Monday 03 March 2014


British Council and University of Southampton launch online Masters degree in English Language Teaching worldwide 

Collaboration extends the University’s global reach in the English Language Teaching sector

An online Masters degree in English Language Teaching is being launched worldwide thanks to a collaboration between the British Council and the University of Southampton.

Combining the British Council’s expertise in English language teaching and for promoting quality UK higher education on a global scale with the University of Southampton’s reputation as a leading UK institution, the online Masters degree extends the partnership’s global reach in the English Language Teaching sector. 

The online MA will now be offered across the world to individuals, ministries of education and education institutions for their teachers. 

This builds on the highly successful launch of the course in Mexico in a five year partnership between the two organisations in which teachers in Mexican state universities have been able to study towards a UK postgraduate Diploma and Masters degree since 2008.  Now teachers globally will benefit from the same innovative online approach to distance learning delivered by the British Council and University of Southampton partnership and the extensive Applied Linguistics expertise of Southampton’s academics. 

Welcoming the course’s development, Anna Searle, Director of English Language at the British Council said: “As an organisation, the British Council is committed to working with UK partners and institutions to deliver high quality in response to English language needs of the international community. This partnership is an excellent example of how we can successfully do just that.

 “The University of Southampton is one of the UK’s most well-respected educational institutions and we are very pleased to be working with them on this English Language Teaching initiative for students across the globe.”

Vice-Chancellor of the University of Southampton Professor Don Nutbeam comments:  “This partnership is a great example of how the University can deliver excellence in teaching to students around the world in an innovative way – giving them access to the considerable experience of our academics, who are experts in the field of English Language Teaching.

“I am delighted the University is working with the British Council on this project and benefiting from its extensive global reach and I look forward to building on the already excellent relationship we have with the organisation.”

From February 2014, the first global cohort of students commenced the two and a half year online Masters course. The partners expect the Masters to contribute to the professionalisation of English Language Teaching globally, as well as give career and development opportunities to teachers the world over.

The University of Southampton will be responsible for providing oversight of the online teaching materials and overall academic quality assurance and awarding the Masters degree. The British Council will be providing e-tutoring and assisting with the recruitment of students, and has been involved in course development.

The worldwide launch of the course will take place at the University of Southampton on Wednesday 12 March 2014.

Notes to Editor


If you have a question or would like further information about the course, please contact the University of Southampton’s admissions team:

For more information about the British Council, please contact Kristen McNicoll in the British Council Press Office on +44 (0)207 389 4967 or

About the British Council

The British Council is the UK’s international organisation for educational opportunities and cultural relations. We create international opportunities for the people of the UK and other countries and build trust between them worldwide. 

We work in more than 100 countries and our 7000 staff – including 2000 teachers – work with thousands of professionals and policy makers and millions of young people every year by teaching English, sharing the Arts and delivering education and society programmes.

We are a UK charity governed by Royal Charter. A core publically-funded grant provides less than 25 per cent of our turnover which last year was £781m. The rest of our revenues are earned from services which customers around the world pay for, through education and development contracts and from partnerships with public and private organisations. All our work is in pursuit of our charitable purpose and supports prosperity and security for the UK and globally.

For more information, please visit: You can also keep in touch with the British Council through and

About University of Southampton

The University of Southampton is one of the leading centres for modern languages in the UK, with a fresh approach to language study and academics who are actively involved in research.  For more information visit:

The University of Southampton is a leading UK teaching and research institution with a global reputation for leading-edge research and scholarship across a wide range of subjects in engineering, science, social sciences, health and humanities.

With over 23,000 students, around 5000 staff, and an annual turnover well in excess of £435 million, the University of Southampton is acknowledged as one of the country's top institutions for engineering, computer science and medicine. We combine academic excellence with an innovative and entrepreneurial approach to research, supporting a culture that engages and challenges students and staff in their pursuit of learning.

The University is also home to a number of world-leading research centres including the Institute of Sound and Vibration Research, the Optoelectronics Research Centre, the Institute for Life Sciences, the Web Science Trust and Doctoral training Centre, the Centre for the Developmental Origins of Health and Disease, the Southampton Statistical Sciences Research Institute and is a partner of the National Oceanography Centre at the Southampton waterfront campus.