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250-hour TESOL Diploma – Methodology Module

250-hour TESOL Diploma:
Methodology Module Syllabus

This module will take you through all the stages of planning and delivering effective ESL lessons. In addition, it will provide you with the ability to:

  • evaluate and differentiate various methods and sequences of instruction within the Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) approach for teaching grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation, speaking, writing, listening, and reading comprehension lessons;
  • produce effective language-focused (grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation) lesson plans at different levels of proficiency;
  • produce effective skills-focused (listening, speaking, reading and writing) lesson plans at different levels of proficiency;
  • use different lesson planning models (PPP, ESA, TTT, and TBL) for different ESL levels (Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced, etc.);
  • supplement or fully replace the ESL textbook using authentic materials and improve the curriculum with lesson plans that meet learners’ needs;
  • reflect on different testing and assessment strategies; and
  • reflect on classroom management strategies and techniques.

The Methodology module contains twenty-two (22) chapters. Each chapter has video tutorials, quizzes, sample lesson plans, and a “Further Reading” section with links to articles on various theories and teaching strategies topics.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction to First Language Acquisition

  • First Language Acquisition and Behaviorism
  • An innate language-learning capacity
  • LAD and Universal Grammar (UG)
  • The Grammatical development of children
  • Telegraphic speech
  • The development of inflections and function words
  • The development of transformations

2. A Summary of the History of Second Language Teaching

An overview of approaches to Second Language Acquisition (SLA). This chapter contains a very condensed and subjective synopsis of the main currents in the history of language teaching methodology. You will read about the major approaches to language learning, their main characteristics and techniques: 

  • Grammar Translation (GT)
  • Direct Method (DM)
  • Audio-Lingual Method (ALM)
  • Communicative Language Teaching: Communicative Approach (CA)

3. The Communicative Approach

  • Principles of the Communicative Approach (CA)
  • Functions and exponents (functional language vs. grammatical language)
  • The role of the teacher and interactive patterns (pair, group and individual work)
  • Communicative Language Teaching (CLT): Jeremy Harmer and Scott Thornbury
  • Grammatical Competence (GC) vs. Communicative Competence (CC)

4. The First Class

  • Characteristics of the first class
  • How to make a good impression on your students
  • The purpose of icebreakers and fillers
  • Assessing your students’ level and previous knowledge through icebreakers
  • Types of activities for the first class

5. Lesson Planning: Presentation Stage (The PPP Model)

  • Teaching grammar using the Communicative Approach
  • The importance of context in the interpretation of functions
  • Ways of presenting grammar: the PPP Model
  • The 6 steps of the presentation stage and their characteristics
  • Sample lesson plans: Presentation Stage

6. Elicitation Techniques: Concept Chequing Questions

  • What is Elicitation? How does it work?
  • What are Concept Questions? 
  • Types of Concept Questions

7. Lesson Planning: Practice Stage (The PPP Model)

  • Characteristics of the Practice Stage
  • Types of controlled practice activities: mechanical, meaningful and communicative drills; written controlled practice activities
  • Evaluate controlled practice activities in ESL textbooks
  • Develop the practice stage of a grammar lesson, and demonstrate knowledge of types of controlled practice activities and oral activities

8. Lesson Planning: Production Stage (The PPP Model)

  • Characteristics of the Production Stage
  • Learners’ problems with producing the target language
  • The role of the teacher in the Production Stage
  • Grouping students in the Production Stage
  • Identify students’ problems in the Production Stage
  • Create activities for use in the Production Stage that clearly adheres to the established theme and context of the presentation and practice stage of a lesson.

