MA English Language Learning Areas of Study

The WGU Master of Arts in English Language Learning (preK–12) program content is based on research on effective instruction as well as national and state standards. It provides the knowledge and skills that enable teachers to teach effectively in diverse classrooms. The M.A. in English Language Learning (preK–12) program content and training processes are consistent with the accountability intent of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 and aligned with TESOL Standards. The degree program is focused on the preparation of highly qualified teachers. As described in the federal legislation, a highly qualified teacher is one who not only possesses full state certification, but also has solid content knowledge of the subject(s) he or she teaches.

English Language Learning

Culture
Culture covers aspects of culture and is intended to assist students in developing cultural competency as individuals and as educational professionals. The student learns about the nature and role of culture and the importance of cultural groups and cultural identity. Additional topics covered include examining the link between culture and language, the role of cultural identity in the classroom, and the impact of immigration and migration.

Language Production, Theory and Acquisition
Language Production, Theory and Acquisition focuses on describing and understanding language and the development of language. It includes the study of acquisition theory, grammar, and applied phonetics.

Theories of Second Language Acquisition and Grammar
Theories of Second Language Learning Acquisition and Grammar covers content material in applied linguistics, including morphology, syntax, semantics, and grammar. Students will explore the role of dialect in the classroom, the connections between language and culture, and the theories of first and second language acquisition.

Planning, Managing, and Implementing Instruction
Planning, Implementing, Managing Instruction focuses on a variety of philosophies and grade levels of English Language Learner (ELL) instruction. It includes the study of ELL listening and speaking, ELL reading and writing, specially designed academic instruction in English (SDAIE), and specific issues for various grade level instruction.

Assessment Theory and Practice
Assessment Theory and Practice focuses on issues central to assessment in the ELL environment, including high-stakes testing, standardized tests, placement and exit assessment, formative and summative assessments, and making adaptations in assessments to meet the needs of ELL students.

Professional Role of the ELL Teacher
The Professional Role of the ELL Teacher focuses on issues of professionalism for the English Language Learning teacher and leader. This includes program development, ethics, engagement in professional organizations, serving as a resource, and ELL advocacy.

Subject Specific Pedagogy: ELL
Subject Specific Pedagogy: ELL integrates aspects of pedagogy, assessment, and professionalism in English Language Learning (ELL). A student develops and assesses aspects of language curriculum development including second language instruction, methods of second language assessment, and legal policy issues.

Field Experience for ELL
Field Experience for ELL is the field experience component of the English Language Learning program. In this experience, students are required to complete a minimum of 15 hours of observations at both elementary and secondary levels and a minimum 30 hours of supervised teaching that is face-to-face with English language learners. The purpose of this course is to assess the ability of the student including their engagement in field experience activities, ability to reflect on and then plan standards-based instruction in ELL, and their ability to locate and effectively use resources for teaching ELL to meet the needs of their individual students.

Research Fundamentals

Research Foundations

Research Questions and Literature Review
The Research Questions and Literature Reviews for Educational Research course focuses on how to conduct a thorough literature review that addresses and identifies important educational research topics, problems, and questions, and helps determine the appropriate kind of research and data needed to answer one's research questions and hypotheses.