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Undergraduate Program

Bachelor of Arts in Applied Linguistics 

Mission Statement

The mission of the Department of Applied Linguistics and English as a Second Language is to pursue excellence in research and teaching in Applied Linguistics: the application of theoretical perspectives on language and communication to the solution of real-world problems. Faculty research focuses on three broad areas and the interconnections between these areas: (1) Language and Literacy Learning and Teaching, (2) Language Analysis and Use, and (3) Applied and Critical Perspectives on Language, Culture, and Society. At the doctoral level, we prepare students to conduct empirical applied linguistics research and to take on leadership positions in the field of applied linguistics. At the MA level, we prepare students for positions in language teaching, curriculum development, program administration, and related careers. At the undergraduate level, we provide applied linguistics majors a thorough grounding in the study of language and prepare them for a variety of career options or further study in fields in which the scientific investigation of language is significant. In addition to our degree programs, the department serves the university and the greater Atlanta community by providing exemplary academic English language instruction to both matriculated and non-matriculated students. Reflecting the goals of the wider university, the department seeks to provide a range of activities which prepare students to think critically, make ethical and informed choices, appreciate diverse cultures and ideas, become creative problem-solvers, and demonstrate responsible citizenship.



The mission of the B.A. in Applied Linguistics is to provide a thorough grounding in the study of language analysis, use, and acquisition to prepare students for a variety of options for employment or further study in fields in which the scientific study of language is significant, e.g: anthropology, speech and hearing science, psychology, cognitive science,  foreign language teaching (including English as a second/foreign language), lexicography, and text and discourse analysis.



The Master’s degree in Applied Linguistics integrates the study of linguistic theory with practical applications and focuses on the language acquisition needs of the adult or near-adult learner of an additional language. Students receive the theoretical and practical foundational knowledge needed to teach language at the postsecondary level and to progress to doctoral work in applied linguistics or other language-study or language-teaching related areas.


Learning Opportunities

Students in the Applied Linguistics program have the chance to learn:

  • One or more foreign languages
  • Ways of using language to communicate effectively
  • The power of language in politics, the media, and advertising
  • The (mis)communication that can result from cultural differences
  • Cognitive, social, and neurological processes involved in language acquisition
  • Physical and psychological aspects of language production and comprehension 

Language Studies BA Academic Program

The department of Applied Linguistics offers undergraduate major and minor programs. Click here or see the menu on the left for more information.

Certificate in Teaching EFL

Students in the Language Studies Program can also earn a Certificate in TEFL to use while seeking employment overseas as teachers of EFL.

Frequently Asked Questions about the TEFL certificate

Georgia State University

Georgia State University is a leading research university located in downtown Atlanta, Georgia. The university is the second largest in the state and the largest in the Atlanta metropolitcan area, with a total enrollment of approximately 35,000 students from all 50 states and 117 countries. The university offers 52 undergraduate and graduate degree programs with more than 200 majors. There are six college-level units of the university: Arts and Sciences, Business, Education, Health and Human Services, Law, and Policy Studies.

Click here to go to the GSU website.

Click here for more information about Atlanta.

Additional Information

Dr. Kris Acheson-Clair
Department of Applied Linguistics & ESL
One Park Tower, 12th floor
34 Peachtree Street
Phone: 404-413-5591
Website for Applied Linguistics & ESL


I found the teachers to be both accessible, helpful, and
experienced. They had the perfect balance of overseas teaching
experience and professional training. The GSU TEFL certificate
course has helped me professionally because I was able to secure a
teaching position with the world's most popular English school.

Ricky May (China), TEFL certificate, 2005

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