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MA Tesol vs MAAL vs online degrees etc. Help me PLEASE :)
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King James



Joined: 31 Dec 2012

PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 5:51 pm    Post subject: MA Tesol vs MAAL vs online degrees etc. Help me PLEASE :) Reply with quote

I've been through this site back and forth and read so many different things about furthering my education. I'll lay at where I am at right now.
I'm finishing up a Biology degree with a minor in Biochem and Psychology in April 2013. I completed a semester of exchange in Korea and absolutely loved it.

With school finishing, I want to pursue teaching English as my full time career. Note: I am a very ambitious person and will put in the work to guarantee success. My goal is to teach English in a Korean University.
A lot of the posts I've gone through are 3-4 years old and I'm not sure how much things have changed recently.

With my goal in mind, Iíd like to know a little bit more about my options to get to this point. Iíll list what Iíve gone through on here.

1. Complete a MA TESOL or MA Applied linguistics at a country in Canada or USA (unfortunately for Canada, they require a 1 year TESL prereq before being admitted into a MA program)

2. Complete an MA TESOL program at a Sookmyung or another Korean University

3. Complete a distance education MA TESOL or MA Applied linguistics while working at a Hakgwon or public school in Korea. Thesis are available to do even though it is distance education from what Iíve read. I would definitely want to do a thesis because I too fear a course-work MA may not be enough in the future.

4. Get a B.ED from a Canadian University (but mine would be in Biology and Chemistry) and work at an international school in Korea. I was wondering if this option could ever lead into an English teaching job at a University.

I was wondering, given my situation, what would be the best route for me. Could you order these for me? And give me more options? I am worried about a distance MA, as there are some very mixed opinions on these in the threads that are a few years old. However, getting admitted to an MA Applied Linguistics or TESOL in Canada or USA is very strict and difficult.

If you have knowledge in this subject area, or have gone through these situations, or really know anything about this. Please feel free to comment and help me Smile Anything is extremely appreciated.
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FastForward



Joined: 04 Jul 2011

PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 7:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was thinking about doing a distance MA in education or TESOL. Read a lot of previous threads as well. I want to teach long term in Korea, so I thought an MATESOL would be the best option, but then if I go back to the states, it seems like it would be worthless. I thought maybe a masters in education would open the same doors in Korea, but could be applied back in the states as well.
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ttompatz



Joined: 05 Sep 2005
Location: Kwangju, South Korea

PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 7:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If working at the tertiary level in EFL is your end goal then a B.Ed is a (albeit better paying in the long run) step sideways. An MA in a related field is the best option and one with a thesis is the best option of the 3 TESOL related options with an eye to a PhD in linguistics at the far end of the tunnel.

A MA from a foreign university is looked at with more esteem than a MA from Korean one but both will get you to the game.

If your goal is $$ then a B.Ed with a goal to being a teacher in the physical sciences in an internationally accredited school will pay better in the long run but will have less "prestige".

.
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FastForward



Joined: 04 Jul 2011

PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 8:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ttompatz wrote:
If working at the tertiary level in EFL is your end goal then a B.Ed is a (albeit better paying in the long run) step sideways. An MA in a related field is the best option and one with a thesis is the best option of the 3 TESOL related options with an eye to a PhD in linguistics at the far end of the tunnel.

A MA from a foreign university is looked at with more esteem than a MA from Korean one but both will get you to the game.

If your goal is $$ then a B.Ed with a goal to being a teacher in the physical sciences in an internationally accredited school will pay better in the long run but will have less "prestige".

.


What is your opinion on M.ED vs MATESOL? Could both be used to obtain the same types of jobs in southeast asia? Do you think one opens up more opportunities than the other?
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ttompatz



Joined: 05 Sep 2005
Location: Kwangju, South Korea

PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FastForward wrote:
ttompatz wrote:
If working at the tertiary level in EFL is your end goal then a B.Ed is a (albeit better paying in the long run) step sideways. An MA in a related field is the best option and one with a thesis is the best option of the 3 TESOL related options with an eye to a PhD in linguistics at the far end of the tunnel.

A MA from a foreign university is looked at with more esteem than a MA from Korean one but both will get you to the game.

