This programme was developed in consultation with the education, health and social care, and voluntary sectors, as well as individuals affected by Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), and is designed to facilitate the professional development of teachers and other related professionals who work, or wish to work, in this area.
Students explore the theories and practice underpinning ASD and can engage in associated experiential work. In line with the needs identified in the Northern Ireland Executive's Autism Strategy (2013-2020) and associated Action Plan, the course has been attuned to raising awareness, addressing issues specifically related to children and adults on the autism spectrum, and increasing knowledge and skills in relation to evidence-based interventions.
The aim is to enable the study of the theory and practice underpinning the specialist area in order to enhance understanding and ability to engage in research- and evidence-based practice. On completion of the degree, students will have:
In order to be awarded the MSc, students must successfully complete six taught modules (120 CATS points) and a dissertation (60 CATS points).
Two exit qualifications are available: students may exit with a Postgraduate Diploma by successfully completing 120 CATS points from taught pathway modules or an Postgraduate Certificate by successfully completing 60 CATS pointsfrom taught pathway modules.
Core Modules (all 20 CATS points):
This module will provide you with an understanding of differing perspectives that underpin quantitative and qualitative methodologies and is required preparation for your research dissertation.
We will focus on pedagogical methods and practices for inclusion that emanate from the scientific discipline of behaviour analysis. This includes a range of pedagogical methods, including intensive behaviour interventions, incidental teaching, contingency management, precision teaching, dealing with challenging behaviours, and integrating systems support. We will also introduce the practice of measurement of behaviour change and displaying and interpreting behavioural data.
You will be assisted to develop and extend your skills in understanding the needs of adults with ASD and their families. We will examine issues of identification, adult diagnosis, mental health, and transitions, as well as challenging behaviours, communication, and sensory issues, relationships, sexuality, self-advocacy, and neuro-diversity. We will consider the implications of an ASD diagnosis for the nuclear and extended family, for schools, homes and employment.
You will be assisted to develop and extend your skills in understanding the needs of children (aged 0-18) with ASD and their families. We will examine issues of definition, identification, diagnosis and assessment, and early intervention, as well as communication, and sensory issues across childhood and adolescence. We will also consider the implications of an ASD diagnosis for the nuclear and extended family, for teaching and learning in school and home-based programmes as well as transitions between school and home.
Two optional modules may be chosen from the Educational Studies (MEd) programme.
Graduates have found their Master’s degree to be beneficial in the workplace when advising colleagues, influencing policy makers and supporting pupils and students. Others progress to Doctoral level studies and research.
This programme offers teachers and educational professionals opportunities to learn across a range of areas within the broad field of education.
Education professionals in the twenty-first century are expected to have strong knowledge and skills in core areas as well as an ability to move flexibly in and out of a variety of specialist areas. This Educational Studies programme is designed to meet these diverse needs by offering a number of core modules as well as the opportunity to select optional modules from a wide range of topics including: educational leadership, inclusion and special educational needs.
The programme offers students an opportunity to familiarise themselves with current research on learning and teaching, assessment and curriculum design. In addition, students are encouraged to consider and reflect on the practical implications of theoretical perspectives and research findings.
The MEd in Educational Studies is open to teachers in primary-, secondary- and tertiary-level institutions as well as to professionals in other fields of education.
On completion of the modules students will be able to:
- As a prestigious Russell Group University, Queen’s is ranked 8th within the UK in relation to research intensity;
- Education research at Queen’s has been ranked 4th within the UK in relation to research intensity with 87% of the research undertaken within the School assessed as ‘internationally excellent or world leading’ (REF, 2014);
- We provide a professional development opportunity for teachers and other related professionals who wish to extend and renew their study of education on a wide front;
- The diversity of topics is particularly appreciated if you want to learn across a range of topics, rather than focusing on one specialist subject. Modules include: assessment, behaviour, curriculum, learning, reflective practice and many more. You may also study modules from our other Master’s programmes (if you meet the entrance requirements and receive approval);
- We understand the many demands on students’ time, so the content is delivered in a mixture of face-to-face and online formats and you can study one or more of our modules as a short course;
- If you have completed other Masters-level awards, eg PGCE, within the last 10 years you are eligible to transfer credit. The credit transfer application must be submitted at the same time as the online course application;
- You may also undertake individual course modules as short courses without completing a full degree.
