Singapore University of Social Sciences

Pragmatics and TESOL

Pragmatics and TESOL (TSL557)

Applications Open: 01 October 2023

Applications Close: 15 November 2023

Next Available Intake: January 2024

Course Types: Modular Graduate Course

Language: English

Duration: 6 months

Fees: $2200 View More Details on Fees

Area of Interest: Linguistics and Languages

Schemes: Alumni Continuing Education (ACE)

Funding: To be confirmed

School/Department: School of Humanities & Behavioural Sciences


TSL 557 Pragmatics and TESOL examines advanced concepts and theories in pragmatics and the implications for teaching pragmatic competence in the TESOL context. Selected concepts and theories in pragmatics are examined in relation to the issue of second language or interlanguage pragmatics. Emphasis is placed on analysing and understanding learners’ interlanguage. Finally, implications for adopting appropriate teaching methods and for designing suitable materials and tests are considered carefully.

Level: 5
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY 2 YEARS
E-Learning: BLENDED - Learning is done MAINLY online using interactive study materials in Canvas. Students receive guidance and support from online instructors via discussion forums and emails. This is supplemented with SOME face-to-face sessions. If the course has an exam component, this will be administered on-campus.


  • Pragmatics and pragmatic competence; interlanguage pragmatics and TESOL
  • Speech Act Theory (Austin and Searle)
  • Speech acts: Performance and learning
  • Speech acts: Teaching methods
  • Politeness Theory: Face-threatening acts (FTAs) and mitigation strategies
  • Politeness Theory: Performance and learning
  • Politeness Theory: Teaching methods
  • The nature of reference and co-reference: Theoretical insights
  • Reference and co-reference in children’s texts
  • Reference and co-reference: Teaching methods
  • Designing materials for teaching pragmatic competence
  • Designing materials for testing pragmatic competence

Learning Outcome

  • Distinguish between pragmatics, pragmatic competence and interlanguage pragmatics
  • Discuss critically selected concepts/theories in pragmatics
  • Analyse data of learners’ interlanguage
  • Evaluate methods of teaching and testing pragmatic competence
  • Design materials for teaching pragmatic competence
  • Plan materials for testing pragmatic competence
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