English Language Learners (PreK-6 or 5-12)

English language learners (ELL) are the fastest growing segment of the U.S. student population and qualified teachers are in high demand. Our Master of Arts in Teaching (M.A.T.) program is an accelerated coed program that leads to licensure in teaching English language learners (ESL; PreK-6 or 5-12) and a master’s degree. It includes:

  • a rigorous but supportive program, based on the most current research and taught by experienced scholars and practitioners
  • an explicit commitment to equity and social justice
  • personalized advising
  • year-long practicum experiences in area schools, which offer opportunities to work closely with experienced local ELL educators and to explore teaching diverse learners in a range of settings

The M.A.T. is a 36-credit program that full-time students complete in 13 months, from June through June. It is designed for current teachers and those interested in pursuing a new career path, as most classes meet after K-12 school hours.

A two-year “flexible-time” program option is also available.

 

Summer Session: 5 credits

2 courses

The first courses of the program will introduce you to the sociocultural context of schooling, current research in the field of ELL teaching and learning, and theories of second language acquisition.

X.ELL-403 Research in Teaching English Language Learners
Credits: 3
Description: This course introduces teacher candidates to the sociocultural context of schooling and examines current research in the field of ELL teaching and learning. The course will support teacher candidates in developing an orientation toward teaching as inquiry, as well as the ability to read and conduct classroom research. Critical qualitative methods (e.g., ethnography, case study, action research) will be considered and teacher research in the ELL classroom will be emphasized. Teacher candidates will develop and complete a qualitative inquiry project that investigates an aspect of language teaching or learning of interest to them.

 

X.ELL-418 Second Language Acquisition and Classroom Practice
Credits: 2
Description: This course will a) introduce students to theories of second language acquisition (cognitive, social, and linguistic influences) and how these inform teaching practices, and b) introduce teaching methods and approaches to teaching ELLs so students can begin to make informed context-sensitive decisions about language teaching methods, techniques, lesson planning, materials, classroom management, etc.

 

Fall Semester: 14 credits

4 courses

This semester you will study linguistics, literacy development, and a range of evidence-based methods for teaching English, including how to support literacy development in the content areas. You will also observe and assist in local schools 10-12 hours per week.

 

X.ELL-421 Linguistics for Teachers
Credits: 2
Description: This course provides teacher candidates with an in-depth analysis of the structural and functional components of language: syntax, phonetics, phonology, morphology, semantics, register, and genre. Teacher candidates will apply concepts to language teaching and learning. The course will also include an in-depth look at functional linguistics and critical genre theory, focusing on how language functions in academic speech and writing.

 

X.ELL-426 Methods in Teaching English to K-12 Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL Methods)
Credits: 4
Description: This course focuses on applying theories, principles, and evidence-based methods of second language acquisition to the development of materials, lessons, and curricula for teaching disciplinary English to K-12 speakers of other languages. Teacher candidates will cultivate skills in the design and delivery of contextualized lesson plans, develop expertise in the selection and evaluation of materials such as textbooks, computer-assisted materials, and realia, and demonstrate their understanding of critical issues in teaching ELLs. Teacher candidates must simultaneously be participating in pre-practicum observations.

 

X.EDUC-461 The Process of Teaching and Learning: Developing Literacy in Early Childhood And Elementary Schools
Credits: 4
Description: Through a balanced and integrated approach, students will learn to develop literacy in early childhood/elementary schools. Class members will learn about emergent literacy, diagnosing language needs, integrating phonics skills in a literature-based program, the teaching of process writing, children's fiction and nonfiction literature, and a variety formative and summative ways to assess learning. Course required for spring semester practicum students. Course evaluation is based on written and oral work done individually and in groups. Requires a pre-practicum.

 

X.EDUC-463 Teaching English Language Learners
Credits: 4
Description: This course addresses core competencies outlined in the Massachusetts Department of Education's English Language Learner certificate requirement. Readings in language acquisition theory, language learning and teaching, effective lesson design and assessment, Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol, and knowledge of intercultural learners are covered. Students will have experience developing and adapting lessons and curriculum to address the needs of students in their pre-practicum settings.

 

January: 3 credits

2 courses

During the winter term, you will learn about English language development standards and issues of assessment, testing, and evaluation in language and literacy education.

X.ELL-416 Language Assessment and Classroom Practice
Offered: January Intersession | Credits: 2
Description: Brief introduction to theory and practice in assessing students' academic English proficiency. Students will learn about purposes of and types of language assessments (e.g., large-scale standardized tests like WIDA ACCESS, alternative assessments like portfolios, formative assessments) and practice designing oral language assessment tasks and using rubrics  to evaluate student writing.

 

X.ELL-451 English Language Development Standards and Assessment Framework
Credits: 1
Description: This course introduces teacher candidates to the WIDA English language development standards and assessment framework, with a particular focus on understanding the large-scale standardized assessment of English language learners (e.g., WIDA ACCESS 2.0). This course will prepare teacher candidates to understand test design, prepare to participate in administrator training, and interpret score reports in ways that support their ability to use assessment to inform instruction and communicate with students and families about students’ English language development needs and progress.

 

Spring Semester: 14 credits

2 courses

January through mid-June you will participate in full-time student teaching in Massachusetts public schools and capitalize on that experience with a weekly seminar.

X.ELL-422 Practicum Seminar in Teaching and Learning - Elementary ELL Education
Credits: 4
Description: This licensure-level weekly seminar provides teacher candidates with opportunities to examine curriculum development models, develop curricular units utilizing state and national content area standards, review research based models of classroom management, and engage in dialogue with practicing teachers regarding various aspects of teaching and learning. Additional topics covered will include: implementing translanguaging pedagogy, developing productive partnerships between ELL and content area teachers, legal obligations of teachers, and home-school communication.

-OR-

X.ELL-433 Practicum Seminar in Teaching and Learning - Secondary English Language Learner Education
Credits: 4
Description: This licensure-level weekly seminar provides teacher candidates with opportunities to examine curriculum development models, develop curricular units utilizing state and national content area standards, review research based models of classroom management, and engage in dialogue with practicing teachers regarding various aspects of teaching and learning. Additional topics covered will include: implementing translanguaging pedagogy, developing productive partnerships between ELL and content area teachers, legal obligations of teachers, and home-school communication.

 

X.ELL-423 Student Teaching ELLs in Elementary Schools
Credits: 10
Description: Teacher candidates (TCs) participate in full-time supervised student teaching of grades PK-6 ELLs from January to June. TCs will hone classroom management skills, implement extended curricular units designed to support students’ development of disciplinary literacies, deliver lessons to support disciplinary English development in all content areas, and develop a wide range of assessment skills. Evaluation of performance is determined by on-site visits and written assignments. Successful completion of the course is verified based on satisfactory submission of the CAP requirements for licensure preparation.

-OR-

X.ELL-431 Student Teaching English Language Learners in Secondary Schools
Credits: 10
Description: Teacher candidates (TCs) participate in full-time supervised student teaching of grades 5-12 ELLs from January to June. TCs will hone classroom management skills, implement extended curricular units designed to support students’ development of disciplinary literacies, deliver lessons to support disciplinary English development in all content areas, and develop a wide range of assessment skills. Evaluation of performance is determined by on-site visits and written assignments. Successful completion of the course is verified based on satisfactory submission of the CAP requirements for licensure preparation.