If your goal is $$ then a B.Ed with a goal to being a teacher in the physical sciences in an internationally accredited school will pay better in the long run but will have less "prestige".

.


What is your opinion on M.ED vs MATESOL? Could both be used to obtain the same types of jobs in southeast asia? Do you think one opens up more opportunities than the other?


What do you want to do? Do you want to teach ESL, EFL, train teachers to do so... or
do you want to focus on other aspects of education (administration perhaps?).

If the end goal is just a uni job they both get you there.
If the end goal is a uni job with options elsewhere or at home - they both get you there (lots of TESOL programs (teach teachers or teach ESL) running in the states and every year there is a greater need for ESL programs in both the public domain and private opportunities for those who are more entrepreneurial.

Apples or cherries. They are both fruits. They both taste good. They both make great pies. Which do you prefer?

.
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misher



Joined: 14 Oct 2008

PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It also depends how much money you want to spend.

You can do an MA TESOL distance and pay in instalments while working full-time at a hagwon.

Or you can go all out, attend a reputable US school (NYU or Columbia's Teachers College for example) and drop 45 g's.

Many will scoff at option number 2 but one of my former colleagues who taught in SK for 3 years at an adult hagwon just completed his MA in applied linguistics at Columbia's Teachers College and got quite a few offers from South Korea and Japan for uni positions and he was OUT of the country. Why? Well countries like South Korea go nuts for Ivy/big name degrees so if South Korea is something you want you might want to think long-term. Unis also know that if you graduate from a good reputable school there is probably a less chance (although not guaranteed) that you will not be some free riding slouch.

30-40k debt can easily paid back within 1.5 years as long as you have a good uni job and corporates/privates. With a brand name MA you WILL get privates and corporates.
That brand name might also save your butt when you are 38 years old and your university decides to clean house save a few.

Also there are more and more MA TESOLS coming into the job market as 100% online study from brick and mortar unis becomes more ubiquitous and cheap. When I taught in South Korea, every Tom Dick and Harry that thought about sticking around for more than a few years was scrambling to do a distance MA TESOL. They will be your competition for the shrinking number of good uni jobsin the next 10-15 years. Something to set yourself aside on paper will help IMO.

However I'm sure a lot of people here will disagree with me and say just knock out the MA by doing the cheapest option possible with the least amount of time commitment. I agree if you're not going to take EFL uni teaching seriously however you seem like a serious cat. Just my 200 won.
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Soldier



Joined: 21 Oct 2011

PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 5:06 am    Post subject: 20.69 Won Reply with quote

2 can cents equals 20.69 won as of 29 Jan 13 IAW BOC exchange rates.

So it your 20.69 won's worth.

Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing
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Seoul_newbie



Joined: 29 Nov 2012
Location: Seoul

PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 6:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why not teach biology / medical English at a Korean university? Get your masters in it and some teaching experience. You will have an nice little niche and can always go home with a bankable degree even if things go south in Korea.
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Soldier



Joined: 21 Oct 2011

PostPosted: Tue Jan 29, 2013 7:30 pm    Post subject: 2 cents worth... Reply with quote

Would that your 20.69 won's worth?

Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing Laughing

Don't worry it's good...just wanted a chance to play with the exchange rate so it makes for a good laugh.
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King James



Joined: 31 Dec 2012

PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

misher wrote:
It also depends how much money you want to spend.

You can do an MA TESOL distance and pay in instalments while working full-time at a hagwon.

Or you can go all out, attend a reputable US school (NYU or Columbia's Teachers College for example) and drop 45 g's.

Many will scoff at option number 2 but one of my former colleagues who taught in SK for 3 years at an adult hagwon just completed his MA in applied linguistics at Columbia's Teachers College and got quite a few offers from South Korea and Japan for uni positions and he was OUT of the country. Why? Well countries like South Korea go nuts for Ivy/big name degrees so if South Korea is something you want you might want to think long-term. Unis also know that if you graduate from a good reputable school there is probably a less chance (although not guaranteed) that you will not be some free riding slouch.

30-40k debt can easily paid back within 1.5 years as long as you have a good uni job and corporates/privates. With a brand name MA you WILL get privates and corporates.
That brand name might also save your butt when you are 38 years old and your university decides to clean house save a few.

