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Teaching English as a Second Language (TESOL)

0610.  Applied Language Study I:
Assessment of English learners' language and literacy development (3 s.h.)

The purpose of this graduate course is to combine foundational theory of language acquisition principles and language structure with a hands-on/field experience in diagnostic analysis and assessment of an English learner's language and literacy development. The course starts out with an overview of current theories of first and second language acquisition and bilingual and biliteracy development, with a particular focus on English. Students are introduced to the structure of English syntax, morphology, lexicon and the sound system and to multiple language assessment models which allow teachers to document English learners' progress and to address their needs with particular instructional methods and strategies. The course will feature several guest speakers, including faculty members from Temple's Language, Speech, and Hearing program who will introduce the students to current research-based methods of assessment of bilingual children's phonology. As a practicum component of the course, students will be asked to make biweekly tape recordings of the oral speech of one English learner and to collect their written work. Throughout the course they will be given an opportunity to apply the theoretical knowledge offered in the course and to assess the learner's strengths and weaknesses in morphosyntax, phonology, lexicon, and written English as well as to recommend appropriate instructional strategies and to develop targeted structural exercises that can address the learners' needs. As their final assignment they will assess the learner's overall development and progress and recommend instructional strategies, adaptations, and modifications to assist the learner in question. This learner will be either one of their own students or a student in one of the schools associated with the TESOL program. This field experience will allow the students to deepen their theoretical understanding of the structure of English, to apply their knowledge of assessment of language and literacy development and verbal and non-verbal communication, and to learn how to identify levels of language proficiency, acquisition, and content learning and to bridge theories of language learning with instructional practice.


0612.  Applied Language Study II (3 s.h.)

This course provides students with an opportunity to conduct hands-on analysis and diagnostic assessment of learner language in the areas of lexicon, semantics, and pragmatics, and to help them develop effective teaching strategies for addressing problems in these areas. Each student will be required to work with an individual ESL learner or a group of learners, to taperecord their tutoring sessions, to assess learners’ strengths and weaknesses, to analyze their linguistic development and to address learners’ needs with particular instructional methods, strategies, and targeted exercises. The goals of the course are to deepen students’ understanding of how English works on the level of discourse and to help them become more effective teachers of vocabulary and discourse structures.


0614.  Approaches to Teaching English Language Learners (3 s.h.)

The purpose of this course is to introduce both undergraduate and graduate students to current research-based methods, strategies, and resources in K-12 and adult ESL education. The course offers a critical overview of a variety of ESL methods, with the focus on recent developments in content-based, task-based, and standards-based pedagogy, critical pedagogy, pedagogy of multiculturalism, and computer-assisted language learning. Students are familiarized with the principles of needs assessment and materials selection and adaptation and are offered multiple opportunities to observe, apply, and reflect upon particular approaches. A practicum component of the course includes microteaching, observations conducted by the students in one of the schools associated with Temple's TESOL program and tutorials of English language learners. These field experiences will allow the students to deepen their knowledge and understanding of current instructional methods and technologies designed to meet the needs of English language learners.


0616.  Teaching Second/Foreign Language Skills:
Curriculum and Assessment in TESOL (3 s.h.)

This graduate course offers the students a foundation in designing and implementation of ESL curricula, programs, and assessment methods. Rather than separating language instruction into discrete skills, this course looks at the relationships among reading, writing, listening and speaking. In doing so, it promotes a holistic approach, using a pedagogy of multiliteracies framework for understanding of instructional designs teachers have available to them. The course also addresses the content of instruction an often neglected aspect of language teaching. Readings and class assignments offer students multiple opportunities to explore the forms and functions of assessment in language and literacy learning. A key component of the course is reflection about ways in which instructional activities are organized in curricula and ways in which reading, writing, listening and speaking development are assessed. The course will also discuss building support networks for English language learners both inside the schools and in students' homes and communities. A practicum component of the course includes design and implementation of thematic units and assessment methods, and selection, modification and development of classroom materials and resources.


0618.  Second Language Acquisition (3 s.h.)

This course introduces key concepts in second language acquisition (SLA) and surveys current research, which addresses linguistic, neurolinguistics, cognitive, and sociocultural aspects of second language learning and use. Classroom discussions focus on linking SLA theories and empirical research to language teaching practice. Students are required to conduct a research project on a SLA topic of their choice.

0620.  Contexts for Teaching & Learning Language (3 s.h.)

The purpose of this course is to function as an introduction to social, historical, legal, and cultural issues influencing language learning and use in the context of linguistic diversity, and to develop sensitivity to the needs of culturally and linguistically diverse students. The course begins by an overview of educational and language policies in the US, with a particular focus on the federal, state and local mandates regarding the instruction and assessment of English language learners. Then students examine the needs, experiences, values, and beliefs of culturally and linguistically diverse learners, including learners with special needs, and their families and communities. Interaction with guest speakers from Temple's Language, Speech and Hearing program (which trains bilingual speech pathologists), School Psychology Program (which trains school psychologists), and Special Education program will allow students to obtain extensive knowledge and understanding of school support services available to English language learners and their families. The discussion will highlight ways of getting support from bilingual school psychologists and speech pathologists, appropriate use of translators in home/school communication, and specially designed instruction pursuant to the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Making adaptations for English language learners with disabilities and experience in developing Individualized Education Plans for these students will be an important component of the course. Students will also be introduced to principles of intercultural communication, including the basics of non-verbal communication, and familiarized with techniques that may be employed to promote school staff's understanding and sensitivity toward cultures and languages other than English. In a practicum component of the course, students will engage in a case study of one English language learner and their family and community. This field experience will allow students to develop an in-depth understanding of how to build home/school relations. (The design and implementation of this course build on the cutting-edge research conducted by Dr. Ellen Skilton-Sylvester in collaboration with special education faculty on the legal underpinnings and best practices in special education for English language learners with disabilities).