters; other students will add a fourth semester. Specializations include the following:

    • Language Program Administration
      Add a 16-credit specialization in Language Program Administration to gain professional skills, such as training and supervising teachers, developing curriculum, evaluating program effectiveness, and marketing programs.
    • Teaching Foreign Languages
      Add a 14-credit specialization in Teaching Foreign Languages (TFL) to provide broader professional expertise and additional career avenues.
    • International Education Management
      Add a 16-credit specialization in International Education Management to gain a variety of knowledge and skills related to international education program management, international student services and affairs, international student advising, and directing study abroad programs.
    • Intercultural Competence
      Add a 16-credit Intercultural Competence (ICC) specialization to gain the essential knowledge, skills, and attitudes to expertly lead and train multicultural teams, to sensitively interact with diverse stakeholders, to create effective ICC assessments and training materials, and to meet the challenges of working and interacting in intercultural settings.

    Advanced (Three Semesters) Degree

    We offer a 30–32-unit, three-semester program to students who have completed previous TESOL and/or linguistics course work. Students in this track can also choose to complete the MATESOL and a specialization within three instead of four semesters. Students work with faculty and their advisors to design their program based upon previous course work.


    Sample Course Schedule*

    Fall Start, Full Time, Three Semesters

    Fall 1



    Principles and Practices of Language Teaching I 4
    Language Analysis 3
    Sociolinguistics 3
    Educational Research Methods 4
    Spring 1



    Principles and Practices of Language Teaching II 4
    Structure of English 4
    Language Assessment 3
    Second Language Acquisition 3
    Electives 2–4
    Fall 2



    Applied Linguistics Capstone 2
    Practicum Capstone 4
    Electives 2–4
    TOTAL 40


    *This is a sample degree schedule. Individual student degree schedules will vary. All curricula are subject to revision and change.