Loyola University Chicago

School of Education

MEd in Language, Culture, and Curriculum



This program seeks to develop expert educators capable of serving in a variety of settings, including English as a Second Language (ESL), English as a Foreign Language (EFL), Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL), bilingual education, and general education with students labeled as English learners (ELs) or English language learners (ELLs). 

Classrooms and communities are more diverse than ever before, with a multitude of languages and cultures enriching the possibilities for learning and instruction. This increasing linguistic diversity has prompted much-needed attention to the large and growing sub-group of students labeled as English learners or emergent bilinguals. Spanning urban, suburban, and rural areas across the United States and beyond, educational stakeholders recognize the need for all teachers to integrate and support students’ languages and cultural backgrounds into curriculum and instruction.

With this context in mind, we designed the Language, Culture, and Curriculum program at Loyola University Chicago to equip all teachers with the pertinent understandings and pedagogical practices to push forward emergent bilinguals’ learning and language development across settings, including literacy, mathematics, science, social studies, world languages, and fine arts classrooms with children, adolescents, and adults. Since students develop and use language while engaged in learning, all educators can enhance their practice by adding lenses on language and culture to their curriculum.

Reflecting our deep commitment to social justice, this program centers on promoting equity for emergent bilinguals. We embrace as asset-based approach, recognizing that all students have resources that must be integrated into inclusive and welcoming environments and rigorous and engaging instruction. We challenge institutional constructs that marginalize students and focus on developing teacher expertise and advocacy to leverage change in their unique contexts. To accomplish this, the backward designed curriculum first focuses on classroom practice before considering application in schools and communities. Graduates leave with the ability to support emergent bilinguals in classrooms, as well as promote broader change for equity and justice.

Loyola faculty designed the program with the classroom teacher in mind. The 10-course Master’s degree program can be completed in 1.5 years while teaching, drawing from your current expertise and directly applying learning to your daily practice. Reflecting the responsive approach that we emphasize in our curriculum, we recognize the knowledge and experience that you bring to the program and meld course learning to make learning applicable to your setting. The curriculum focuses on solving problems of practice, with each course centering on an authentic project that directly connects to and informs your teaching. There are no lengthy research papers that only the instructor reads, but rather meaningful applications of your learning to immediately enhance and support your classroom practice with students.

To meet the widespread demand for well-prepared teachers of emergent bilinguals, we have an online cohort option that allows completion of the degree program from anywhere in the world on flexible time schedules. Mirroring the content of our in-person cohort offering in the Chicagoland area, we meticulously designed the asynchronous online curriculum to be purposeful and authentic, allowing the top-notch professors and experts in the field of EL/bilingual education to respond to your goals and needs as teachers in diverse contexts across the globe. The project-based focus allows for targeted online learning and support, rather than busywork and endless discussion boards.

In addition to completing your Master’s degree from Loyola University Chicago, the coursework also meets the requirements for the English as a Second Language (ESL) endorsement in the state of Illinois. If you work in one of the 43 states that has reciprocity agreements with the state of Illinois, the ESL endorsement can transfer to your teaching license if first attached to the Illinois license. You can learn more by clicking “Explore the Program” below. We look forward to supporting your learning and professional development in the Language, Culture, and Curriculum program.