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Department of Linguistics | Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Simon Fraser University Calendar | Summer 2023

Teaching ESL Linguistics


This certificate is intended for students seeking an introduction to the theory behind the practice of teaching of English as a second language (TESL). The program emphasizes an understanding of a wide range o f concepts from linguistics and applied linguistics. Successful completion of a 30-hour practicum in an adult ESL program is also required. The Certificate requires more than five terms to complete and may be earned concurrently with an honours, major, extended minor or minor in linguistics.

While the Certificate by itself is not a specific employment credential, it constitutes basic preparation for teaching English language skills to adult learners. The certificate alone does not allow the holder to teach in the K-12 system. The certificate also provides preparation for further studies in applied linguistics and TESL. Those pursuing a long-term career in ESL should plan to take more advanced studies upon completion of the program. Monolingual students are strongly advised to take at least two courses (six credit hours) in a language other than English. 

Admission Requirements

Admission is not automatic. All candidates must complete and submit the required application form (available from the department) with a statement of purpose and all other required documents prior to one of three deadlines (September 30, January 31, May 31). An interview with a designated linguistics department member is also required.

Prospective students may begin completing certificate courses prior to program admission. However, students are strongly advised to apply as soon as possible after completing LING 200, 220 and an upper division course, preferably in linguistics, with a minimum C- grade. Those who delay may be unable to enrol in the required courses at the desired time.

In addition to the University’s admission requirements, students must demonstrate excellent spoken and written English. This requirement is more stringent than the University’s minimum English language requirement. Students whose first language is not English should consult the department well in advance of applying. Oral communication skills will be assessed during the interview.

Applications are evaluated on merit. The department considers academic standing, communication skills as assessed in the interview, interests and motivations in the statement of purpose, and personal qualities. Priority is given to those enrolled in a Simon Fraser University degree program.

Program Requirements

The program requires successful completion of 27 units as set out below, with a minimum 2.00 GPA calculated on grades in the specified required courses. Students also must complete a supervised practicum (LING 363) which includes 25 to 30 units of experience in an adult ESL classroom.

Lower Division Requirements

Students complete all of

LING 111 - The Wonder of Words (3)

Introduces students to theories about words and vocabulary. Explores topics such as the roots of the English vocabulary, how we create new words and how we learn them. Also discusses practical applications such as constructed languages for use in science fiction, and word recognition in artificial intelligence. Open to all students. Students with credit for LING 110 may not take this course for further credit. Breadth-Social Sciences.

LING 200 - Foundations of English Grammar (3)

Provides a practical overview of English grammar based on linguistic principles. Explores fundamentals of English sentence structure, grammatical categories and grammatical analysis through lectures and hands-on work in the classroom. Develops skills that are applicable in language analysis, writing and communication. Open to all students.

LING 220 - Introduction to Linguistics (3)

Explores how language works. Introduces students to the systematic nature of language by exploring the patterns of sounds, words, sentences and meanings in English and other languages. Develops problem-solving and critical thinking skills through hands-on training in pattern recognition and language data analysis. Open to all students. Breadth-Social Sciences.

Section Instructor Day/Time Location
A320 TBD
D100 Margaret Grant
Tu 10:30 AM – 12:20 PM
AQ 3153, Burnaby
D101 Tu 1:30 PM – 2:20 PM
AQ 5004, Burnaby
D103 Margaret Grant
We 10:30 AM – 11:20 AM
RCB 5118, Burnaby
D106 Th 10:30 AM – 11:20 AM
RCB 5120, Burnaby
LING 282W - Writing for Linguistics (3)

Develops skills in language analysis by focusing on reading and writing of linguistic argumentation. Explores the foundations of such argumentation in the core areas of linguistics. Students read and discuss primary literature in linguistics in order to understand how to formulate hypotheses and evaluate them. They also learn how to use writing to construct their own solutions to challenging linguistic problems. Prerequisite: LING 220. Writing/Quantitative.

