The Master of Arts in Teaching - Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages online (MAT–TESOL online) offers one start date per year (September). Applications are accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis, and we are happy to help you throughout the application process so that you can be considered for your preferred start date.

Application Deadlines

September 2020

September 2020 Application Deadlines
Early Action Deadline 1 May 28, 2020
Priority Submit Deadline June 18, 2020
Final Application Deadline July 9, 2020
Classes Start August 24, 2020
1 If you fully complete your application prior to the Early Action deadline, you will receive an early admissions decision and your application fee wavied. If you apply prior to the Priority Submit deadline, your application fee will be reduced to $50. Please contact an Admissions Counselor for details. Return to footnote reference

Application Requirements

The USC Rossier School of Education maintains the same high admissions standards for its online programs that it does for its on-campus programs. We seek candidates whose academic background, professional goals, personal commitment and communication skills meet the demands of a rigorous graduate education program. To be eligible for the Master of Arts in Teaching–TESOL online program, you must meet the following requirements:

  • A bachelor’s degree or its recognized equivalent from a regionally accredited institution
  • A superior scholastic record, normally above a 3.0 GPA
  • Effective communication skills (both written and verbal) as demonstrated by academic performance and/or professional experience
  • Professional goals that align with the program and a commitment to the field clearly articulated in a personal statement
  • Official Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) scores for applicants whose academic work has been in a country other than the U.S., U.K., Australia, or English-speaking Canada

Online Application

The online application includes questions about students' personal, academic and professional background. To be considered for admission, students must have a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, or the recognized international equivalent of a U.S. bachelor’s degree. While the Admissions Committee looks for candidates whose academic background demonstrates the capability to succeed in a rigorous graduate program, prior coursework in education is not required.

Personal Essays

The application includes a statement of purpose, which allows the Admissions Committee to gain a deeper understanding of your past experiences and professional goals. Applicants will also complete two short answer questions. In addition to providing information about your background, the essays allow you to demonstrate the written communication skills that are critical for success in the program.

Timed Writing Assessment

Applicants must complete a timed writing assessment that demonstrates their writing skills, analytical ability, and knowledge related to problems of practice.

Employment Information

Students will be asked to provide information about past employment and upload their most current resume or curriculum vitae (CV).

Letters of Recommendation

A minimum of two letters of recommendation are required. Ideally, one letter should come from a supervisor who can comment on significant professional and/or teaching contributions the student has made and one letter from a faculty member or academic leader who can describe the student’s ability to perform well in a demanding graduate-level program.


Sealed, official academic transcripts must be sent directly from all postsecondary institutions students have attended, including any community college coursework. Please send all transcripts to:

Application Processing Services
USC Rossier Office of Admission and Scholarships
7900 Harkins Road
Suite #501
Lanham, MD 20706

Many schools issue transcripts electronically, either through their own web services or through vendors. If this option is available through the institutions students have attended, please specify that their encrypted transcript(s) be sent to This will expedite the delivery of their transcript(s) and the completion of their application.

Students will be asked to provide written authorization giving their consent to release your academic records, in compliance with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

Application Fee

The USC application fee is $90.

International Applicants

For students whose prior study was completed outside of the United States, they must have earned the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor’s degree to be eligible for admission.

If their native language is not English and they do not have a bachelor’s degree from a U.S. college or university, they will be required to submit a valid score from the TOEFL iBT® (Internet-based test).

The Admissions Committee also may require that students complete an oral interview to assess their English communication skills. Because the program content is delivered in English, it is critical to have the ability to understand course materials and collaborate with classmates and faculty. Oral interviews may be arranged in person, by telephone or through Web-based video conferencing.

Learn more about the international admissions requirements.

Confidentiality and Document Submission Policy

Transcripts and all other materials submitted for admission consideration become the property of USC. The university does not return or duplicate materials for any reason whatsoever. The information and materials in your submitted application are made available only to the central Office of Admission and the admission committee of the academic department or professional school to which you have applied.