- If you don’t want or need to study for the research dissertation, flexible exit awards (PG Diploma, PG Certificate) are available.
The MEd in Education Studies is awarded to students who successfully complete 120 CATS points from taught modules and 60 CATS points from a Master's dissertation.
Exit qualifications are available. Students may exit with a Postgraduate Diploma by successfully completing 120 CATS points from taught modules or a Postgraduate Certificate by successfully completing 60 CATS points from taught modules.
We've made it easy to study for a Master's module as a short course. If you would like to study for one of the modules in the MSc in Educational Studies as a short course, please contact the Postgraduate Secretary (tel: 028 9097 5923/ 5032, [email protected]) for advice.
List of Indicative Programme Modules
Modules* (20 CATS points) :
* These modules are subject to change.
There are no written examinations. Most modules are assessed by coursework. Online modules are assessed by a variety of methods, eg multiple choice exam and contributions to an online forum.
Learn to develop and manage inclusive provision for learners with autistic spectrum disorders on this flexible Advanced Educational Practice: Autism Masters course from Liverpool John Moores University.
•Study part time over three years on a course designed to support effective practice in the school
•Develop your professional practice through an inquiry based approach
•Enjoy flexible course delivery and fit studying around your work commitments
•Follow a curriculum closely linked to your professional practice needs
We recognise that our students are busy professionals and have taken this into account in the design of our programmes and assessments. Study on this programme is on a part time basis which allows you to integrate your learning with your full time professional role.
The course is delivered around school/college term times, with 20 credits being studied per term for the first two years.
During your first year you will study three compulsory (core) modules specialising in key teaching and learning themes. Your second year will involve selection of two optional modules from an identified suite, and the core module in Researching Professional Practice. Your final year will involve 60 credits of research-based study through completion of the Dissertation or Professional Enquiry modules. University-based study includes taught sessions scheduled late afternoon (4pm to 7pm) and occasional conference style days scheduled on Saturdays.
A blended learning approach ensures you can usually study at a time to suit you and all modules are supported by online study resources with additional guidance available through face-to-face or virtual tutorials.
To keep on top of your study, you should be prepared to work between five and 10 hours per week (evenings and weekends). The practical applications of the course will involve the integration of study with your professional activity in school or college.
During your studies you will have access to LJMU learning resources including our libraries for independent study. You will be allocated a personal tutor to support your academic and professional development and will also receive guidance via email.
Taught sessions mostly take place at the IM Marsh campus, four miles outside Liverpool centre, although some sessions may take place in the city. The IM Marsh campus has independent study spaces with IT facilities, a library with relevant stock and study spaces, access to student welfare and support, a gym and other sports facilities, a cafeteria and shop. The campus library, open 8am to 11pm, houses the main collections linked to this course and you will also have access to the 24 hour, city centre Aldham Robarts and Avril Robarts libraries.
Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.
The Autistic Spectrum (core)
Investigates current research relating to the features of the Autistic Spectrum and explore its implications for practice.
Autistic Spectrum Disorder: from Theory to Practice (core)
Considers current research regarding the causal theories of Autistic Spectrum Disorder and develops deeper understanding of effective support techniques and interventions used nationally and internationally.
Autistic Spectrum Disorder in the Mainstream Context (core)
Develops critical professional practice in supporting learners with ASD through analysis of and engagement with current educational theory, research, policy and practice and its implications for your professional setting.
Researching Professional Practice (core)
Provides an introduction to a range of research methods applicable to educational contexts, with a focus on practitioner enquiry, and how to develop a research project proposal and plan.
Teaching Young People with Special Educational Needs (option)
Develops understanding of special educational needs and disability through engagement with current theory, research, policy and practice and their application in your professional setting.
Social, Emotional and Mental Health Difficulties (option)
Explores current educational theory, research and policy relating to SEMHD implications for professional settings.
Specific Learning Difficulties (option)
Investigates current educational theory, research and policy relating to ADHD, Dyslexia and Dyspraxia and the implications for professional practice.
Identifying Dyslexia (option)
Develops knowledge and understanding of the characteristics, complex nature and issues related to the identification of dyslexia
Teac hing Learners with Dyslexia (option)
Investigates recent research relating to the teaching of learners with dyslexia and the implications for critical professional practice.
