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    Jul 14, 2024  
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog 
    
2014-2015 Graduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

English as a Second Language (ESL), MA


Admission and degree requirements


Admission requirements and procedures

Applicants for the MA with a major in linguistics or ESL complete two parts. The applicant first files an application with the Toulouse Graduate School (available on the UNT Graduate School web site). The applicant then submits the following to the Department of Linguistics and Technical Communication:

  • a 300–500 word personal statement describing the applicant’s interests, career plans and purpose in working toward an MA; and
  • a current vita or resume.

To be eligible for admission to the MA with a major in linguistics or ESL, applicants must have at least a 3.0 GPA on the last 60 hours of undergraduate semester credit hours prior to receiving a bachelor’s degree or a 2.8 GPA on all undergraduate work. The applicant must also submit scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Applicants accepted into the MA with a major in linguistics or ESL have presented verbal scores ranging from the 50th to the 99th percentile and analytical writing scores ranging from 4.0 to 6.0. Applicants whose native language is not English must also submit a score on the TOEFL examination. Scores on the computer-based TOEFL examination have ranged from 231 to 255.

Applicants for the MA with a major in professional and technical communication must have completed up to 9 hours of undergraduate course work in technical writing. The advisor will determine the prerequisite course work based on the applicant’s educational background.

Financial support

Beginning full-time students who meet all qualifications may apply for financial assistance in the form of the academic assistantship; those who have already completed 18 graduate hours in an area offered by the Department of Linguistics and Technical Communication may apply for a teaching fellowship. Applications for both may be requested from the department by telephone at 940-565-4458, or the department web site at www.LingTechComm.unt.edu.

Foreign language requirement

All candidates pursuing a master’s degree in linguistics or ESL must have a reading knowledge of at least one foreign language. As evidence of such foreign language, a student may present the results of a standardized examination or have completed the sophomore year of a foreign language, or the equivalent, provided that the grade point average on all language courses is 2.75 or higher. A student who has permission to write a thesis or to enroll in LING 5920 -LING 5930  and LING 5950  or in TECM 5950  will not be allowed to register for these courses until the foreign language requirement has been met.

Degree plan requirement

During the second term/semester of graduate work toward the master’s degree, the student is required to file a degree plan with the department office. Students should obtain an appointment as soon as possible after the registration period during their second term/semester’s work.

Comprehensive examination

Candidates for the MA with majors in linguistics and ESL who choose Option III must pass the master’s comprehensive examination. Candidates for the MA with a major in linguistics who choose Option I or Option II do not take the master’s comprehensive examination. This examination is administered by the Department of Linguistics and Technical Communication and is given every February and October. Students must register for this examination at the appropriate time in the department office. Students should consult with the graduate advisor early in their programs to learn of the specific nature of the comprehensive examination. The comprehensive examination may be taken twice. If the candidate fails the examination on both occasions, then permission for any retake of the examination must be granted by the graduate committee.

Candidates for the MA program in linguistics who choose Option I or II must pass an oral defense of the written project prospectus as well as a defense of the completed project (thesis or two scholarly papers).

Application checklist

Applicants should send the following materials directly to the Toulouse Graduate School:

  1. A completed graduate application form with the intended major indicated in the appropriate blank.
  2. Official Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores sent from the Educational Testing Service. Candidates applying for all MA programs in Linguistics and Technical Communication must take the GRE verbal and analytical writing sections.
  3. Official scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) examination for students whose native language is not English.
  4. Official transcripts for all previous undergraduate and graduate academic work.

Applicants for the MA with majors in linguistics and ESL should send the following materials directly to the Department of Linguistics and Technical Communication:

  1. a 300–500 word personal statement describing the applicant’s interests, career plans and purpose in working toward an MA; and
  2. a current vita or resume.

Candidates also applying for an academic assistantship or teaching fellowship should send the following directly to the Department of Linguistics and Technical Communication:

  1. A teaching fellowship/academic assistantship application.
  2. Three letters of recommendation that assess the candidate’s potential both as scholar and as teacher.
  3. Writing samples comprising two polished pieces (e.g., a research paper, manual, proposal, or other piece of technical communication).

Degree requirements


Option 1, Thesis


Requires 36 hours of course work.

Option 2, Scholarly papers


Requires 36 hours of course work.

Option 4, Professional development project


Note: option 4 not currently accepting students.

Students approved for Option 4 must take their second year of course work at UAEM-Toluca, Mexico. Students must complete LING 5040 with a B or higher as a prerequisite to entering the joint program.

Course requirements, second year


  • Seminario de aplicación innovadora del conocimiento (Seminar on the Innovative Application of Knowledge [of Linguistics])
  • Teoría y diseño curricular (Curriculum Theory and Design)
  • Enseñanza de lenguas extrajeras (Teaching Foreign Languages)
  • Evaluación (Evaluation)
  • 6 horas de temas selectos (6 hours of electives)

Electives


Electives are to be chosen from the following UAEM courses:

  • Semántica y pragmatíca (Semantics and Pragmatics)
  • Métodos de la enseñanza del inglés como segunda lengua (Methods of Teaching ESL)
  • Métodos de campo en lingüística (Methods of Field Work in Linguistics)
  • Sociolingüística (Sociolinguistics)
  • Professional Development Project

During the second year, students will begin work on their professional development project in práctica. The project will consist of two elements: a paper reporting the project and an oral defense. In the paper, students will identify specific teaching challenges related to ESL/EFL teaching, e.g., problems with teaching skill areas, success of classroom activities, or issues of classroom management. The paper must include the following:

  • A full description of the problem to be addressed.
  • A review of current research on the topic.
  • Possible solutions to the teaching challenge in light of contemporary methodological paradigms.
  • Evidence of the joint MA student implementing solutions in the classroom during the practicum for example, detailed lesson plans and description of classroom activities and assessments.
  • Analysis of the success of the revised approach to teaching, including comparison of results of student assessments under different methods of teaching.

After students complete the paper, their committee will conduct an oral defense of the professional development project. At least three members of the committee will be faculty from UNT; it will also have at least one committee member on faculty at UAEM.

Thesis and scholarly papers requirement


A student is permitted to write a thesis or scholarly papers only with the permission of the director of graduate studies and a major professor. Before registering for thesis hours (LING 5950 ) or problems in lieu of thesis (LING 5920  and LING 5930 ), a student must have met the foreign language requirement and passed the MA comprehensive exam.