Education MA

 
  

Fact file

Qualification
MA Education
Duration
1 year full-time including dissertation, 2 years part-time or via summer school plus dissertation
Entry requirements
2:2 (or international equivalent).
Other requirements
Applicants should have one year of full-time work or volunteer experience in an educational setting; a teaching qualification that includes a substantial placement-based component (eg. PGCE) will be considered acceptable experience
IELTS
6.5 (no less than 6.0 in any element)

If these grades are not met, English preparatory courses are available
Start date
September, January or July
Campus
Jubilee Campus
School/department
Tuition fees
You can find fee information on our fees table.
 

Overview

This is a unique modular course designed to reflect the needs of individuals or organisational cohorts, and deepen and refine your capacity for critical reflection on your practice.
Read full overview

The overall purpose of the MA Education is to deepen and refine your capacity for critical reflection on your practice as well as on the mental models which inform your work. Systematic practitioner inquiry is therefore an organising principle that underpins all modules on the programme, and you will be encouraged to identify issues that are significant to your professional practice.

While each module has its own unique focus, all are concerned with investigating contemporary educational issues in the light of historical, political and social contexts, appropriate literature and the shared experience of course members.

A hallmark of the MA Education is its commitment to equity and diversity, and its flexibility to meet the needs of individuals and organisations. Flexibility is evident in terms of offering you a range of:

  • specialist module options to create a personally and professionally meaningful qualification
  • modes of delivery to take account of individual needs and professional contexts
  • exit points en-route to a full masters programme
The MA course provided me with the unique opportunity to research my own practice and develop a greater understanding of the issues facing schools today. This further underpinned my teaching philosophy and has been fundamental in leading to further career progression; now as a Head of Department I am able to implement many of the forward thinking ideas discussed in such a developmental setting. In all aspects of my studies at The University of Nottingham it has been the relationship between the staff and their students which make it such a rewarding and highly enjoyable place to enter the teaching profession.
 

Tom Kitson, PGCE Geography, progressing to MA Education

Course start dates

Full-time: September
Part-time: September (for all students) or January (for home/EU students only) or July through Summer School (for all students)
Cohort: Start date negotiable

Tutors

The staff listed below are module convenors for the 'Education' modules. They are joined by a much larger team of other tutors teaching on elective modules.

 

Course details

The taught element of this course can be completed over one year full-time including dissertation, or two years part-time plus an eight-month dissertation period.

It is available to individuals and also cohorts from single schools or consortiums.

The course comprises modules totalling 120 credits, plus a 60-credit dissertation. There are also Postgraduate Diploma and Postgraduate Certificate exit points.

There are currently two core modules and an extensive selection of elective modules which can be taken from a range of MA programmes in the School of Education. All modules are 30-credits, unless otherwise stated.

Full-time students will be required to choose two modules per semester, while part-time students will choose one per semester. You can view an example timetable but please note this is subject to change.

Please note: Modules available in Summer School may only be offered on alternate years.

Assessment

Each 30-credit module is assessed by a written assignment of 6,000 words (or equivalent). To complete the masters programme successfully, a pass of 50 must be achieved on each assignment.

The dissertation is an original piece of work completed under individual supervision and should be 12,000-15,000 words related to one of the selected modules on an approved topic.

Individual applicants

The Education MA offers a flexible approach to planning your study so there are different modes of study available to you. Modules are taught in a variety of ways to ensure access to the curriculum. These may include the following:

View more information about our MA Eduation for individuals.

Cohort applicants

The School of Education welcomes approaches from educational organisations looking for a bespoke programme for their own staff, perhaps in collaboration with other local organisations (eg. partner schools, feeder schools, special schools, PRU, FE colleges, integrated services) to create or develop a local network of educators learning together.

Staff from the School of Education will deliver the modules on your own premises or in a local community setting, usually for a group of 12 or more, and sessions will be scheduled by negotiation with group members. These may take place in any of the following formats or a combination of all three:

  • During twilight sessions after school
  • On inset days
  • Weekend or holiday day

View more information about our MA Eduation for cohorts.

