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Department of Modern Languages

Graduate Studies

The Department of Modern Languages offers three M.A. programs:

In this section, you will find general information about Master's degrees in Modern Languages, along with specific information regarding admission, financial support, a checklist for US citizen & resident application, and a checklist for international student application.

Please contact our Graduate Program Coordinator, Dr. Earl Brown (ekbrown@k-state.edu) if you have any questions about these programs, and/or the application process.

MA Literature

The program is designed to help the student attain a high level of proficiency in all aspects of the language; how to read, analyze, interpret, and discuss in an intelligent manner a wide selection of works in French, German, or Spanish; and to synthesize the material read into an accurate and coherent picture of the French, German, or Spanish literary and cultural developments. This degree is recommended for those students who wish to teach at the secondary level or to continue graduate work elsewhere with the intention of teaching at the secondary or university level, or for students who prefer to develop their skills in language and literature in preparation for other careers.

In the literature option students may choose to complete the degree with a minimum of 24 hours of graduate courses and a thesis (typically 60-80 pages in length), they also have the option of completing 28 hours of graduate courses and writing a report (instead of a thesis), or they may complete a minimum of 30 hours of graduate course work including such evidence of scholarly effort as term papers. In addition, the M.A. candidate would take a written comprehensive exam, followed several days later by a one-hour oral exam.

Reading Lists

MA SLA

The Department of Modern Languages offers a Master of Arts in Second Language Acquisition in FrenchGerman,SpanishSecond Language Acquisition with a Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning in FrenchGermanSpanishand Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)

Second Language Acquisition in French, German, Spanish

General Description

The 30-hour M.A. program in Second Language Acquisition (French, German, Spanish, and TEFL) integrates language, linguistics, applied linguistics, pedagogy, culture, and literature. This degree program prepares graduates to work as a language instructor in higher education or enhance K-12 teaching credentials, to pursue further study at the doctoral level, or to pursue a career where advanced proficiency in a second language is necessary (e.g. governmental agency work, international business, translation and interpretation, etc.). M.A. SLA/TEFL students are equipped to teach English in a wide range of contexts, both abroad and domestically. The SLA program is designed to strengthen target language skills and cultural awareness, develop knowledge of second language learning theories and pedagogical approaches, narrow the traditional gap in graduate study between the methods of teaching and the content areas of literature and culture, promote individual inquiry in the student’s field of interest, and develop awareness of professional standards.

In the Second Language Acquisition option, students may choose to complete the degree with 1) a minimum of 24 hours of graduate courses and a thesis; 2) 28 hours of graduate courses and a report; or 3) a minimum of 30 hours of graduate courses including such evidence of scholarly effort as term papers. In addition, the M.A. candidate completes comprehensive examinations.

 

Course Requirements

Candidate’s committee must approve program of study (chosen electives, substitute course for courses not offered during student’s tenure, etc.)

SLA in French, German, and Spanish 
  • MLANG 710 Foreign Language Pedagogy (3 hours)
  • MLANG 770 Theories of Second Language Acquisition (3 hours)
  • MLANG 600 Principles of Linguistics (3 hours)
  • 2 language-specific courses on the teaching of language and culture through literature (6 hours): 
  • Two 700-level literature courses in the target language (6 hours)
    • Students without a literature background will be assigned pre-requisites for entrance to program.
  • Electives as approved by committee (3-6 hours)
  • Master’s report or thesis --if applicable-- (3 or 6 hours)

Second Language Acquisition in French, German, Spanish with a Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning

General Description

Students may pursue the M.A. program in Second Language Acquisition with a Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning in FrenchGerman, and Spanish. As part of this program, students complete coursework in linguistics, applied linguistics, pedagogy, language, culture, and literature. In addition to the graduate coursework in the Department of Modern Languages, students complete a sequence of coursework in the College of Education in order to apply for State of Kansas K-12 licensure. Consequently, students who wish to pursue a Master’s degree in Second Language Acquisition with a Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning work with advisors in both the Department of Modern Languages and the College of Education prior to applying. Please refer to the Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning, Student Handbook for further information regarding the education requirements for this degree. The program is designed to strengthen language skills and cultural awareness, develop knowledge of second language learning theories and pedagogical approaches, narrow the traditional gap in graduate study between the methods of teaching and the content areas of literature and culture, promote individual inquiry in the student’s field of interest, develop awareness of professional standards, and pursue licensure in the State of Kansas for K-12 language instruction.