Section Instructor Day/Time Location
D100 Trevor Block
Mo 10:30 AM – 11:20 AM
Th 10:30 AM – 12:20 PM
SWH 10061, Burnaby
SWH 10051, Burnaby

and two of

EDUC 220 - Introduction to Educational Psychology (3)

A survey of educational research and theories concerning motivation, learning, development, and individual differences in classroom settings. May be applied towards the certificate in liberal arts. Breadth-Social Sciences.

Section Instructor Day/Time Location
OL01 Daniel Chang
LING 100 - Communication and Language (3)

Explores the foundations of human language from a variety of perspectives. Young children acquire language effortlessly. How is this possible, and why is it so much more challenging to learn a new language later in life? How does the human brain use complex grammatical systems to communicate? Students will learn new ways to think critically about language and communication. Open to all students. Breadth-Social Sciences.

Section Instructor Day/Time Location
D100 Iouri Pankrats
Mo, We, Fr 9:30 AM – 10:20 AM
SSCB 9200, Burnaby
LING 160 - Language, Culture and Society (3)

Examines the relationship between language use and social structure. Considers how social factors such as gender, class, age, and ethnicity may be reflected in language use, as well as "big picture" topics that include multilingualism, dialect variation, language policy and linguistic stereotypes. Encourages students to think critically about the social dimensions of language. Open to all students. Breadth-Social Sciences.

Section Instructor Day/Time Location
D100 Ivelina Koleva Tchizmarova
Mo 2:30 PM – 5:20 PM
AQ 3149, Burnaby
LING 301W - Linguistic Argumentation (3)

Advanced study of the styles of written argumentation that are used in linguistic research. Prerequisite: LING 282W; or LING 222 and any lower division W course. Students with credit for LING 301 may not take this course for further credit. Writing.

LING 309W - Sociolinguistics (3)

A systematic approach to the study of linguistic variation in different areal, social, and cultural settings. Prerequisite: LING 282W. Recommended: LING 160. Writing.

Section Instructor Day/Time Location
D100 Tasnim Abedalqader
We 9:30 AM – 10:20 AM
Fr 8:30 AM – 10:20 AM
RCB 6125, Burnaby
WMC 3253, Burnaby

Upper Division Requirements

Students complete all of

Required Courses

LING 360 - Introduction to Applied Linguistics (3)

Theoretical and practical aspects of second language learning. Prerequisite: LING 282W.

Section Instructor Day/Time Location
A320 Sessional
D100 Dasha Gluhareva
Tu 12:30 PM – 2:20 PM
Fr 12:30 PM – 1:20 PM
RCB 6125, Burnaby
RCB 6125, Burnaby
LING 362 - Introduction to Teaching English as a Second Language to Adults (3)

Application of linguistic principles to the teaching of English as a second language. Prerequisite: LING 282W; or LING 221 and any lower division W course.

Section Instructor Day/Time Location
D100 Ivelina Koleva Tchizmarova
Th 2:30 PM – 5:20 PM
AQ 5038, Burnaby
LING 363 - Practicum in Teaching English as a Second Language to Adults (3)

Implementation of linguistic principles in the teaching of English as a second language, including classroom teaching practice with adult learners of English. This course is graded on a pass/fail basis. Prerequisite: LING 360, 362.

Recommended Courses

EDUC 468 - Sociocultural Perspectives on Language, Cognitive Development and EAL Instruction (4)

Designed for prospective and beginning teachers to learn more about theory and research in language acquisition, sociocultural understandings of language development and thought, bilingualism and cognition, linguistic multicompetence. Exploring the implications of research and theory for the teaching and learning of EAL in classroom contexts. Prerequisite: 60 units including 6 units in Education courses.

LING 350 - First Language Acquisition (3)

Introduction to the study of language acquisition from the point of view of linguistic structure. Prerequisite: One of LING 301W, 309W or 482W.