Tell us a little bit about your background
I came to England all the way from Cyprus in 2007 to study BA English at the University of Leicester. Having always wanted to be a teacher, I decided to study MA TESOL straight after my undergraduate degree so that I would be qualified to teach English anywhere in the world!
What attracted you to the Programme of Study here?
I was originally attracted to the University of Leicester due to its excellent reputation for teaching and research. I knew that MA TESOL would be universally recognised and this would give me the freedom to teach across the globe. Leicester is also one of the few Universities that do not require two years teaching experience to be considered for the course. This meant that the course was directly accessible from undergraduate level as I had four months experience of teaching English in Cyprus.
Can you describe your experience of studying with the School of Education at Leicester?
Fun, challenging and friendly! Everyone on the course knows one another and are comfortable with each other. Tutors are friendly, approachable and willing to help. We have good access to the resources we need including grammar books currently used in the classroom. The course has helped a lot in terms of teaching techniques and approaches, and the practical activities and feedback we receive is really helpful. I think the personal tutor system is great! My personal tutor gave constructive feedback on assignment plans and drafts even over the Christmas holidays! I think it is fair to say you are really supported here at Leicester!
What do you enjoy most about your course?
Developing my own interests through assignments. Unlike my undergraduate degree, assignments for MA TESOL are very open, you are able to choose from a range of topics and there are no set questions which means you can really tailor your work to your own areas of interest and make it original. For our 'Materials Development' assignment, I created my own children's storybook to investigate how children's literature can be used to promote language learning. This was both creative and enjoyable and enabled me to specialise within an area of special interest.
How has your course influenced your thinking about teaching?
The practical activities have helped me to understand approaches to teaching more thoroughly and to reflect on my own methods. They have also helped me to understand student behaviour and barriers to learning.
What are your plans for the future once you have completed your degree?
I am currently applying for teaching jobs in Russia and Europe. With MA TESOL I have the opportunity to teach anywhere- Argentina, China, the Middle East, anywhere! I feel I have a treasure in my hands, an opportunity to explore the world!
One piece of advice you would give to a new student starting here?
Don't freak out! Study well but don't work too hard, have fun but not too much fun, maintain a balance and you will have a truly enjoyable experience at Leicester.