9. How to Write A Lesson Plan

  • Lesson planning: characteristics and major components
  • The elements of the cover page and the procedure pages of a lesson plan
  • Creating learning objectives: S.M.A.R.T objectives and Bloom’s taxonomy
  • How to apply the PPP framework for designing a grammar lesson
  • Sample lessons: teaching grammar communicatively at low levels

10. More on Lesson Plan Frameworks

  • Test -Teach -Test (TTT Model)
  • Engage-Study-Activate (ESA Model) and its variations (EAASSA, ESSASSA, etc.)
  • How to incorporate major frameworks into your planning

11. Class Observation

  • Understand the purpose and benefits of classroom observation
  • Reflect on teachers’ attending behavior and its implication in the classroom.
  • Reflect on specific aspects of teaching, their strengths and weaknesses.
  • Gain insight into teaching strategies and methods that could help with your future teaching performance.
  • Acquire the tools to provide constructive feedback

12. Teaching Vocabulary

  • Techniques to present vocabulary
  • When to present vocabulary in a lesson
  • Activities for dealing with vocabulary at different levels and teaching contexts
  • Sample speaking and vocabulary lesson plans

13. Teaching Skills: Speaking

  • Introduction to the four major skills: speaking, writing, listening and reading
  • The characteristics of a speaking lesson
  • Types of speaking activities
  • The role of the teacher in a speaking lesson
  • Staging a speaking lesson
  • Teacher talk time (TTT) and the role of the teacher in a speaking lesson
  • Sample speaking lesson plans

14. Teaching Skills: Listening

  • The purpose of listening comprehension in the CLT classroom
  • Becoming an active listener
  • Exploiting listening materials
  • Skimming and scanning strategies: types of listening activities and tasks
  • Types of listening activities and tasks
  • Lesson plan formats for a listening lesson with or without a textbook
  • Using songs for listening practice

15. Class Observation

  • Observe a new teacher teach a high-intermediate class, and reflect on specific areas of the lesson.
  • Gain insight into teaching strategies and methods that could help with your future teaching performance.
  • Create a listening lesson plan using an appropriate lesson plan format (ESA- PPP)

16. Teaching Skills: Reading

  • Characteristics of the reading comprehension skill in the communicative classroom
  • Reading techniques to develop skim and scan reading
  • Types of reading activities or tasks
  • Steps in a reading comprehension lesson
  • Develop a skills-focused lesson using the appropriate format (PPP or ESA).

17. Teaching Skills: Writing

  • Characteristics of the writing skill in the communicative classroom 
  • The elements of a writing lesson
  • How to help ESL students develop their writing skill 
  • Steps in a writing lesson: examples of writing tasks 
  • An introduction to Task-based Learning (TBL)
  • Types of tasks in TBL
  • TBL lesson plan format

18. Class Observation

  • Observe how teaching strategies, theories, and methods studied in the teacher-training program are used in the classroom. 
  • Collect data on the main features of the lesson while monitoring their effectiveness. 
  • Reflect on your teaching practice; what you would use as a model to implement, and what you would need to work on before teaching a class. 

19. Correcting Students’ Mistakes

  • Language mistakes or language errors
  • Why students make mistakes
  • Types of mistakes/errors students make
  • The purpose of correction 
  • Techniques for responding to spoken, written and pronunciation errors

20. Classroom Management

  • Identify the different roles a teacher performs in the classroom
  • Reflect on behavioural issues and find ways to address them with a positive attitude
  • Reflect of the physical environment of the classroom and the best setting for your type of class
  • Understand the importance of good and organized board work, and when to use it in a lesson

21. Evaluation and Testing in the ESL Classroom

  • The purpose of evaluation
  • Formative, summative and illuminative evaluation
  • Testing and types of tests
  • Approaches to test construction: Direct and Indirect Testing
  • Testing: what makes a ‘good’ test good
  • Understand Canadian Language Benchmark (CBL) levels and assessment tools

22. Using Authentic Material for Teaching English

  • Define authentic materials
  • Differentiate between authentic materials and created materials
  • Explore the use of authentic materials in the classroom
  • Identify the pros and cons of using authentic materials at different levels of proficiency
  • Design language learning activities with authentic materials
  • Define the purpose of using authentic materials: for a language focus, as a resource, stimulus, or skills practice
  • Design an integrated-skills lesson plan using authentic materials


The study modality of this module is different from the Grammar and Phonology modules. You will be assessed through written reflective essays, self-check practice, application of theory to classroom practice through lesson planning, and a final exam that focuses on two research papers. There are twenty (20) assignments and seven (7) reflective essays to complete and pass in this module.

Methodology Syllabus – Certificate in the Theory and Methodology of TESOL
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