Courses for M.S.Ed. English as a Second Language

The faculty of the School of Education take pride in the curriculum they teach. Whether just beginning in the field of education as an undergraduate student or pursuing a graduate or doctoral degree, the coursework will prepare students to confidently and effectively make a difference in classrooms, school districts, and communities.

Course NumberCourse TitleCredits
GESL 508

Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners

This course is designed to provide you with the outlook, knowledge, skills and dispositions needed to work effectively in K-12 ESL or mainstream settings. It integrates theory and research with practical classroom applications to address ESL specialists’ needs to work effectively with culturally and linguistically diverse learners. More specifically, this course will address how ESL learners’ gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion, socio-cultural backgrounds and so forth, as well as their power relations, identities, motivations, attitudes, anxieties, aptitudes, learning styles/strategies, beliefs, and their L2 socialization affects or relate to their success in both ELL and content areas. By doing this, it aims to enable ESL specialists to facilitate learning among students from various linguistic and cultural backgrounds. It is also designed to encourage you to acknowledge, respect, appreciate and incorporate diversity in your work as educators. In addition to other class assignments, this class requires frequent reflections on linguistically and culturally diverse ESL learners in specific classrooms and case studies and exploration of current cutting-edge research incorporating theory and learner-centered practice in SLA. Students are expected to engage in extensive reading, research, in-class discussion and self- evaluation as well as individual and/or group projects and on-line asynchronous discussions.

GESL 510

Theories and Practice of Second Language Learning

This course will include nine major components that encompass all aspects of SLA from theory to practice: 1- a comparison of first and second language acquisition processes; 2- second language development models such as First Language, Attention, Experience, and Social Theories as well as CPH/Maturation, Ecological Theory, Chaos Theory, and Inter-language 3- language teaching settings, and learner variables including cognitive styles, motivation, identity, attitudinal orientations, language socialization, learning strategies; 4- integrating academic language, culture and literacy skills in content classes; 5- approaches and methods in language teaching - from Grammar Translation to current trends including Content-Based, Learner-Centered, and Task-Based Approaches; 6- planning and teaching receptive skills (listening, reading), productive skills (speaking and writing), and complementary skills (vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation); 7- ESL materials evaluation, selection, design, and development; 8- CALL and ESL instruction; and 9- readings on current developments in ESL teacher education (to be determined by students and instructor).

GESL 512

ESL Curriculum and Assessment

GESL 512 provides a general overview of curriculum and assessment in ESL education. More specifically, the first half of the course focuses on theoretical and practical issues related to the ESL curriculum, including the origins of language curriculum development, students’ needs analysis, learning situation and setting analysis, planning goals and learning outcomes, ESL course planning and syllabus design, instructional materials selection, adaptation and development, and approaches to language program evaluation. The second half of the course, on the other hand, sheds light on the processes of language testing, including teaching and testing, kinds of language tests, validity, reliability and backwash effect in L2 testing, stages of test development, common test techniques, testing productive, receptive and complementary language skills. It also touches upon currently debated assessment and evaluation issues such as testing overall L2 proficiency, age and L2 testing, standardized tests, and process-oriented assessment: dynamic, authentic and portfolio assessment. In this course, students will also get a working knowledge of the application of fundamental L2 curriculum development and testing principles to particular L2 settings and language skills with actual data sets and exercises in several class sessions.

GESL 515

Sociolinguistics and the ESL Classroom

This course addresses the relationship between language use and the social world. It provides an overview of the main topics of sociolinguistics and an introduction to the most important methods used in sociolinguistic research and analysis. The lectures will be built around a discussion of topics and notions, such as the speech community, dialect, code-switching, language variation, pidgins and Creoles, bilingualism, multilingualism, diglossia, address systems, language and gender, language planning, language maintenance, and language shift. The course also covers an introduction to the basic levels of language (phonetics and phonology, morphology and semantics, syntax, pragmatics) with special emphasis on the relevance of linguistic concepts to education. Students will explore the relationships between language and society as well as between sociolinguistics and education by assigned readings, classroom discussions, written assignments, oral presentation, and final examination.

