Multnomah University


As an English teacher, you can open the door to a world of opportunity for refugees, immigrants, international students and other non-native speakers. You can open hearts to Christ as well. 

If God is leading you in that direction, consider our master’s program in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). Take classes that deepen your understanding of the Bible and edify your teaching skills. Gain invaluable experience as an educator in our on-campus ESOL program. And be prepared to teach in universities and colleges, mission organizations or language schools across the globe.

Job outlook

“Given the broad geographic spread of English, and the variety of world Englishes being spoken globally, English is seen less and less as a 'foreign' language, and more as an additional language. In other words, learning English is no longer viewed as something optional, but essential. English has become the most widely taught language in the world.”
– TESOL Position Statement on English as a Global Language (2008)

Whether students are looking to teach overseas or in the US, the demand for highly trained English language teachers is on the rise. As the discipline of English language teaching has expanded its horizons, there is a great demand, not just for teachers, but for highly qualified and trained professionals who can implement best practices in diverse classrooms and help their students achieve success.  

Points of distinction 

  • This degree consists of 37 semester hours of Intercultural Studies and Linguistics.
  • We offer an overseas practicum opportunity. Students have the option to participate in a week-long English Bible Camp in Kobe, Japan.
  • We provide on-campus teaching practice through Multnomah’s Community ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) Program. 
  • Through our coursework students will receive a balance of the necessary theoretical foundations and practical techniques for professional language teaching.
  • Our programs seek to help students integrate faith with educational practice.
  • Our students are prepared to skillfully serve diverse student populations in the U.S. and around the world

Real-world learning opportunities 

  • Students spend time observing a variety of ESL classrooms and reflecting on their observations.
  • Students have the option to participate in a week-long English Bible Camp in Kobe, Japan as an overseas practicum.
  • We provide on-campus teaching practice through Multnomah’s Community ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) Program. Students teach English classes for international adults in our local community.


By the time you graduate, you will:

  • Understand universal components of language. (TE1)
  • Gain exposure to current language acquisition theory. (TE2)
  • Understand theoretical foundations and practical approaches for teaching each skill area. (TE3)
  • Skillfully employ a wide variety of teaching techniques. (TE4)
  • Design curriculum for language courses. (TE5)
  • Understand the sociopolitical, economic, cultural and educational contexts in which English is taught around the world. (TE6)

Student story

Bernie Bernardo was equipped to teach English to non-native speakers at a local college and a Portland prep school. Read his story.

Common career paths

With Multnomah's MA in TESOL, you'll be prepared to: 

  • Teach English in the U.S. to refugees and immigrants at colleges or through community-based programs.
  • Teach international students at colleges and universities in the U.S. and abroad.
  • Teach abroad in elementary and secondary educational settings, universities, language schools and multinational corporations.
  • Develop community or church-based language programs in the U.S. or abroad.
  • Pursue a doctoral program in applied linguistics or education.

Course layout

  • LIN 515 General Linguistics,
  • LIN 516 Grammar for TESOL
  • LIN 545 Foundations of TESOL
  • LIN 555 Course and Curriculum Development
  • LIN 552 Teaching Oral &Written Communication
  • LIN 558 Community ESL: On-Campus Practicum
  • LIN 600 TESOL Internship (arranged)
  • LIN 554 Theories of Second Language Acquisition
  • LIN 561 TESOL Workshop
  • LIN 700 Thesis (optional)
  • EDU 504 Introduction to Educational Research
  • EDU 506 Cultural Competency
  • IS 607 Cross-Cultural Communication
  • IS 701 Christian Theology & World Religions

Cost and financial aid

Current pricing can be found on the Graduate Program Financial Aid page. Books and other fees are not included in that price.

Applying to the MA in TESOL program

In order to qualify, you must:

  • Have a B.A. or B.S. from a regionally accredited college or university.
  • Have a cumulative GPA of 2.5.
  • Submit an application with all required forms.
  • Complete or have completed 12-semester hours of Bible and theology coursework*.

*Bible and theology prerequisites can also be completed during the first year of the MA in TESOL program.

Next steps

You can meet the program director, visit classes and mingle with current students when you attend an MA in TESOL Information Session. For more details on the program or to receive an application by mail, contact the Admissions Department at 800.275.4672 or

More TESOL options

  • Foundations in TESOL Certificate
    This three-credit hour (one course) introductory certificate course provides instruction for those wishing to gain initial exposure to TESOL theory and practice. Content includes a broad overview of general principles of language learning and teaching and an introduction to the teaching of each skill area
  • BA with a major in TESOL
    The major consists of 30 semester hours of Intercultural Studies and Linguistics in addition to the Bible and General Education requirements.
  • BA with a minor in TESOL
    The minor consists of 18 hours of TESOL and Intercultural Studies coursework Linguistics in addition to the Bible and General Education requirements.
  • Advanced Certificate
    Any Multnomah student completing the 6 TESOL core courses (18 semester-hours)  earns an Advanced Certificate in TESOL.  This certificate program is available for students who have already completed a bachelor’s degree and are not seeking a full degree from Multnomah.
  • ESOL Endorsement
    For students who already have or are working toward a degree in education, we offer a 14 semester hour licensure track program.  This program can be completed via evening and summer courses.  An ESOL Endorsement gives students the opportunity to pursue state teaching licensure and become eligible to teach ESL in a K-12 teaching environment.

Meet Your Professors

fall 2015 linguistics Courses:


LIN515 (01) Introduction to Linguistics Mrs. Kristi French
LIN545 (01) Foundations of ESOL/TESOL Ms. Kristyn Kidney
LIN555 (01) Course & Curriculum Development Mr. Michael Bess
LIN561 (01) TESOL Workshop Ms. Kristyn Kidney


Financial Aid Office

TESOL Department