Program of study for the Master’s degree in Second Language Acquisition with Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning needs to be approved by the student's committee in Modern Languages and Dr. Leah McKeeman (leahmac@ksu.edu), Graduate Program Advisor in the Department of Curriculum & Instruction.

In the Second Language Acquisition with Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning option, students complete 18 graduate hours in Modern Languages and 20 in the College of Education as described below.

 

Course Requirements

Classes in Modern Languages (18 hours) Classes in Education (20 hours) 
  • MLANG 710 Intro to FL Pedagogy (3)        
  • MLANG 770 Intro to 2nd Lang Acquisition (3)
  • 2 language-specific courses (6 hours):
    • French: FREN 742 (Cult/Lit in 2nd Lang. Learning) and 719 (Advanced Spoken and Written French)
    • German: GRMN 740 (Cult/Lit in 2nd Lang. Learning) and 731 (Advanced Spoken and Written German)
    • Spanish: SPAN 670 (Spanish Applied Linguistics) and 777 (Cult/Lit in 2nd Lang. Learning)
  • Two 700-level literature courses (6)  
  • FSHS 506 Middle Childhood & Adolescence (3)
  • EDSEP 525 Interpersonal Relations (1)
  • EDEL 620 FL Methods for Elementary Schools (3)
  • EDSP 710 Education of Exceptional Individuals (3)
  • EDCI 786 Top/Methods of Tchg Content/Reading (2)
  • EDCI 886 History of American Education (3)
  • EDCI 991 Internship, taken with EDEL 620 (1)
  • EDCI 991 Internship (Field Experience/Teaching) (4)

For more information about Education courses, please contact Dr. Amanda Morales, morales@k-state.edu.

Second Language Acquisition in Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL)

TEFL handbook & Reading List

The Department of Modern Languages offers a 30-hour Master’s degree in Second Language Acquisition / Teaching English as a Foreign Language (SLA/TEFL). This program is intended for aspiring teachers of English or for practicing teachers who wish to enhance their credentials. Upon completion of the program, students are equipped to teach English in a wide range of contexts, both abroad and domestically. The M.A. in SLA/TEFL includes coursework in second language acquisition, the teaching of English as a second / foreign language, linguistics, and in an area of concentration of the student’s choice. The program is designed to:

  • Strengthen language skills and cultural awareness;
  • Develop knowledge of second language learning theories and practical experience applying pedagogical approaches;
  • Develop knowledge in an area of concentration (e.g. linguistics, American literature, British literature) that can be used to teach advanced English content courses;
  • Promote individual inquiry in the student’s field of interest;
  • Develop awareness of professional standards.

 

Degree Requirements:

With approval of the supervisory committee, each student chooses one of the following three options:

  1. 30 hours of coursework and the M.A. Comprehensive Examinations
  2. 28 hours of coursework and the M.A. Comprehensive Examinations and a Master’s Report
  3. 24 hours of coursework and the M.A. Comprehensive Examinations and a Master’s Thesis

Required Coursework:

Core courses 
MLANG 703: Practicum in Adult TESL / Oral communication (3 hours)
MLANG 704: Practicum in Adult TESL / Written communication (3 hours) 
MLANG 600: Principles of Linguistics (3 hours) 
MLANG 710: Foreign Language Pedagogy (3 hours) 
MLANG 770: Theories of Second Language Acquisition (3 hours)

Area of concentration 
Three approved courses from one of the following eleven areas: American Literature, British Literature, Children’s Literature, Communication Studies, Creative Writing, Cultural Studies, Drama, Journalism and Mass Communication, Linguistics, Rhetoric and Composition, Women’s Studies.