Also there are more and more MA TESOLS coming into the job market as 100% online study from brick and mortar unis becomes more ubiquitous and cheap. When I taught in South Korea, every Tom Dick and Harry that thought about sticking around for more than a few years was scrambling to do a distance MA TESOL. They will be your competition for the shrinking number of good uni jobsin the next 10-15 years. Something to set yourself aside on paper will help IMO.

However I'm sure a lot of people here will disagree with me and say just knock out the MA by doing the cheapest option possible with the least amount of time commitment. I agree if you're not going to take EFL uni teaching seriously however you seem like a serious cat. Just my 200 won.


thanks a lot, it's a really tough decision. Part of me wants to get started in South Korea right away teaching but I'm wondering if I'll kick myself in the ass later for not getting the MA from a University in North America. I'd have to look at the requirements for these schools because english was not my undergrad.

While searching on the internet for schools that offer MA TESOL, it was hard for me to find a lot of information on it.
Have you heard anything about the MA TESOL program at the Michigan State University? They don't require any prior knowledge or experience in english to enter their program and it's right around where I live. But because I haven't heard much information about it, I am a little scared.
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King James



Joined: 31 Dec 2012

PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2013 6:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seoul_newbie wrote:
Why not teach biology / medical English at a Korean university? Get your masters in it and some teaching experience. You will have an nice little niche and can always go home with a bankable degree even if things go south in Korea.


Oh do they really have that? I had no idea. What would I need? A master's in biology? or a masters in Education? That does sound pretty solid but I've never heard of doing that Very Happy
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young_clinton



Joined: 09 Sep 2009

PostPosted: Wed Jan 30, 2013 7:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There are two main things that I would look at for as far as a Masters. One is you don't really want to spend money on an online Master's. Another is you want the degree to be accredited by a western accreditation group. I don't know if all Korean universities would meet western accreditation standards. Remember you're spending a lot of money for the degree so you should get a lot out of it.
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Allthechildrenareinsane



Joined: 23 Jun 2011
Location: Lost in a Roman wilderness of pain

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 3:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

King James wrote:
misher wrote:
It also depends how much money you want to spend.

You can do an MA TESOL distance and pay in instalments while working full-time at a hagwon.

Or you can go all out, attend a reputable US school (NYU or Columbia's Teachers College for example) and drop 45 g's.

Many will scoff at option number 2 but one of my former colleagues who taught in SK for 3 years at an adult hagwon just completed his MA in applied linguistics at Columbia's Teachers College and got quite a few offers from South Korea and Japan for uni positions and he was OUT of the country. Why? Well countries like South Korea go nuts for Ivy/big name degrees so if South Korea is something you want you might want to think long-term. Unis also know that if you graduate from a good reputable school there is probably a less chance (although not guaranteed) that you will not be some free riding slouch.

30-40k debt can easily paid back within 1.5 years as long as you have a good uni job and corporates/privates. With a brand name MA you WILL get privates and corporates.
That brand name might also save your butt when you are 38 years old and your university decides to clean house save a few.

Also there are more and more MA TESOLS coming into the job market as 100% online study from brick and mortar unis becomes more ubiquitous and cheap. When I taught in South Korea, every Tom Dick and Harry that thought about sticking around for more than a few years was scrambling to do a distance MA TESOL. They will be your competition for the shrinking number of good uni jobsin the next 10-15 years. Something to set yourself aside on paper will help IMO.

However I'm sure a lot of people here will disagree with me and say just knock out the MA by doing the cheapest option possible with the least amount of time commitment. I agree if you're not going to take EFL uni teaching seriously however you seem like a serious cat. Just my 200 won.


thanks a lot, it's a really tough decision. Part of me wants to get started in South Korea right away teaching but I'm wondering if I'll kick myself in the ass later for not getting the MA from a University in North America. I'd have to look at the requirements for these schools because english was not my undergrad.

While searching on the internet for schools that offer MA TESOL, it was hard for me to find a lot of information on it.
Have you heard anything about the MA TESOL program at the Michigan State University? They don't require any prior knowledge or experience in english to enter their program and it's right around where I live. But because I haven't heard much information about it, I am a little scared.