Applying

To ensure your application is considered in time, please note the following deadlines apply:

Important dates
Mode of studyStart dateApplication deadline

Part-time

HEU students

25 January 2017 6 January 2017

Part-time, Summer School

All students

24 July 2017 1 July 2017

Full-time and part-time

HEU students

25 Setember 2017 4 September 2017

Full-time

International Students

25 September 2017 14 August 2017

Part-time

HEU students

25 January 2018 4 January 2018

Part-time, Summer School

All students

 July 2018 - to be confirmed 1 July 2018 - to be confirmed 

Nottingham graduates

If you are a University of Nottingham PGCE graduate and started your course between September 2010 and September 2013, you will have received an automatic offer for the MA Education course and so will not need to submit a new application to us. You will need to contact our Admissions Office to accept your offer and to confirm the date you wish to start your MA. Whilst on the PGCE the automatic offer you were given was valid for five years, and so if you are out of this time frame, you will need to follow through with the online application process.

If you have previously studied the PGCEi course with The University of Nottingham, then you will not have received an automatic offer and so will need to submit a new application to us for consideration.

As a University of Nottingham graduate, you will not have to pay for your application.

Recognition of Other Learning (ROL)

If you have prior learning or experience at an appropriate level, you may apply on entry for exemption for credit requirements of the course. Please visit our ROL pages for further information.

 
 

Modules

The MA Education has two core modules - Practice-Based Inquiry (30 credits) and the Dissertation (60 credits).

The remainder of the 90 credits come from elective modules grouped in subject areas.

Core

Practice-Based Inquiry (30 credits)

The content will involve students in active critical consideration of participating in and leadership of practiitioner inquiry in relation to professional context mapping and workplace learning.

These processes will be achieved through: conceptualising different kinds of practitioner inquiry relevant to work-based understanding and development (purposes, processes, contexts, dilemmas, outcomes); examining a range of approaches to educational inquiry, with an emphasis on action research; developing an inquiry into your professional context.

Mode of teaching: Evening/daytime sessions in the autumn and spring semesters. Also block study in Summer School.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have one year's relevant experience but this could include your PGCE year (teaching practice).

 
Dissertation (60 credits)

This involves the researching and writing of a substantive piece of scholarship within the field of the course.

You will choose a topic in consultation with your course leader and an appropriate supervisor. The topic will normally be based on interests and skills you have developed in the course of the modules already studied.

 

Elective

Subject area: Education

Changing Classrooms: Policy, Research and Practice

This module critically examines contemporary debates surrounding orthodoxies in curriculum, learning and assessment in schools, and how these relate to policy and practice.

In particular it considers the way different orthodoxies frame what children and young people learn in schools, how they learn and how assessment practices inform learning processes. The module will explore these orthodoxies in terms of their origins and purposes and it will consider alternative models from an international perspective.

The module starts by considering the history, politics and ideology of the curriculum as it currently exists. It then develops understanding through application of psychological, social and cultural theories of learning and assessment. These theorised views of schooling and classroom practices enable us to analyse and critique the wide-ranging policy and research discussions about curriculum, learning and assessment that are currently under way.

You will be engaged in considering how developments of, and alternatives to, current practices will impact learning and teaching in the future.

Mode of teaching: Evening sessions in the autumn semester or in Summer School on an annual rotating basis.

Experience required: You would normally be an education practitioner or have access to a classroom setting but this could include your PGCE year (teaching practice).

 
Schools, Society and Mental Well Being

This module focuses on the relationship between society, education and mental well-being.

The context of the early 21st century is exerting new pressures in the lives of young people and educators, via influences such as globalisation, economic austerity, rapidly developing technology and the evolution of new identities. Research indicates that in the UK and other countries, there is an increasing prevalence of mental-ill health amongst young people together with stress-related illness triggered by the demands of performativity in the experience of teaching staff. The central question that the module seeks to critically explore is the scope and role that educators can play in understanding and supporting mental well-being both within themselves and in their relationships with others.

The module is taught in an experiential and process-lead way, beginning with an audit of personal/professional experience. The prevalence of mental ill-health is traced and the impact of trauma is explored. You are then introduced to a theoretical /skills based model of helping and supporting before exploring a series of commonly presenting themes encountered in school settings.

The module concludes via a critical consideration of the opportunities and limitations of providing support in school settings as well as quality assurance procedures in the form of supervision and self-care of the educator.

Mode of teaching: Evening sessions in the autumn semester.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have two years' relevant experience.

 
Developmentally Appropriate Practice in Early Years

This module considers:

  • Policy, curriculum and pedagogies issues in Early Years education
  • International models of early years education
  • The EY curriculum and the role of child initiated learning and play
  • EY assessment
  • School 'readiness'

Mode of teaching: Spring semester or in Summer School.

Experience required: You would normally be an education practitioner or have access to a classroom setting but this could include your PGCE year (teaching practice).