Final requirement (according to program of study) 
Students choose one of the following three options: 
Option 1: Thesis 
    MLANG 899: Research in Modern Languages (6 hours) 
Option 2: Report 
    MLANG 899: Research in Modern Languages (2 hours) 
    MLANG 800: Colloquium in Modern Languages (1 hour) 
    One approved elective (3 hours) 
Option 3: Electives 
    Two approved electives (3 hours each = 6 hours)

Notes:

  1. The M.A. Comprehensive Examinations include material from students’ coursework as well as the M.A. Reading List for TEFL.
  2. Students are assigned a graduate advisor upon entry into the program. Upon finalizing their program of study, students will choose a Major Professor and supervisory committee in their area of interest.
  3. Those students who choose the Report or Thesis option will choose their topic in consultation with their Major Professor.

Reading Lists

General Information

Graduate level programs in the Department of Modern Languages further increase the students' sophistication in spoken and written language skills and train them in the specialized fields of literary study, or second language acquisition.

Master's degrees are available in French, German, Spanish, and TEFL. The program offers a limited number of Graduate Teaching Assistantships (GTA) to qualified applicants allowing them to teach language courses and gain valuable professional experience. The Department also offers a limited number of scholarships: one for promising first year students, and another for high performing second year students. Please contact the Office of Modern Languages (modlang@ksu.edu) for more information.

An array of courses provides graduate students an excellent education in literature, culture, language, second language acquisition and pedagogy, and linguistics. Many full-time faculty, GTAs and temporary instructors are native speakers. Because there is a small ratio of students to faculty members, students are closely supervised and have easy access to their professors. Students in the program have a Graduate Advisor to help outline their program of study.

Final examinations

In all program options a final comprehensive examination is required at the completion of course work. This exam is tailored to the particular M.A. option. It generally takes two years to complete the literature or SLA M.A. program while the SLA with graduate Certificate requires 2.5 to 3 years. Practicing teachers who typically take only one course per semester may need an additional year or two to complete the option in second language acquisition.

Special programs and activities

We offer summer programs in France, Germany, Spain, and other Hispanic countries. Graduate students in German may qualify for substantial scholarships in a recently expanded program for study in selected universities of Austria, Germany, or Switzerland. The university has an agreement with the University of Costa Rica and connections to a number of study abroad programs including International Students Exchange Program.

Admissions

  • For International Student Application and deadlines, please check the Graduate School page.
  • Deadline for U.S. Citizen and/or U.S. Resident Application: February 1st (for fall admission), and September 1st (for spring admission), please check the Graduate School page for application form.
Requirements for Admittance*

1) B.A. in related field (language, education, etc.) or 3 years of European University in related field, or equivalent. Students with other academic backgrounds may apply provided that they make up the courses necessary to bring them at the right level.

2) Teaching experience desirable (as a practicing or former teacher, or as a student-teacher)

3) Acceptance by a committee of graduate program faculty; basis for acceptance: the student's previous transcript, application materials, and letters of recommendation.
NOTE: For students applying to the M.A. in Second Language Acquisition with Graduate Certificate in Teaching and Learning, an initial consultation with Dr. Leah McKeeman (leahmac@ksu.edu) in the Department of Curriculum and Instruction is recommended.

*Prospective students may be accepted provisionally until deficiencies in course work or professional experience are completed satisfactorily.

See checklist for graduate application: US residents & citizens, international.

Financial Support

Graduate Teaching Assistantships

Many applicants to the Modern Languages M.A. programs qualify to be GTAs (Graduate Teaching Assistants). These positions allow our students to develop their teaching skills in a supportive and cooperative environment while earning a degree in the field of their choice, and receiving financial support. Please note that positions are limited and therefore competitive.

A GTA teaches three sections of lower-level language courses throughout the academic year. The current stipend for a nine-month contract (August to May) is $10,380, this stipend can be complemented by scholarships (email Modern Languages for more information about scholarships). All full time GTAs receive a full tuition waiver (about $4,000 for in-state tuition, or $8,900 for out-of-state) for each year as a GTA, and can join the University's health insurance program. GTAs may teach in the summer if classes are available.