Just from browsing their website (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/about/), it seems they have a pretty good program. Some things that stuck out for me regarding quality:

1.) The GRE is required for admission (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/admissions/)
2.) A teaching practicum is required for the degree (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/course-info/)
3.) A thesis or certifying examination is also required (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/course-info/)
4.) The faculty for the program all seem really good, w/ PhDs from good universities and lots of publications (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/faculty/)

Compared w/ most online or distance MA programs, you're likely to get a much better education at MSU. I'd say go for it if you have the time (and don't mind going into debt).
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misher



Joined: 14 Oct 2008

PostPosted: Thu Jan 31, 2013 10:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Just from browsing their website (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/about/), it seems they have a pretty good program. Some things that stuck out for me regarding quality:

1.) The GRE is required for admission (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/admissions/)
2.) A teaching practicum is required for the degree (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/course-info/)
3.) A thesis or certifying examination is also required (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/course-info/)
4.) The faculty for the program all seem really good, w/ PhDs from good universities and lots of publications (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/faculty/)

Compared w/ most online or distance MA programs, you're likely to get a much better education at MSU. I'd say go for it if you have the time (and don't mind going into debt).


MSU's program, I heard, is pretty good. From what I've heard it is small which is great as you will get a lot more attention from your advisor's and professors.





S. Gass is also the department head I think? She definitely is one of the big guns in SLA so make sure if you go there to get into her SLA class that an MA TESOL will require.

In my OPINION, you will get way WAY more out of studying residentially there than doing a distance MA from the UK or Australia. Sure it will cost (are you out of state? if not the its pretty cheap all things considered) but you can pay that back once you get to Korea. Korea isn't going anywhere dude and you're still really young.

Another thing is that there will probably be Korean nationals in that program. The network opportunities will be there which is something a distance program doesn't give.

I'm currently finishing my MA in Applied Linguistics in the States and don't regret one bit of it.

Another thing about studying at a Korean uni. A colleague of mine did his MA at Korea University and used the credits to transfer to an Ed'M program in the states. Why? He said he will have a much MUCH better chance at getting a lecturing position back in SK with an American Ed'M.

just something to think about.
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Allthechildrenareinsane



Joined: 23 Jun 2011
Location: Lost in a Roman wilderness of pain

PostPosted: Mon Feb 04, 2013 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

misher wrote:
Quote:
Just from browsing their website (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/about/), it seems they have a pretty good program. Some things that stuck out for me regarding quality:

1.) The GRE is required for admission (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/admissions/)
2.) A teaching practicum is required for the degree (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/course-info/)
3.) A thesis or certifying examination is also required (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/course-info/)
4.) The faculty for the program all seem really good, w/ PhDs from good universities and lots of publications (http://linglang.msu.edu/tesol/faculty/)

Compared w/ most online or distance MA programs, you're likely to get a much better education at MSU. I'd say go for it if you have the time (and don't mind going into debt).


MSU's program, I heard, is pretty good. From what I've heard it is small which is great as you will get a lot more attention from your advisor's and professors.





S. Gass is also the department head I think? She definitely is one of the big guns in SLA so make sure if you go there to get into her SLA class that an MA TESOL will require.

In my OPINION, you will get way WAY more out of studying residentially there than doing a distance MA from the UK or Australia. Sure it will cost (are you out of state? if not the its pretty cheap all things considered) but you can pay that back once you get to Korea. Korea isn't going anywhere dude and you're still really young.

Another thing is that there will probably be Korean nationals in that program. The network opportunities will be there which is something a distance program doesn't give.

I'm currently finishing my MA in Applied Linguistics in the States and don't regret one bit of it.

Another thing about studying at a Korean uni. A colleague of mine did his MA at Korea University and used the credits to transfer to an Ed'M program in the states. Why? He said he will have a much MUCH better chance at getting a lecturing position back in SK with an American Ed'M.

just something to think about.


Thomas Lovik is the department chair, but Gass does hold the the title of university distinguished professor and is the director of their Second Language Studies program. She's definitely one of the big names in SLA, so all the more reason for the OP to consider MSU's program.
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