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Thinking about taking your career to the next level? Why a Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages might be for you
By Dr. Tammy Gregersen
I am thrilled that you've come upon our blog about the Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (MA TESOL) at American University of Sharjah (AUS). Let me begin by expressing my delight in your interest. I am the ever-so-enthusiastic coordinator of the program, and also an academic within it, so it is my pleasure to share my insights about the program with you.
Before I get into the nitty gritty of our internationally renowned program, I would like to take a moment to step back and ponder the sense of purpose and meaning that being an English teacher inspires. Frank Smith once said, "One language sets you in a corridor for life. Two languages opens every door along the way." Particularly with the lingua franca role that English plays in today's globalizing world, studying a master's degree in TESOL will provide opportunities to perfect your own English language skills, as well as opening prospects for teaching it to others. If we return to the notion of finding meaning and purpose in our careers, the perfect person to invoke for extoling the virtues of teaching is Henry Adams and his suggestion that "A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops." Hence, perfecting another language opens doors and teaching it makes us influential for generations.
On a more practical level, a master's in TESOL provides you with sharpened language skills to communicate both orally and in written form. Graduates are also well-equipped to teach English anywhere in the world at all levels, whether that be in primary, secondary or post-secondary posts. Because we focus on honing our students' writing skills, graduates may also opt for careers as editors or writers for English-medium publications. Our master's in TESOL may also be a stepping stone to a PhD in a variety of related fields such as linguistics, applied linguistics, education and many more, which paves the way for academic positions in universities around the world. In the end, our program enhances candidates' English communication performance, so any career that needs that skill-set becomes an option!
Here is what sets us apart from other institutions across the UAE and the region. Our innovative program in preparing English language educators:
- incorporates international standards for preparing teachers for a global society and instilling values of respect for diverse cultures
- aligned its curriculum, this past year, with the most avant garde institutions of higher education around the world, incorporating the most recent research in applied linguistics and second language acquisition
- hired new internationally acclaimed, award-winning faculty from the United States and United Kingdom, whose publications total more than 35 books and 60 peer reviewed articles and chapters
- is bringing visiting professors from around the world to offer seminars and classes in specific areas of expertise
- maintains rigorous standards to assure the highest quality output from both professors and students
- preserves close, professional relationships between faculty and students to guarantee that students are provided with the individualized attention that candidates need to excel in their studies and their research so they may meet their potential as future educators
If the MA TESOL inspires you to become a better teacher, or take a new, exciting career direction, then we are excited to speak to you, and help you take the next step towards enrolling in this program. You can find out more by visiting www.aus.edu/cas/matesol, or by contacting me at [email protected]. I would love to chat to you about the program, and the impact it could have on your future.
Dr. Tammy Gregersen, Professor in the AUS Department of English, is Coordinator of the MA TESOL Program .