Program Details

Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Advanced Program for Continuing Professional Education

Offered By: College of Education
Next Start Date:
Program Now Enrolling
Approx. Course Length:
Online: 6 weeks [More Info]
Total Program Credits:
32 Credits
Transfer Credits:
Up to 12 credits or 1/3 of the program


Earn Your Master's to Teach English to Foreign Language Speakers

If you are a current teacher and earn your Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), you will be qualified to teach English to students from other countries and cultures. You can also advance into educational and TESOL leadership positions as 21st century school districts become more culturally diverse. Employment in English language literacy is expected to increase over the next decade.

In this TESOL degree program, you are provided with various opportunities to apply concepts, theories and research, particularly in a TESOL practicum that guides you through observational and practice-based experiences. This practicum requires you to have access to a PK-12 school classroom with ESL students in order to complete your practicum course and program assignments. The regionally accredited online Master of Arts degree in TESOL, offered through Grand Canyon University’s College of Education, is aligned with the Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium and Standards of Recognition of Initial TESOL Programs in PK-12 ESL teacher education.

You must submit a copy of your current teaching license or provide evidence of a minimum of one year of teaching experience to apply for this program. In addition, it is essential to have access to a PK-12 classroom to complete the program assignments. In Arizona, graduates of the program may be eligible for ESL and/or BLE endorsement.

Degree Outcomes

Advanced ESL Studies

The Master of Arts in TESOL degree program helps you learn professional and ethical practices as seen through the lens of a Christian worldview. You learn a variety of subject areas in this TESOL degree program that can help increase your skills and confidence in the field of ESL.

What You Will Learn

Increase your TESOL Confidence and Skills

Course topics include:

  • Educational research
  • Brain-based learning
  • Foundations of instruction for English language learners (ELL)
  • School, community and family culture
  • Linguistics
  • Literacy in bilingual settings
  • ELL and bilingual curriculum and methods of instruction
  • ELL and bilingual assessment
  • Methods of teaching and evaluating ELL's with special needs

Career Outcomes

Career Options with a Master's in TESOL

This master's in TESOL program is geared toward individuals who are already licensed as teachers, as it does not lead to licensure. Upon graduation, you may be qualified to work as a leader in a school district's ESL and TESOL initiatives, which are constantly evolving in today’s ever-increasing school climate of diversity.

Course List

The programs offered at Grand Canyon University may vary by content and course length. You are currently viewing the program version available in Arizona. In order to view the specific course content and credit length available for your state, please contact a counselor at 1-855-GCU-LOPE or click here to request more information.
32 credits
Total Degree Requirements:
32 credits

Program Core Courses

Course Description

This course is designed to prepare students for the graduate learning experience at Grand Canyon University. Students have opportunities to develop and strengthen the skills necessary to succeed as graduate students in the College of Education. Emphasis is placed on utilizing the tools for graduate success.

Course Description

This course provides teachers with an introduction to applied research in education across the major quantitative, qualitative, and action research traditions. Coursework focuses on understanding the research process and its integrated components and evaluating published research reports from the perspective of a critical consumer. Teachers explore scientific reasoning and research design.

Course Description

This course focuses on brain research (from neuroscience to the behavioral and cognitive sciences) that relates to teaching and learning and suggests ways that brain research can be translated into what teachers do in schools and classrooms. Teacher candidates will examine the inner workings of the brain and the effect on student learning, memory, and transfer. Specifically, the course explores the body of knowledge that represents the application of brain research to classroom practice, and how knowledge about the human brain can affect the curricular, instructional, and assessment decisions that teachers make every day. Fingerprint clearance not required.

Course Description

This course provides the historical, sociological, political, and legal foundations of policies and instructional programs for English Language Learners (ELLs) in the United States. Emphasis will be placed on understanding, comparing, and evaluating current language models and prototypes. This course will also introduce students to primary theories of language learning and current methodologies and practices.

