MA International Education (TESOL) / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course description

¿MA International Education at The University of Manchester gives students opportunities to engage in various educational theories, ideas and concepts in an international context and put them into practice.

¿The courses are taught by world-leading researchers who are really patient and always willing to help students.¿

Jinxuan Song / MA International Education

MA Education International (TESOL) will provide you with the opportunity to engage in structured study of, and reflection upon, the application of educational theories, ideas and concepts to a range of international educational and community-based contexts.

The course has been designed for teachers and other education professionals working in a range of national and international settings and is ideal if you're looking to develop your career by securing new posts or promotion within the area of TESOL.

You'll work with a truly international cohort of students.

The course offers a unique combination of policy and practice-based perspectives on education and TESOL, and is taught by outstanding, world-leading researchers who focus on the realities of professional practice using the social sciences.


  • Develop participants' critical understanding of educational theories in order to enable an informed analysis of educational systems and practices in different countries.
  • Develop participants' capacity to engage in and use research to inform and develop both their practice and their understandings of differences in practice in contrasting systems.
  • Raise participants' awareness of the influence of key concepts across international contexts, as well as the particularity of local contexts.
  • Develop participants' professional knowledge, understanding and skills in relation to their prior and emerging professional interests.
  • Enable participants to gain evaluative and analytical skills that will help them to engage critically with education policies and practices across and within national systems.

Special features

  • Education has been a discipline of study at Manchester since 1890.
  • Our students come from all over the globe, and our qualifications are recognised across the globe.

Additional course information

Optional units available include:  

  • International development and education;
  • Intercultural Communication and Education;
  • Key Issues in English Language and Education;
  • Early Years Education;
  • Education leadership;
  • Examining Educational Policy;
  • Digital, Media and Information Literacy;
  • Language Learning and Technology;
  • Multimedia Design and Development;
  • Equality, diversity and inclusion in international education;
  • Educating for Sustainability;
  • Higher education in international contexts;
  • Curriculum Internationalisation;
  • Employability in Education;
  • School Improvement;
  • Approaches and Methods in TESOL;
  • Approaches to Teaching and Learning;
  • Professional Development for Teachers;
  • Intercultural Engagement and Work and in Communities;
  • Schools working with children, families and communities;
  • Social Justice, Poverty and Place from the Global to the Local.  

We have several units that offer practical approaches to teaching and several that include visits or placements in local community organisations or schools. 

Some restrictions may apply to optional unit choices to allow as many students as possible.

Teaching and learning

The course is taught by world-leading researchers who focus on the realities of professional practice using the social sciences, including:

  • Dr Jenna Mittelmeier (an expert on issues around international student experience);
  • Dr Kirstin Kerr (an expert on education and poverty);
  • Dr Miguel Lim (an expert on higher education policy and international education, quality and rankings);
  • Dr Susie Miles (an expert on inclusive education in international contexts);
  • Professor Carlo Raffo (an expert on education and poverty, and educational equity in urban contexts);
  • Professor Julian Williams (an expert on mathematics teaching and critical pedagogy);
  • Dr Sylvie Lomer (an expert on international student mobility);
  • Dr Josef Ploner (an expert on international student migration and cultural industries);
  • Dr Zeynep Onat-Stelma (an expert in TESOL);
  • Prof Helen Gunter (known internationally for her work on policy and leadership);
  • Prof Mel Ainscow (an international expert in inclusive education);
  • Dr Steven Courtney (an expert on school restructuring, change and leadership);
  • Dr Miriam Firth (an expert on employability);
  • Dr Michael O'Donoghue (an expert in teaching and learning in higher education, and use of video);
  • Dr Heather Cockayne (an expert in distance learning and international student experience);
  • Dr Zhuo Min Huang (an expert in intercultural education and creative education);
  • Dr Nahielly Palacios-Gonzalez (an expert in English Language teacher identities);
  • Dr Alexander Baratta (an expert in English Language, and English teaching);
  • Dr Juup Stelma (an expert in teaching English as a second language);
  • Dr Drew Whitworth (an expert in digital media literacies);
  • Susan Brown (an expert in distance technology education and multimedia);
  • Dr Gary Motteram (an expert in language learning and technology). 

This is in addition to a wider team of contributors to the course with varied expertise in multiple aspects of international education.

Course units are delivered through lectures, tutorials, group-work, case-based approaches, and enquiry-based learning. We expect a high level of student participation in discussion and group work. 

Comprehensive training is provided in the use of electronic resources.

We encourage both individual and co-operative learning and research and hope to foster an ethos of lifelong learning.

We aim to build on the expertise of our students, many of whom are experienced teachers, and who bring with them a wealth of knowledge and practical experience from a wide range of different countries.

Coursework and assessment

You will study four course units in each semester, four of which are core to all students, one is core to this pathway, and three of which are optional.

The form of assessment varies by course unit; however, most involve a 3,000-word written assessment, which may be in the form of an essay, a critical review of literature, or a research report. Formative and summative feedback is provided.

The dissertation is the report of an empirical or conceptual research project investigation of an aspect of international education, and is 15,000 words in length.

Course content for year 1

  • Concepts and Practices in International Education;
  • Theories of Teaching and Learning;
  • Engaging with Education Research;
  • Approaches and Methods in TESOL;
  • Research Methods and Design. 

In addition to a wide range of optional units, and a research-based dissertation.

Course unit list

The course unit details given below are subject to change, and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

TitleCodeCredit ratingMandatory/optional
Research Methods II EDUC60452 15 Mandatory

Scholarships and bursaries

We offer a number of postgraduate taught scholarships and merit awards to outstanding applicants and international students, such as the Manchester Humanities International Excellence Scholarship .

The Manchester Institute of Education also offers a Master's bursary available to those studying in the department.

The Manchester Alumni Scholarship Scheme offers a £3,000 reduction in tuition fees to University of Manchester alumni who achieved a first-class bachelor's degree and are progressing to a postgraduate taught master's course.

For more information, visit the Funding opportunities page or explore the University's postgraduate funding database .


The course is taught by the Manchester Institute of Education (MIE) which has its own Student Hub. Here you'll find all your teaching staff and support staff as well as a place to relax with fellow students.

MIE is based in the University's Ellen Wilkinson building, which is centrally located on the University's Oxford Road campus, close to the Main Library, Alan Gilbert Learning Commons and the Students' Union.

Disability support

Practical support and advice for current students and applicants is available from the Disability Advisory and Support Service. Email: