2023-24 Catalogs

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Columbia, MO 65211
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MA in Romance Languages with Emphasis in Language Teaching

Degree Requirements

A total of 30 hours selected from courses receiving graduate credit must be completed for the MALT (Master of Arts in Language Teaching). A minimum of 21 of the 30 hours must be taken in either French or Spanish. At least 15 hours must be in courses at the 8000 level or above. Of these 8000-level courses, six hours must be in the Department of Romance Languages. The remaining 9 hours may be taken from course work outside the department with the approval of the student’s academic advisor.

The number of hours of credit allowed for Special Readings (7960) and Problems (8085) may not exceed twelve. MA candidates may not take more than one of these two independent readings course per semester.

Students wishing to transfer MA credits from another university may transfer up to six hours, provided these courses were taken within the last eight years.

MALT candidates must submit a completed M-1 Program of Study to the Graduate School at least one semester before completing their comprehensive examinations.

Note: The College of Education does not offer a certification program in the field of foreign language education. However, students who do not have a teaching certificate and who are interested in completing relevant courses in the field of education while working on their MALT will need to contact the professional advisors in the School of Education. These students, with advisor’s consent, could use their 9 hours allowed outside the department-provided that they are graduate-level courses-toward courses in education. At the completion of their MA, students can work directly with the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education to see how they can be certified in the State of Missouri.

* Language/Linguistics6
Course may be take from:
FRENCH 7710History of the French Language3
FRENCH 7130Stylistics3
FRENCH 7720Structure of Modern French3
or any French language/linguistic course approved by the student's advisor
* Civilization/Culture3-6
FRENCH 7980Special Themes in French3
FRENCH 8087Seminar in French3
* Literature3-6
French: any one or two courses in French or Francophone literature at the 7000 level or above (see Graduate Courses for wide range of offering)
* Methodology/Second Language Acquisition9
FRENCH 7120Foreign Language Teaching Methodology3
or SPAN 7120 Foreign Language Teaching Methodology
FRENCH 8087Seminar in French3
or SPAN 8087 Seminar in Spanish
FRENCH 8120Bilingualism and Language Contact3
or SPAN 8120 Bilingualism and Language Contact
For students interested in education, suggested courses can include:
ESC_PS 7000Foundation of Teacher Prep I3
SPC_ED 7020Teaching the Exceptional Learner3

Preparation II (4)

**For students interested in ESL, courses can include:

  • Structure of American English (3)
  • History of the English Language (3)
  • Regional and Social Dialects of English (3)

Please Note: Courses taken outside the department must be approved by the student’s academic advisor.

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Teaching Assistants

MALT students normally have 4 semesters of support in which to complete their degree. This support will customarily take the form of a Graduate Instructorship. MA students may not teach more than ten hours per semester. A fifth and final semester may be granted in exceptional circumstances to students in good standing (i.e., no incompletes, history of good teaching, etc.). This extra semester will be awarded on the basis of departmental need and will be granted only if a request is made formally and in writing to the Graduate Studies Committee, which will make its recommendation to the entire faculty. No student will receive support beyond the fifth semester.

The normal course load for MALT candidates holding teaching assistantships is 9 hours. All MALT candidates must register for a minimum of 6 hours of graded courses included in the Master’s program in every semester in which they hold a teaching assistantship. Exceptions to this regulation must have the approval of the Graduate Studies Committee prior to registration. International students must not fall below six hours or they will lose their student status. Students who have completed all coursework may enroll in up to 6 hours per semester of 8080 (Readings) in order to prepare for the MALT exam.

The faculty and the course directors in each of the major languages will meet during the fall and winter semesters to evaluate the performance of all graduate students as students and as teaching assistants. The Director of Graduate Studies will inform all students in writing of their status following this formal performance review.

Any student who fails to have an incomplete removed within one year of its issuance will be limited to teaching one class per semester until the incomplete grade is removed. This excludes Dissertation/Thesis (9090) courses.

Comprehensive Examination

All graduate students in Language Teaching are required to pass a series of examinations in order to fulfill degree requirements.

Written Examination

All students take a six-hour written examination, which consists of three two-hour components. Two of the components include: a) Foreign Language Methodology and Second Language Acquisition; b) Applied Linguistics. In addition, each candidate will be examined in a third field of their choice, either civilization/culture or literature. The two-hour written questions will reflect the coursework completed by each candidate and appropriate texts suggested by faculty represented on the examination committee. These examinations are generally given in November and March.

The MALT examination is graded as follows: High Pass, Pass, and Fail. In order to receive a passing grade, the candidate must attain a Pass in all fields of the written examination. Should a candidate fail any part of the exam and wish second consideration for the degree (s)he must retake the failed section(s). Two failures eliminate the candidate from consideration for the MA in language teaching.

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Students desiring to work for the degree of Master of Arts, Emphasis on Language Teaching (MALT) should apply directly online to the Graduate School. Applicants can find links for information, instructions for applying, and the online application form on the Graduate School site. This online form is submitted electronically to the Graduate School, along with the application fee.

Additionally, the following materials submitted via the Graduate School's Apply Yourself system: 

  • Official transcripts from the institution(s) previously attended
  • TOEFL scores (international applicants only)
  • Photocopies of diplomas earned at colleges/universities outside the US (international applicants only)

In addition, our department requires the following materials from all applicants:

  • Departmental Graduate Studies Application
  • Three Letters of Reference
  • A 10-15 page-writing sample
  • 500-word personal statement detailing the applicant’s reasons for selecting the University of Missouri for graduate studies and academic/career goals. Applicants may also send other supporting materials, such as a résumé, if desired.

The application form and the form for reference letters are available on the Department's page.


Candidates for the MA must hold a Bachelor’s degree (or equivalent) with a grade point average of 3.0 or better in their major field of study. They must also demonstrate adequate preparation in advanced language and literature courses for admission. This will normally be four courses equivalent to a 4000-level course at the University of Missouri. At least three of these courses must be in literature or linguistics. If the Admissions Committee believes that a deficiency exists, it will prescribe additional course work (during the first year of enrollment) beyond the 30 credit hours necessary for the MALT degree. The Director of Graduate Studies will inform students of these additional requirements at the time of admission.

All non-native speakers of French/Spanish will be required to complete an online proficiency assessment prior to admission. Applicants will be contacted by the appropriate course coordinators to schedule this assessment. Students who are judged deficient in any of these areas are required to do remedial work. New graduate students who are required to do remedial work because of the departmental language proficiency examination will be retested within one year. Students must receive a passing score, or their candidacy will be terminated.

All graduate students will be assigned an advisor by the Director of Graduate Studies at the start of their first semester of graduate study.

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