Course Description

In this course candidates will explore school, community, and family culture. Emphasis will be placed on the major goals, principles, and concepts of multicultural education, including multiple perspectives in culture and history and understanding cultural and individual differences in teaching and learning. Research is utilized to investigate the social, community, cultural, and familial contexts that influence learning and development. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required.

Course Description

In this course, candidates become familiar with the fundamentals of linguistics. Emphasis will be placed on phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, pragmatics, sociolinguistics, historical linguistics, and first and second language acquisition theories. Candidates will synthesize research-based methods of incorporating linguistic principles into their teaching practice.

Course Description

In this course, candidates will examine approaches to developing literacy in a second and native language P-12 schools. Emphasis will be placed on techniques for developing listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills; developing language and literacy through the content areas; using children's and young adult multicultural literature; and assessing students' literacy development in the second and native language. Strategies to develop biliteracy in dual language programs will also be discussed. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: TSL-550.

Course Description

In this course candidates will review curricula and methods appropriate for the teaching of subject areas in ELL and dual language educational settings. Emphasis is placed on linguistic, cognitive, developmental, and socio-cultural considerations in the design of culturally responsive curricula; exploration of culturally responsive instructional methods and materials for use in language arts and content areas; and critique of current commercially prepared products. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required.

Course Description

In this course candidates will explore the principles of (or for) evaluating and structuring assessments. Candidates will design rubrics and examine assessment for the purposes of identification, placement, and instructional delivery. Emphasis will be placed on learning ways to integrate assessment procedures into any curriculum, and designing assessment tasks that allow for improved learning. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: TSL-558.

Course Description

In this course, candidates will be introduced to the field of bilingual and English language learners in special education. Candidates will be engaged in the study of the nature, psycho-social and emotional needs of bilingual individuals and English language learners with exceptionalities. Emphasis will be placed on research in bilingual and English language learner education in relation to the complexity of the over-representation and under-representation of bilingual students in special education, issues in relation to differentiating cultural and linguistic-related learning variations from special education issues, and instructional implications. Practicum/field experience hours: 10. Fingerprint clearance required.

Course Description

In this course candidates have direct participation and experience with ELLs or bilingual/dual language students at their chosen level of instruction, within a P-12 setting. Candidates will practice teaching and management skills, conduct assessments, and learn to communicate effectively with students, parents, colleagues, administrators, and the larger community. Practicum/field experience hours: 60. Fingerprint clearance required. Prerequisite: TSL-565.

Faculty Bios

Program Locations



Pursue a next-generation education with an online degree from Grand Canyon University. Earn your degree with convenience and flexibility with online courses that let you study anytime, anywhere. GCU offers the most experienced leadership in delivering online degree programs. Full-time faculty members and fully trained adjunct instructors, equipped with strong academic backgrounds and practical experience in their fields, support you every step of the way. Designed with the career-oriented professional in mind, our online classes provide an intimate environment that stimulates engaging and challenging discussions. Choose from programs across our distinct colleges, in high-demand employment areas. Classes begin frequently.


Grand Canyon University’s evening programs cater to the demands of working professionals who prefer an in-person learning environment. Our night classes meet just once per week and offer the interaction and discussion of a typical college classroom. Night classes are designed for a specific number of students, providing a warm and nurturing environment that supports an engaging experience. In an evening cohort, you will progress through your degree program with the same career-minded classmates, providing an opportunity to network and forge relationships that go beyond the classroom. Classes begin frequently at various locations, including our main campus.

* The Department of Education defines how an institution must calculate a program's On-Time Completion rate for federal disclosure purposes. The On-Time Completion rate is based on a program’s published required number of months to complete all degree requirements as provided in the institution’s catalog. Completion statistics are updated every January and are based on the cohort of students who graduated between 7/1 – 6/30 of the preceding year. The On-Time Completion rate is determined by the number of students in the cohort who completed the program within the published program length divided by the number of students in the cohort who graduated.

Online and Evening program disclosures

* Please refer to the Academic Catalog for more information. Program subject to change.