Print Page
Email this Page to a Friend
Highlights new content for catalog year.:on | off
Reset text size to normal Increase text size to large Increase text size to largest

Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages This is a Track

College : EducationDegree : PHD
Department : Option : Dissertation
Program Websites :


The University of Central Florida is uniquely positioned to meet the critical need for advanced degrees in TESOL. Faculty from the College of Education and College of Arts and Humanities appraoch TESOL issues from multiple perspectives and collaborate in teaching and research.  Combining the interdisciplanary expertise of faculty in two Colleges, the PhD Track in TESOL offers students in-depth experiences in the research, theory, and practice of TESOL, as well as flexibility in selecting a complementary cognate that meets their professional goals.


Total Credit Hours Required:
78 Credit Hours Minimum beyond the Master's Degree

The Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) track in the Education PhD program requires at least 78 credit hours of study beyond the master's degree. 


  • TSL 6250 Applied Linguistics in ESOL
  • TSL 6440 Issues in TESOL Assessment
  • TSL 6540 Issues in SLA
  • TSL 5345 ESOL Methods or TSL 5085 Teaching Language Minority Students in K-12
  • EDF 6401 Statistics for Educational Data

Required Courses—45 Credit Hours

Core—24 Credit Hours

  • IDS 7501 Issues and Research in Education (3 credit hours)
  • IDS 7500 Research Seminar (variable credit and repeatable, 6 credit hours)
  • EDF 7475 Qualitative Research Methods in Education (3 credit hours)
  • EDF 7403 Quantitative Research Methods in Education (3 credit hours)
  • EDF 7463 Analysis of Survey, Record and Other Qualitative Data (3 credit hours)
  • IDS 7502 Case Studies in Educational Research (3 credit hours)
  • IDS 7938 Research Cluster Seminar or approved research methods elective (3 credit hours)

Specialization—21 Credit Hours

Students are required to take the following five courses:

  • TSL 6643 Diachronic Analysis of Second Language Acquisition Processes (3 credit hours)
  • TSL 6379 Second Language Literacy (3 credit hours)
  • TSL 6600 Second Language Vocabulary Acquisition (3 credit hours)
  • TSL 6252 Sociolinguistics for ESOL (3 credit hours)
  • IDS 7939 Professional Collaboration Around Language Issues (3 credit hours)

Students should also take a minimum of 6 credit hours of the following courses.

  • TSL 6XXX Special Topics in TESOL (3 credit hours; course may be repeated up to 9 credits)
  • TSL 7948 Doctoral Internship in TESOL (3 credit hours; course may be repeated up to 6 credits)

Cognate—9 Credit Hours

A minimum of 9 credit hours of cognate courses must be approved by the adviser and graduate program director. Possible cognates include Communication Sciences and Disorders, Community College Teaching, Exceptional Education, Global and Comparative Education, Multicultural Education, Instructional Technology, Program Administration, Reading, and other related areas.

Dissertation—24 Credit Hours

  • XXX 7980 Dissertation Research (24 credit hours minimum)

Doctoral students must present a prospectus for the dissertation to the doctoral adviser, prepare a proposal and present it to the dissertation committee, and defend the final research submission with the dissertation committee.


A qualifying examination will be required during the first year of study as an intake, diagnostic tool to determine student proficiency in TESOL. A written candidacy examination will be required to be admitted to candidacy and will normally occur at the completion of course work.


The following are required to be admitted to candidacy and enroll in dissertation hours:

  • Completion of all course work, except for dissertation hours.
  • Successful completion of the candidacy examination.
  • Successful defense of the written dissertation proposal.
  • The dissertation advisory committee is formed, consisting of approved graduate faculty and graduate faculty scholars.
  • Submittal of an approved program of study.

Additional Program Requirement:

Students must have completed a minimum of two college-level courses in a foreign language or basic proficiency in a foreign language as measured by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) oral proficiency interview (OPI) or other assessment approved by the program faculty before completion of 36 hours of study. Non-native speakers of English may use their native language to meet this requirement. This requirement may be satisfied prior to admission but must be satisfied prior to candidacy. 

Independent Learning

The dissertation satisfies the independent learning experience.

Application Requirements

For information on general UCF graduate admissions requirements that apply to all prospective students, please visit the Admissions section of the Graduate Catalog. Applicants must apply online. All requested materials must be submitted by the established deadline.

In addition to the general UCF graduate application requirements, applicants to this program must provide: 

  • One official transcript (in a sealed envelope) from each college/university attended.
  • A master's degree in a closely related field.
  • Official, competitive GRE score taken within the last five years.
  • Three letters of recommendation no more than one year old from people who can attest to your potential and ability for doctoral level work.
  • Goal statement.
  • Resume.
  • A master's thesis or two original papers related to graduate coursework
  • An interview may be required once the application materials are received.
  • Applicants to this program are strongly encouraged to complete the necessary information requested for the ETS PPI (Personal Potential Index) report that is available during the GRE examination.  All official PPI reports must be submitted directly to the UCF College of Graduate Studies (use UCF Institution Code: 5233).

Application Deadlines

All application materials must be submitted by the appropriate deadline listed below.

Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages Fall Priority Fall Spring Summer
Domestic Applicants Dec 20Feb 15
International Applicants Dec 20Jan 15
International Transfer Applicants Dec 20Feb 15


Graduate students may receive financial assistance through fellowships, assistantships, tuition support, or loans. For more information, see Student Finances, which describes the types of financial assistance available at UCF and provides general guidance in planning your graduate finances. The Financial Information section of the Graduate Catalog is another key resource.


Fellowships are awarded based on academic merit to highly qualified students. They are paid to students through the Office of Student Financial Assistance, based on instructions provided by the College of Graduate Studies. Fellowships are given to support a student’s graduate study and do not have a work obligation. For more information, see Fellowships, which includes descriptions of UCF fellowships and what you should do to be considered for a fellowship.