 
Mentoring Beginning Teachers

The module content is designed to develop your mentoring practice in support of beginning teachers and to support your own professional and academic development as a mentor.

This is achieved through a series of taught sessions that are closely linked to your day to day practice as a mentor to beginning teachers, and which provide support to develop theoretically underpinned rationales for mentoring activity. In this way, you will develop your practical skills in mentoring beginning teachers and develop a theory of action for your mentoring practice.

Mode of teaching: Evening sessions in the autumn and spring semesters.

Experience required: You must be working as a mentor to beginning teachers or have negotiated agreed access to a mentor/mentee arrangement in a school or college.

 

Subject area: Educational Leadership and Management

Leading Learning

The module will address the essential features of effective learning (as relevant to the participants' sector by examining: the process of learning; supporting learning (for example through adults, peers and technology) both within and beyond the educational organisation; an overview of approaches to improvement and raising achievement in educational organisations; monitoring and evaluation of learning: the use of data, target-setting, monitoring.

Mode of teaching: Morning and afternoon sessions in the autumn semester. Also block study in Summer School.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have two years' relevant experience.

 
Issues in Educational Leadership

This module is designed to meet the varying needs of the candidates. Such needs may have been identified prior to joining the course, through the process of self and organisational analysis, or through ongoing reflection on individual and organisational need throughout the course.

Mode of teaching: Morning and afternoon sessions in the autumn semester. Also block study in Summer School.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have two years' relevant experience.

 
Effective Leadership and Change in Education

This module will address the nature and practice of leadership in education. It will look at six themes:

  • concepts of leadership
  • change
  • leadership qualities, behaviours and competencies
  • power and authority
  • organisational cultures and distributed leadership
  • professional development

Mode of teaching: Morning and afternoon sessions in the autumn semester. Also block study in Summer School.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have two years' relevant experience.

 

Subject area: Learning, Technology and Education

Introduction to the Learning Sciences

The module covers:

  • associative models of learning
  • cognitive models of learning
  • constructivist models of learning
  • cultural, situated and connectionist models of learning
  • multimedia: the encoding and production of representations
  • intelligent tutoring: theories and implementations of artificial intelligence
  • variation in learners and learning
  • assessment and its electronic mediation

Mode of teaching: Evening sessions in the autumn and spring semesters.

Experience required: You would normally be an education practitioner and have two years' relevant experience.

 
The Social Contexts of Educational Technology

This module provides an introduction to the interpersonal and societal contexts within whicheducational innovation with learning technology occurs.

In particular it positions you to understand the institutional dimension of creating and sustaining learning technology innovation. It addresses theories of effective interpersonal learning interactions and the relevance of learning technology to their mediation.

Mode of teaching: Evening sessions in the autumn and spring semesters.

Experience required: You would normally be an education practitioner and have two years' relevant experience.

 

Subject area: Special Needs

Relationships and Behaviour

This module considers the following key areas:

  • Experiential learning and its relationship to reflective practice and reflexivity: exploration via a learning journal genre
  • World views and models of human behaviour
  • Theoretical perspectives on behaviour: behaviourist, humanistic and postmodern approaches
  • Social and emotional aspects of behaviour: mental well-being, shame, self-esteem
  • Punitive and restorative justice - responding to bullying and challenging behaviour, conflict resolution and peer mediation
  • The intensity/functionality of behaviour - escalation/de-escalation, communication and crisis intervention
  • Controversial issues: eg restraint, exclusion from school, sex and relationship education
  • Supporting students with ADHD
  • Workforce issues: self-care, partnership working

Mode of teaching: In each semester you can take one module if studying part-time and two if studying full-time. Evening sessions and also block study in Summer School. The modules are supplemented by an induction day and a study weekend in January each year.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have two years' relevant experience.

 
Communication and Literacy

This module considers the following key areas:

  • Typical and atypical development of communication
  • Typical and atypical development of literacy/learning including specific learning difficulties/dyslexia
  • Communication and literacy/learning assessments and interventions
  • Understanding autism and Autistic Spectrum Disorder
  • Communication and literacy/learning for children with learning disabilities including Autism, Downs Syndrome and Dyslexia
  • Effective teaching and learning environments

Mode of teaching: In each semester you can take one module if studying part-time and two if studying full-time. Evening sessions and also block study in Summer School. The modules are supplemented by an induction day and a study weekend in January each year.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have two years' relevant experience.

