New Trajectories in FLT PD

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The Master of Arts and Graduate Certificate in Foreign Language Teaching.

Introducing the “mini-MAFLT” option: the Foreign Language Teaching Graduate Certificate.

As of Fall 2021, applicants who want a credential in Foreign Language Teaching from Michigan State University can choose the established route of the MAFLT, completing a master’s degree in 30 credits through intentionally online courses, or choose the FLT Graduate Certificate.

Nearly 170 graduate students have enrolled in the the Master of Arts in Foreign Language Teaching program since its beginning in 2012. As of Spring 2021, we have 75 alumni (and counting) spread across the U.S. and the globe. Almost every one of them was already teaching a foreign language when they started the program. Usually they complete the program in 2 to 3 years, while working full-time. Students and alumni consistently tell us that the content, discussions, and assignments are useful to them from the first weekly module of the first course to the point when they publish their final portfolios.

However, based on input from hundreds of current and aspiring language teachers in our courses, around MSU, at conferences, and in other contexts, we realize that the MA may not be the right path for everyone. For those educators who want to invest in their professional development through taking graduate courses but who already have a master’s degree, want to supplement another graduate program, or need a few graduate courses for continuing education credits, we now offer another option: the FLT Certificate.

The Graduate Certificate in Foreign Language Teaching allows you to enroll in Michigan State University, take the same courses as students enrolled in the full MAFLT program, and earn a credential that will appear on your transcript. We call it the “mini-MAFLT” because it only requires 10 credits for completion. You will need to take three courses from the full slate of options and complete an online portfolio similar to the ones by MAFLT students that you can find in our Showcase (see

Graduate Certificate Requirements

  • 3 credits = Choose at least one: FLT 807 Methods of Foreign Language Teaching OR FLT 817 Program Development & Administration
  • 6 credits = Choose two additional FLT Courses
  • 1 credit = Complete an online Final Portfolio

The FLT certificate is intended to have two paths, depending on where you are in your career. You must take one of two required courses, either FLT 807, the foundational Methods of FLT course that is the recommended starting place for all MAFLT students, or FLT 817, the course in Program Development and Administration that is usually recommended late in the program and focuses on preparing students for leadership in their local contexts and the field. Your other two courses are entirely up to you.

Here are two possible plans for the FLT Certificate:

Early Career

Beginning with Methods:

  • Required Course: FLT 807 Methods of FLT
  • Elective 1: FLT 845 Language Concepts (Pedagogical Grammar and Corpus Analysis)
  • Elective 2: FLT 860 Foreign and Second Language Acquisition

Advancing Career

In any order you choose:

  • Required Course: FLT 817 Program Dev and Admin
  • Elective 1: FLT 815 Culture (and Interculturality) in FL Courses
  • Elective 2: FLT 881 Teaching FLs with Technology

Apply by July 1 for Fall 2021 ->

The curriculum of the MAFLT has been carefully designed and adjusted so that each of our graduates has a broad and deep foundation in the various aspects of foreign language teaching that belong in the skill set of a master teacher. If possible, we want all of our students to get the full range of instruction and the full experience that the MAFLT is intended to offer. With the certificate, though, you can choose a few courses that meet your immediate needs and interests.

Like all MAFLT students, FLT Cert students will begin with our Orientation Checklist to introduce you to the program, MSU resources, and the technology we use and recommend. Then, you will meet with the Program Director to discuss your plan, including which courses you will take, when they are offered, and how fast you will move through them.

Online Language Teaching Workshops

Looking for a quick intro or update for your ed tech skills? Learn about CeLTA’s series of 6-week online workshops here:

Center for Language Teaching Advancement