Modern Languages (TEFL)Sch. of Languages,Cultures,Art History & Music-U. Birmingham
Price on request
- Bachelor's degree
Frequent Asked Questions
Entry requirements Number of A levels required: 3 Typical offer: BBB Required subjects: A level (grade B or above) in at least one modern language General Studies: accepted
The modern languages element of the course will be taught in the relevant language department(s), namely: French, German, Italian, Hispanic Studies (Spanish and Portuguese), the Centre for Modern Languages (Japanese, Mandarin Chinese and Arabic) and the Centre for Russian and East European Studies (Russian). The TEFL component of the programme is taught in the English Department.
You may choose one of two routes.
- Route 1: you study two languages, one for 60 credits and the other for 40 credits, along with a 20-credit module in TEFL. The following languages are available: Arabic (Beginners only), French (Advanced only), German (Beginners and Advanced), Italian (Beginners and Advanced), Japanese (Beginners only ), Mandarin Chinese (Beginners only), Portuguese (Beginners and Advanced), Russian (Beginners and Advanced), and Spanish (Beginners and Advanced). Arabic, Mandarin Chinese and Japanese are only available as 40-credit options.
- Route 2: you study one language at Advanced level for 100 credits alongside 20 credits in TEFL. Your chosen language can be French, German, Italian or Spanish.
Where a language is taken at Beginner's level, the first year will focus mainly on practical language work. Languages taken at Advanced level will combine one language module with one or more modules in the culture, history, literature or politics of the country chosen.
In the TEFL element of the course you will learn about basic issues in the teaching of English as a foreign language, including course planning, lesson design and analysis of teaching materials. You will also observe language classes and teach three short practice lessons.
You will continue to study your language(s) for the same number of credits as in Year 1 and will have a range of culture, history, literature or politics modules to choose from. You will continue to take 20 credits of TEFL and will learn how to design teaching materials, use technology in teaching, and assess students. You will also prepare and teach a number of English language classes at different levels.
The year abroad is compulsory for all students. If following Route 1, you will normally split the year between the countries of your two languages; on Route 2, you will spend the whole year in the country of the language you study. While abroad, you can either study at a university in your chosen country or countries (usually via the EU-funded Erasmus/Socrates scheme) or you can teach English there on a British Council language assistantship. Subject to approval, other supervised work placements may also be available.
In Year 4 you will follow the same routes as in Years 1 and 2. You will combine language work with an extensive range of optional culture, history, literature and politics modules centred on the areas of research expertise of the staff in the relevant language department(s). You will continue to study 20 credits of TEFL, focusing on how foreign/second languages are learnt and how individuals differ in their approach to learning a language. You will also undertake a substantial project relating to the teaching of a second language.
Teaching and assessment
We will use a variety of methods to help you improve your practical language skills, including small group conversation classes with native speakers, computer- and internet-based activities, language labs, grammar workshops and language lectures. Non-language modules will be taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and tutorials, whilst the TEFL component will involve highly practical, task-centred learning in small groups. Assessment will include a mixture of essays and other written assignments submitted throughout the year, oral presentations (including teaching practice) and end-of-year examinations.
The combination of high-level linguistic expertise in one or two foreign languages and practical skills in teaching English as a foreign language will open up employment opportunities across the world. Beyond this, you will also have acquired and developed sophisticated analytical skills, the ability to work independently and communicate effectively, and a solid intercultural grounding - in short, exactly the type of transferable skills that all employers are looking for.