 
Researching Special and Inclusive Education

This module considers the following key areas:

  • Research purposes and paradigms
  • Epistemological influences on research design and practice
  • The reflective research practitioner
  • Participatory approaches to research
  • Criticality in reading, writing and reviewing the literature
  • Advantages and disadvantages of different methodological approaches to researching special and inclusive education
  • Planning and designing research projects
  • Ethical codes of practice and their importance in researching special and inclusive education
  • Applying research skills

Mode of teaching: In each semester you can take one module if studying part-time and two if studying full-time. Evening sessions and also block study in Summer School. The modules are supplemented by an induction day and a study weekend in January each year.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have two years' relevant experience.

 
Debating Special and Inclusive Education

This module will explore key issues concerning the field of special and inclusive education:

  • Definitions of special needs and inclusion
  • Global perspectives on diversity and access to equality of educational opportunities
  • Understanding theoretical approaches to special needs/inclusion and models of disability
  • Understanding prevalence of need and issues concerning classification and assessment
  • Exploring the impact of policy on practice and equality of opportunity
  • Examining the evidence on effectiveness of different types of educational settings eg mainstream, resource base and special provision
  • Pedagogy and creativity
  • Balancing equity and choice through collaborative and ethical problem solving

Mode of teaching: In each semester you can take one module if studying part-time and two if studying full-time. Evening sessions and also block study in Summer School. The modules are supplemented by an induction day and a study weekend in January each year.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have two years' relevant experience.

 

Subject area: Creativity, Arts, Literacies and Learning

Literacies and Learning in and out of School

This module covers the following:

  • Theories and definitions of literacy
  • School literacy - histories and debates
  • Children's literature and media
  • Community and lifelong literacies
  • Multimodality, multimedia and new literacies

Mode of teaching: Evening sessions in the autumn and spring semesters.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have experience of working as teachers in schools, or as educators in less formal arts or community-based settings, for example, in arts organisations, community literacy projects, in the production and distribution of texts in traditional and new media or in arts-based therapies.

 
Creativity, Places and Spaces

The module will cover the following:

  • Theories of creativity
  • Creativity and the arts
  • Language, linguistics and creativity
  • Place based learning
  • Creative pedagogies

Mode of teaching: Evening sessions in the autumn and spring semesters.

Experience required: We would normally expect you to have experience of working as teachers in schools, or as educators in less formal arts or community-based settings, for example, in arts organisations, community literacy projects, in the production and distribution of texts in traditional and new media or in arts-based therapies.

 

Options

Summer School

Summer School takes place annually over a two-week period commencing the last week in July. Summer School offers the opportunity to study one or two 30-credit modules in intensive teaching blocks, with continued academic support available during the subsequent period of self-guided study. Summer School modules can be combined with modules provided during other semesters. It is possible to study four modules over two Summer School periods.

MA Education (Flexible)

You are allowed to take one module from the MA Education (Flexible) as one of your four taught modules.

The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. This list is an example of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.

 
 

Funding

Funding information is available on the school website. Funding information can also be found on the Graduate School website.

International and EU students

The University of Nottingham offers a range of masters scholarships for international and EU students from a wide variety of countries and areas of study.

Applicants must receive an offer of study before applying for our scholarships. Applications for 2017 entry scholarships will open in late 2016. Please note the closing dates of any scholarships you are interested in and make sure you submit your masters course application in good time so that you have the opportunity to apply for them.

The International Office also provides information and advice for international and EU students on financing your degree, living costs, external sources of funding and working during your studies.

Find out more on our scholarships, fees and finance webpages for international applicants.

 
 

Careers

Career destinations for our graduates include counsellors, education advisers, language tutors, primary and secondary school teachers and vocational and industrial trainers and instructors. A number of our graduates are already in employment while undertaking part-time study and study for professional development within their chosen career.

Average starting salary and career progression

In 2015, 91% of postgraduates in the School of Education who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation.*

* Known destinations of full-time home higher degree postgraduates 2014/15.

Career prospects and employability

The acquisition of a masters degree demonstrates a high level of knowledge in a specific field. Whether you are using it to enhance your employability, as preparation for further academic research or as a means of vocational training, you may benefit from careers advice as to how you can use your new found skills to their full potential.

Our Careers and Employability Service will help you do this, working with you to explore your options and inviting you to attend recruitment events where you can meet potential employers, as well as suggesting further development opportunities, such as relevant work experience placements and skills workshops.

 
 
 
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School of Education
The University of Nottingham
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Nottingham
NG8 1BB
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