Master of Arts in English: Concentration in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL)

M.A. TESOL - What is it?

Admissions Deadlines


  • November 15 - early decision deadline
  • December 1- regular decision deadline


  • February 1- early decision deadline
  • April 1- regular decision deadline
  • July 31- late decision deadline

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MA TESOL Program receives US State Dept Award

The U.S. State Department has recognized the MA TESOL Program with an English Language Fellow Top Producing Institution Award, an award presented to five institutions that have prepared the largest number of TESOL professionals to become English Language Fellows - highly qualified and experienced U. S. educators in the field of teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL).

Fellows are cultural ambassadors who promote English language learning and mutual understanding through cultural exchange on 10-month fellowships around the world. 

This year marks the English Language Fellow program's 50th anniversary and at the Anniversary Celebration on Tuesday, November 5, 2019, in Washington, D.C. Dr. Maricel Santos representing SF State’s MA TESOL Program received the award.

Open House - Friday April 23 10:00-4:00pm

We are hosting a Virtual Open House event. Come for all or any part of this day and see if the MA TESOL Program is right for you!
  • Visit a graduate seminar
  • Join faculty and students for a Q & A about the TESOL program
  • Attend an academic talk


TESOL Talks - Friday, April 23, 2:00-3:30pm


Presenters Juliana van Olphen and Karen Wiederholt will provide you with a foundation in Writing Across the Curriculum pedagogy then focus your attention on Writing in the Disciplines and the CSU-wide Graduate Writing Assessment Requirement (GWAR). Come with your thoughts, experiences, and questions on how to best prepare multilingual students for writing intensive classes in their majors. Let’s share and learn from each other!

Please register here to receive your Zoom Link to this virtual event    


English Dept Conference - Spring 2021

Friday, May 7th,

The English Dept Conference brings together graduate students in our TESOL, Composition, Linguistics, Literature, and Technical & Professional Writing concentrations to present their work. Join us virtually to learn, collaborate, celebrate, and explore the ways our disciplines overlap and inform our research and pedagogy!

More information coming soon about presenter bios and capstone presentations and how to register for this virtual event.

Program Overview

The program in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, founded in 1964, is one of the longest running of its kind. This award winning program has a double emphasis:

  1. Theoretical foundations and contemporary research in linguistics, sociolinguistics, second-language acquisition and related fields.
  2. Classroom teaching methodology suitable for adult second-language learners.

Because our alumni go into so many teaching situations, the M.A. TESOL program does not attempt to train for one specific type of locale; instead, we provide general preparation for the teaching of adult learners in a variety of pedagogical settings.

conference students

Degree Requirements (30 units)

Core Curriculum (15 units)

  • ENG 702: Introduction to Graduate Study of Composition, Linguistics, and TESOL
  • ENG 707: Topics in Language Analysis (Variable Topics)
  • ENG 728: Topics in Sociolinguistics (Variable Topics)
  • ENG 733: Student Teaching Seminar
  • ENG 895: Field Study or Applied Research Project

Concentration Curriculum (12 units)

  • ENG 731: Seminar: TESOL Listening and Speaking Skills
  • ENG 732: Seminar: TESOL Reading and Writing Skills
  • ENG 734: TESOL Curriculum and Assessment
  • ENG 826: Second Language Acquisition

Electives (ONE minimum - 3 units)

  • ENG 724: Special Topics in TESOL (e.g. Tech, Teach Abroad, Research)
  • ENG 726: Practicum (if less than 2 yrs teaching experience)
  • ENG 736: Seminar: Teaching ESL in the Community
  • ENG 738: Pragmatics and Oral Skills
  • ENG 832: Seminar in Immigrant Literacies and Community-Based Projects

The Culminating Experience is fulfilled by ENG 895  or ENG 898 Master's Thesis (with consent of advisor).

Course Descriptions

Admissions & Prospective Students


Abeywickrama, Priyanvada

Priyanvada Abeywickrama
Phone: (415) 338-3095
Building: HUM 269