Involves the development and implementation of a major research project relevant to your subject area, with the support of an experienced academic tutor.
Professional Inquiry (option)
Involves the development and implementation of several linked, practice-based research projects relevant to professional practice in your subject area with the support of an experienced academic tutor.
Further guidance on modules The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers. Please email [email protected] if you require further guidance or clarification
University of South Wales' MA SEN/ALN (Autism) course is unique in Wales, and is for professionals working in the field of education, health, social care and the third sector who have contact with children or adults on the autism spectrum. The course is designed for those who wish to become an advanced practitioner in autism by acquiring a relevant qualification. As the only practice-based study of autism in the region, our course draws a wide range of students from south Wales and the west of England, as well as many international students.
The MA SEN/ALN (Autism) course is also of relevance to newly qualified practitioners who are interested in gaining a specialism in autism, and to those coming from a personal perspective on autism who would like to deepen their knowledge and find out more about current research and relevant theoretical ideas.
The autism course explores theory, policy and practice in relation to all aspects of autism as it is currently understood within different contexts. Modular content is designed to provide the opportunity to tailor your postgraduate degree to meet your individual professional or personal needs.
There are two specified modules focused on autism:
Autism: Contexts and Concepts
This module examines the development of current theories of autism and explores the implications of these for autistic individuals, families and practitioners. It is designed to deepen your knowledge and understanding of the sensory perceptual differences of autism and consider the ways in which these may give rise to a different way of being in the world.
Managing and Supporting Autism
This module critically examines national and international developments in policy and practice in relation to autism education and support within a variety of settings and contexts. It will enable you to evaluate the continuum of provision for people with autism in the light of theories of learning and with reference to important models of disability.
In addition to these two modules, you are able to select two or three additional modules from the Professional Learning Programme, for example:
Child and Adolescent Mental Health
This module focuses on the causation, presentation and implications of mental health difficulties in children and young people.
SEN: Contexts and Concepts
This module examines practice in SEN/ALN, learning disabilities and inclusive education and critically reflects on the tension between identification of need and the philosophy of inclusion
Leading and Managing SEN/ALN
This module is designed to provide students with a better understanding of theory and practice in relation to the role of SENCo/ALNCo and so respond to the changing landscape of SEN/ALN.
In common with all of the Professional Learning programmes, you must take the core module Research Methodology if you are studying the full Masters course.
A full range of the modules is available from the course leader, Dr Carmel Conn.
Awards are available at Postgraduate Certificate level (after completion of two taught modules); Postgraduate Diploma level (after completion of four taught modules) and the full MA (on completion of a dissertation).
Each module is taught during weekly on campus sessions over 10 week terms. Learning takes place in teacher and student-led seminars, group discussions, individual tutorials and through active learning tasks. Content is delivered in engaging and interactive ways, with clear direction and support provided for critical reading and academic-level writing. Teaching usually takes place in the evenings and sessions are delivered by the course leader together with guest speakers. For the autism modules, guest speakers include people with autism, as well as senior practitioners in health and education.
Each module is assessed by an assignment, which may take the form of a 5,000 word written assignment or an alternative practical assessment task. To complete the full Masters award, you will need to complete a 15000 word dissertation which is based on a topic of your choice. You will be supported by a tutor during the assignment writing process via individual tutorials. If you are not in professional practice, but would like to gain experience of working professionally in relation to autism education and support, help with setting up an internship can be provided.
If you are not in professional practice, but would like to gain experience of working professionally in relation to autism education and support, help with setting up an internship can be provided.
We are able to arrange to consult and use some of the resources available at the Dyscovery Centre such as standardised assessment tools.
Most students who study part-time, work in this specific field of work. Our full-time students quickly find work locally within education or the care sector, which offers them opportunities to apply theory to practice. A Masters degree in Autism is a major boost to a career. Whatever your profession, experience has shown us that success on the course leads to enhanced employment prospects. Parents of children diagnosed with an ASD feel empowered both from their success and the increased insight gained.
A number of students have gone on to present at national and international conferences on an aspect of the autism spectrum. Other students have secured promotion and or employment in organisations that specifically support or educate individuals on the spectrum.