If you are interested in a Graduate Teaching Assistantship, we ask that you include with your application a personal voice recording (on CD) in which you introduce yourself in English and in the language you wish to study for two or three minutes (one minute or so in each language). Include also a reading of a short text in the language to be studied. A passage of two or three minutes read from a literary selection would do nicely. We also may telephone you for an interview.

If you have questions about your specific plans and needs, we would be happy to send you additional information. Please contact our Graduate Program Coordinator Dr. Claire Dehon (dehoncl@k-state.edu).

The department of Modern Languages also offers a number of scholarships and awards for graduate students.

For other types of financial assistance (student loans or work study), please contact the Office of Student Financial Assistance, Fairchild Hall, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS 66506-1104.

Checklist for US Residents & Citizens Graduate Application

  • Completed Application available through the Graduate School. You must apply directly online through the Graduate School webpage.
  • Statement of objectives, in English (one page maximum).
  • Official transcript of all undergraduate and graduate classes.
  • Three letters of recommendation from professors and others who know your work.
  • Application fee payable to the Kansas State University Graduate School. See the Graduate School Application webpage for details.
US residents and citizens who are not English native speakers will be required to take the TOEFL and SPEAK test.

If you are requesting a Graduate Teaching Assistanship, do not forget to include a cassette tape/CD.

When your application file is complete, send all materials to the Department of Modern Languages, Graduate Program Coordinator, 104 Eisenhower Hall, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS 66506-1003, USA, we will forward it to the graduate advisor in the language you wish to study. He or she will contact you regarding your acceptance to the program and your assistantship, if you have applied for one. Your application must be approved by both the faculty in your language section and the Graduate School. This will take a few weeks. We appreciate your patience.

Checklist for International Students Graduate Application

Please be sure to contact the Graduate School for more detailed information regarding the University's admission policy of International students, and application deadlines.

  • Completed International Student Application available through the Graduate School. You must apply directly online through the Graduate School webpage.
  • Statement of objectives, in English (one page maximum).
  • Official transcript of all undergraduate and graduate classes, translated if from a non-English-speaking country.
  • Three letters of recommendation from professors and others who know your work, in English if possible.
  • Statement of financial support, with documentation (official bank statement, letter from sponsors, letter of credit, etc.). Please sign in all three boxes on the application.
  • TOEFL score documentation unless you have an undergraduate degree from a university in the United States; minimum of 560 (paper-based test), 220 (computer-based test), or 83 (iBT - internet-based test) required for admittance to Graduate School and 610/253/101-102 for student with a Teaching Assistanship.
  • SPEAK test: If you are applying for a teaching assistanship, please know that the Kansas Board of Regents mandates that any student who teaches in a university class must pass the SPEAK test / TSE (Test of Spoken English) with a score of 50 or receive a 26 on the speaking portion of the TOEFL iBT. (Please contact the English Language Program for details on the SPEAK test).
  • Application fee payable to the Kansas State University Graduate School. See the Graduate School Application webpage for details.*

*Please note that international KSU graduate students who are going on for another degree or are changing curriculum within KSU do not pay the application fee.

If you are requesting a Graduate Teaching Assistantship, do not forget to include a cassette tape/CD.

When your application file is complete, send all materials to the Department of Modern Languages, Graduate Program Coordinator, 104 Eisenhower Hall, Kansas State University, Manhattan, KS 66506-1003, USA, we will forward it to the graduate advisor in the language you wish to study. He or she will contact you regarding your acceptance to the program and your assistantship, if you have applied for one. Your application must be approved by both the faculty in your language section and the Graduate School. This will take a few weeks. We appreciate your patience.

Dr. Earl Brown
Associate Professor of Spanish and Director of Graduate Studies
ekbrown@ksu.edu
Leasure Hall 9D, (785) 532-6539