TESOL MA Initial

Master of Arts in TESOL Initial

We offer a 37-point Master of Arts degree in TESOL leading toward PK-12 Initial New York State Teacher Certification. Through comprehensive and innovative coursework, hands-on experiences in New York City public schools, and research projects, you’ll explore the teaching and learning of English to PK-12 speakers of other languages.

Please note: We currently have no Professional Certification program for students who already have Initial Certification or are teaching full-time. Students wishing to teach in a public school in a state other than New York are advised to consult the certification requirements for that state.

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Admissions Information

Master of Arts

  • Points/Credits: 37
  • Entry Terms: Fall Only


View Public Disclosure Notification

  • NY State Initial: English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Pre-K-12

Application Deadlines

  • Spring: N/A
  • Summer/Fall (Priority): January 15
  • Summer/Fall (Final): April 15

* Deadline for the 2023 application extended to May 1.

Supplemental Application Requirements/Comments

Requirements from the TC Catalog

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The TESOL PK-12 Initial Certification track offers a 37-point Master of Arts degree in TESOL leading toward Initial New York State Teacher Certification. Students wishing to teach in a public school in a state other than New York are advised to consult the certification requirements for that state.

See section for TESOL Transitional B for PeaceCorps Fellows for specific requirements for this degree.

Candidates applying for initial certification in New York will be required to fulfill NYSED’s Content Core requirements for initial certification (see https://www.tc.columbia.edu/office-of-teacher-education/students/certification-requirements/initial-certification/ ). They will also be required to take and pass all required New York State exams for initial certification. For more information, please visit our Office of Teacher Education (OTE) website: 


All courses must be passed with a grade of B- or above to count toward Initial New York State Certification.

General Courses (12 points):  

  • A&HL 4000: Educational linguistics (3)

  • A&HL 4085: Pedagogical English grammar (3)

  • A&HL 4087: Introduction to second language acquisition (3)

  • A&HL 4088: Second language assessment (3)

Track Specific Courses in TESOL, PK-12 (13 points):

  • A&HL 4076  TESOL methodologies for PK-6 (3)

  • A&HL 4171  TESOL methodologies for 7-12 (3)

  • A&HL 4185  Pedagogical approaches in the content areas for teachers of PK-12  ESL (3)

  • A&HL 4776  Supervised student teaching in TESOL: PK-6 (2)

  • A&HL 4777  Supervised student teaching in TESOL: 7-12 (2)

Elective Courses (3 points)

  • One elective course in Applied Linguistics and TESOL (3 points):

    • A&HL 4077 TESOL classroom practices (3)

    • A&HL 4090 Teaching writing to ESL students (3)

    • A&HL 5011 Tech-based language teaching and materials design (3)

    • A&HL 6097 Task-based language teaching learning (3)

    • A&HL 4001 Sociolinguistics (3)

    • A&HL 4104 Discourse analysis (3)

    • A&HL 4105 Conversation analysis (3)

    • A&HL 4106 Text and textuality (3)

    • A&HL 5105 Classroom discourse (3)

    • A&HL 5106 Language socialization (3)

    • A&HL 5008 Interlanguage analysis (3)

    • A&HL 5087 Second language acquisition in the classroom (3)

    • A&HL 6097 Task-based language learning (3)

    • A&HL 5199 Topics in language assessment (3)

    • A&HL 5519 Instructed SLA and assessment (3)

    • A&HL 6040 Classroom-based language assessment (3)

Breadth Courses (9 points)

Foundations/breadth courses are intended to broaden students’ knowledge of the history of education, philosophies, and educational issues and practices beyond their particular area of concentration. 

Foundations/breadth credits must be used to meet the New York State requirements within the following categories: 

*Bilingual/bicultural education or urban education (3)

*Elementary and secondary education (3)

*Teaching students with learning disabilities (3)

Students must consult with their advisor when choosing their breadth courses. 


Bilingual/bicultural education or foundations of education and urban education (3) :

  • A&HB 4020 Bilingualism and disabilities

  • A&HB 4021 Foundations of bilingual/bicultural education

  • A&HB 4024 Linguistics foundations of bilingual/bicultural education

  • A&HB 4075 Cross-cultural communication and classroom ecology

  • A&HB 4121 Bilingual/bicultural curriculum design

  • A&HH 4076 History of urban education

  • C&T 4078 Curriculum and teaching in urban areas

  • C&T 4501 Teaching and learning in the multicultural classroom

  • EDPS 4022 Sociology of urban education

  • ITSF 4060 Latinos in urban schools

  • Various topics courses in Bilingual/Bicultural Education

  • Elementary and secondary education (3)

    Elementary and secondary education (3)

    • A&HF 4090 Philosophies of education

    • A&HF 4091 Call to teach

    • A&HW 4036 The teaching of social studies

    • A&HW 5030 Diversity and the social studies curriculum

    • C&T 4124 Curriculum development in elementary education

    • C&T 4133 Learning and teaching in the intermediate reading and writing classroom

    • C&T 4141 Literature for older children

    • C&T 4151 Teaching of writing

    • C&T 5037 Literacy, culture, and the teaching of reading

    • HUDK 4022  Developmental psychology: Childhood

    • HUDK 4023  Developmental psychology: Adolescence

    • MSTC 4040 Science in childhood education

    • MSTC 4044 Biology curriculum and methods laboratory

    • MSTM 5010 Mathematics in elementary school

    Teaching students with learning disabilities (3)

    • C&T 4000 Disability, exclusion, and schooling

    • C&T 4001 Differentiating instruction in inclusive classrooms

    • C&T 4046 Curriculum and instruction in secondary inclusive education

    • C&T 4047 Curriculum development in secondary inclusive education

    • C&T 4301 Formal assessment of exceptional students

    • C&T 5080 Access to full participation in schools

    • HBSE 4001 Teaching students with disabilities in inclusive classrooms

    Exit Project:

    In addition to course requirements, students must complete a Master’s project written on a research topic arising from course-related interests and subject to approval by their assigned advisor. This project can be a review of literature on a scholarly topic or a practice motivated review of literature. It is normally completed at the beginning of the last semester of study. For more information, click here.

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