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Postgraduate taught courses – University of Reading

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Postgraduate taught courses

Master's Virtual Open Day - Friday 12th June 2020

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The University of Reading has been known for decades as a centre of excellence in TESOL and Applied Linguistics.

Our MA programmes in TESOL and Applied Linguistics have more than 2,000 graduates in over 40 countries, many of whom have gone on to become world-renowned teachers and scholars.

Distinguished graduates from Reading's MAs include Professor Penny Ur OBE (Haifa University), Professor Roger Nunn (Petroleum Institute Abu Dhabi), Professor Scott Thornbury (The New School New York), and Professor Barry O'Sullivan (British Council).

These highly competitive programmes are suitable for high-calibre candidates who:

  • have already been working as language teachers or are just starting or thinking of starting a career in language teaching, and wish to develop professionally and academically;
  • are interested in language in use in society, business or other professional fields, and want to develop their career in language-related industries (media, publishing, translating, language technology, international marketing, public relations);
  • may also be interested in pursuing PhD studies in the future.

Read our MA Leaflet here.

DELAL PGT Leaflet 2020 image















Postgraduate Diversity

Studying an MA with us is a truly global experience. Each year we welcome MA students from all over the world. The map below shows the countries of origin of our MA students in the last 3 years. This rich linguistic and cultural diversity helps MA students at Reading understand Applied Linguistics and Language Education from the perspectives of multilingualism and multiculturalism.

DELAL PGT Diversity Map 800

Features of the Programme:

Reputation and Expertise

You will be taught by experts in Applied Linguistics and Language Education, who are known for cutting edge research in their specialties. Their work is regularly published in important international journals, and they are regularly invited to speak at major international conferences. At the same time, nearly all of them have a background in English Language Teaching and understand how to apply research to addressing practical teaching and learning issues in the classroom.

Small Class Sizes and Individual Attention

Students on Reading's MA programmes receive considerable individual attention. All students have regular meetings with personal tutors and dissertation supervisors. They also become a part of a thriving intellectual community with regular research talks and social events with academic staff and PhD students.

Variety and Flexibility

We offer programmes to suit every type of student:

In our MA TESOL programme we offer two tracks. Students can pursue a research-focused degree with a dissertation, or a pre-service teaching-experience degree with a portfolio.

Core modules on MA TESOL include:

  • Second Language Learning Principles
  • Foundations of Language Studies
  • Language Curriculum Design or Teaching the Language Skills
  • Research Methods and Design

Core modules on MA Applied Linguistics include:

  • Second Language Learning Principles
  • Foundations of Language Studies
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Research Methods and Design

Both MA programmes include a wide choice of option
modules including:

  • Language Testing,
  • Discourse Analysis,
  • Intercultural Communication,
  • New Technologies for Teaching and Learning,
  • Teaching Young Learners,
  • Corpus Linguistics,
  • Child Language Development,
  • Language and Migration,
  • English in the World,
  • Teaching and Learning of Vocabulary,
  • Issues in Bilingualism

We also offer classes in Academic Writing specifically tailored to the needs of our MA students.


The University of Reading has one of the best collections of books and journals in TESOL and Applied Linguistics in the United Kingdom, including an excellent electronic collection that allows students to access most books and articles online and off campus. Resources also include a self-access learning centre, access to language corpus facilities and several computer laboratories.

Career prospects

Graduates from our postgraduate programmes enter a range of careers worldwide, including education across all sectors (primary, secondary and higher education, public and private), Testing and Assessment institutions (e.g. The British Council), government or industry specifically publishing companies, media, public relations, marketing and advertising.

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