GESL 518

Integrated Literacy in the Content Areas

Since the purpose of this course is to integrate ESL teaching strategies into content-area instruction, it provides opportunities for participants to tailor content-area instruction and to design appropriate curriculum to meet the needs of ESL students. Participants in this course, thus, will explore theories, experience the research, and integrate literacy in the content areas teaching to help ESL learners. To prepare ESL students to cope with the academic mainstream, ESL teachers must help the learners acquire not only the language skills, but also the critical thinking and study skills required in content-area classes. This course explores strategies and approaches using to help ESL learners so that ESL students can benefit from inclusive classes. They will also develop ability to communicate their understanding of integrating literacy in the content area to students, parents, content area teachers, and administrators. Content area language instruction will cover ESL teaching in several areas including Reading, Writing, Speaking, Listening and Science, Mathematics, Social studies, and Physics.

GESL 520

Advanced Grammar and Applied Linguistics

This course aims to support current and prospective graduate students in expanding their knowledge and skills in three main areas within TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages): 1. Advanced English Grammar, which explores the associated metalanguage of grammar and pedagogical principles for teaching grammar to L2 users as a tool for communication; 2. Key Applied Linguistics concepts and areas, such as the NS/NNS dichotomy, the role of identity in language acquisition and use, critical Applied Linguistics, and alternative approaches to language acquisition; and 3. Qualitative and quantitative inquiries and paradigms in Applied Linguistics.

GESL 521

Teaching English as a Second Official Language Methods

This course provides instruction on TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) methods, focusing on receptive and productive skills: listening, reading, speaking and writing. Additional attention will be given to vocabulary. Class sessions will focus on practice related to these five important skills. Educational philosophy behind the suggested methods will be discussed.

GESL 690

Practicum in ESL

Supervised teaching experience designed for persons who hold an Instructional I or Instructional II teaching certificate and are extending certification to ESL Program Specialist. Prerequisite: approval of faculty advisor.

GILT 511

Technology and Education

Examines the pedagogy of teaching digitally, the use of technology as a teaching strategy for the classroom, and the impact of school-related legislation and leadership roles available in instructional technology.

GILT 512

Instructional Design

"Instructional Design is a ""hands-on"" course. As such, you will work on assignments to address some of the key issues confronting educators with respect to the design and implementation of technology-based lessons in the classroom. This course introduces the fundamental concepts of technology-based instruction by examining the pedagogy of teaching and the use of technology as a teaching tool. The instructional design theories that are introduced are equally applicable to education, training and learning in general. However, this course was designed specifically around the application of these theories and practices in the teaching of children. Blending these theories, participants design instructional materials that take full advantage of their target population's learning strengths, and help their learners master the material and identified learning objectives. The design activities are provided to guide you in the development of an overall unit of instruction and how the particular lesson you will create in this course fit into the grand scheme of the identified unit of instruction. "

GILT 513

Instructional Application of Technology

Participants will prepare technology-based instructional lessons in K-12 subjects (Math, Science, English and Social Studies). They will integrate their understanding of instructional design and delivery with basic learning theories.

GRLA 525

Theories, Models, and Instruction of Writing

This is a graduate course that will guide you – whether you are a future staff developer or K-12 preservice or inservice teacher – in how to support children’s writing and teach writing in your grade level, content area, and/or school. This course is “writing intensive” and will require a substantial amount of homework. The focus of the course is on the genres of nonfiction/information writing, fiction and poetry. Prerequisites include at least two undergraduate or graduate courses in reading or language arts. While the course is open to all graduate school of education candidates, it is a requirement for those candidates pursuing certification as a reading specialist, for it is often the expectation and administrative structure for reading specialists to be one of the school’s leaders and staff developers in the teaching and assessment of writing. Utilizing an intensive writing and workshop format, sessions will model how to make students better writers and thinkers through writing. Because one cannot teach what one does not know, much of the course will involve us engaging in the writing process ourselves. Modeling the link between reading and writing, genre topics will involve study of authentic texts and literature. The course is highly collaborative, as you will conference with the instructor as well as with other students in the class.

GRLA 529

Disciplinary Literacy

This course is designed to provide teachers and reading specialists with background knowledge and application of “best practices” related to secondary reading instruction. The reasons why some students struggle with reading at the secondary level is one of the major emphasis of this course. To understand the current science-based methodologies to increase a student’s reading level; which include the development of instructional strategies related to phonological awareness and phonics, fluency, vocabulary and morphology, comprehension, writing, study skills and assessment.

GSCE 540

Adolescent Literature

Evaluation and selection of books and related materials in the subject fields of science, arts, and the humanities, with special reference ot the interests of high school youths.


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