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Masters Degrees (Learning Difficulties)

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The.  Severe, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (SPMLD). Read more

The Severe, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (SPMLD)blended learning programme is one of the leading programmes in the field both nationally and internationally and it has has been developed for a range of professionals/practitioners who work with children and adults with learning difficulties in educational settings across the severe and profound range (SLD/ PMLD) including autism (where it overlaps with SLD/ PMLD). Most learners with SLD/ PMLD use specialist services such as special schools or colleges but some use inclusive services in nurseries, mainstream schools or community education. The programme will cover issues for staff who work in any of these services and has particular emphasis on working together to meet needs. The programme will aim to study systematically, critically and in-depth, aspects of educating children and adults with severe, profound and multiple learning difficulties. In particular, it will emphasis working together to meet needs.

Each module contains a 3 day campus study course and during the study weekends and the study days you will have the chance to be taught by academics from the University of Birmingham and other institutions as well as frontline practitioners, parents, individuals with learning difficulties, former students of our courses, and well-know training providers. For example Peter Imray and Dave HewettJean WareFlo Longhorn, Catherine Edwards, Liz Hodges and Neil Hall  (Find out more in the Learning and Teaching section).

Awards

To attempt to meet the needs of the wide range of people working with learners with SLD/ PMLD, the programme is available at more than one level. Level H (AdCert) is available for those with certificates and diplomas eg: HND, NVQ level 4/5, Foundation degree, whereas Level M (PGCert, PGDip, MEd) is available for those who have an honours degree (or equivalent). The lecture, seminars and online material contain the same material for everyone but participants studying at different levels are expected to respond to ideas and concepts differently. Further reading and critical analysis is required at M level.

Certificate (PGCert or AdCert) – modules 1 – 3 (Total of 60 credits);

PGDip – modules 1 – 3, plus Special Studies (40 credits), Special Studies (20 credits) (Total of 120 credits);

MEd - modules 1 – 3, plus Special Studies, then the module ‘Practitioner Inquiry in Education’ (preparation for dissertation) plus dissertation (Total of 180 credits).

Download information on all the postgraduate study programmes in the School of Education (PDF)

Course details

The Severe, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties blended learning programme is a combination of campus face-to-face sessions and online education. 

The programme aims to: 

  • enable participants to study systematically, critically and in-depth, aspects of educating children and adults with severe, profound and multiple learning difficulties that are relevant to their own practice 
  • provide the support needed for participants to analyse critically and improve their own theory and practice with children and adults with severe, profound and multple learning difficulties 
  • encourage participants to evaluate critically and develop their collaborative work across disciplines and agencies 
  • facilitate participants in developing rigorous evidence-based practice

As the SPMLD programme is designed for a range of practitioners, it is hoped that participants from different agencies or disciplines who work with the same learners will come on the course together (and thus improve their working together). If you are thinking of studying on the course, invite a colleague to study with you!

In the three videos below, students on the Severe, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties programme share their views on why they choose the course and what they enjoy about it.

Employability

This programme is for a range of professionals and practitioners who work with children and adults with learning difficulties in educational settings across the severe and profound range (SLD/ PMLD, including autism where is overlaps). Most learners with SLD/ PMLD use specialist services such as special schools or colleges but some use inclusive services in nurseries, mainstream schools or community education and the programme will cover issues for staff who work in any of these services and has particular emphasis on working together to meet needs.



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The Postgraduate Diploma in SEN Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) is one of a range of special educational needs courses that are offered by the University of South Wales at postgraduate level. Read more
The Postgraduate Diploma in SEN Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) is one of a range of special educational needs courses that are offered by the University of South Wales at postgraduate level.

This course is for you if you have at least two years experience of working with students with SpLD and are looking to gain a qualification to enable you to apply to the British Dyslexia Association (BDA) for either Approved Teacher Status (ATS or ATS HE/FE) or an Associate Membership of the BDA (AMBDA or AMBDA FE/HE).

The course may also be of interest to other approved professionals, such as speech and language or occupational therapists and educational psychologists.

The Postgraduate Diploma in SEN Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) is recognised by the British Dyslexia Association for the award of Associate Member of the British Dyslexia Association (AMBDA). It is also recognised by the Joint Council for Qualifications as the appropriate training for completing Access Arrangements in Secondary Schools.

Those who have obtained the PG Diploma in Spld (AMBDA) are eligible to assess and diagnose dyslexia.

See the website http://courses.southwales.ac.uk/courses/1280-postgraduate-diploma-sen-specific-learning-difficulties

What you study

To gain a Postgraduate Diploma SEN in SpLD you must pass four taught modules:

• Understanding Learning Difficulties and Disabilities which is taught on the campus or can be accessed via e-learning
• Specific Learning Difficulties
• Managing and Supporting Children and Young People with Specific Learning Difficulties
• Research Methodology

Both SpLD modules focus not only upon specific difficulties in literacy and numeracy, but address the wider spectrum of potentially associated conditions eg. Dyspraxia, Attention Deficit Disorder and Asperger’s Syndrome.

The course enables participants to gain knowledge of:

• The vast range of differences within the SpLD continuum
• Current research on the identification of learners experiencing problems with literacy and numeracy
• Assessing individual learning needs, using both standardised and non-standardised methods
• Planning programmes of work for individual pupils based on initial and on-going assessment
• The effects on learning, self esteem and behaviour of SpLD
• Monitoring the progress of learners who may show uneven or intermittent standards of achievement
• A variety of strategies and resources, including ICT and technical aids, for assisting pupil organisation, drafting and presentation of work
• The monitoring, evaluation and auditing responsibilities within school or service, in respect of the quality of provision for pupils with SpLD.

Learning and teaching methods

Students undertake two modules in year one, and two modules in year two. Both SpLD modules are taught on Monday evenings for three hours on campus over a period of 12 consecutive weeks.

Assessment methods

The first module is assessed on the basis of a written assignment of 5,000 words (or equivalent).

The second module is assessed in two ways:
- For students seeking a professional award, the successful completion of 30 hours of teaching experience and assessment of relevant files (equivalent to 5,000 words)

- For other participants, one 5,000 word assignment, or the equivalent

Employment Prospects

Most students proceed to the MA dissertation, in order to achieve the award of MA SEN.

Following successful completion of the course, some students have gained posts as school and college SENCOs, specialist tutors in SPLD services, set up their own SpLD consultancies, or become LEA Advisors. Others have published books and papers on the subject and gained doctorate awards.

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The course begins with a discussion about how the term ‘inclusion’ can be interpreted. You will then explore policies and philosophies of inclusion in both special educational needs and special provision, as well as to theories of social justice and equality in education. Read more

The course begins with a discussion about how the term ‘inclusion’ can be interpreted. You will then explore policies and philosophies of inclusion in both special educational needs and special provision, as well as to theories of social justice and equality in education. This course is for practitioners working in a range of settings, from early years to higher education. It is aimed at qualified teachers, teaching assistants and SENCOs, as well as disability advisers and those in student support settings. The key focus is dyslexia, although the curriculum will also touch on disorders such as autism, ADHD and dyspraxia.Learning is tailored to students who are also in employment, and is delivered by staff who understand the needs of part-time learners. Our experienced teaching staff have specialisms and are research-active, which means your learning will be underpinned by the latest research and analysis. There is a great emphasis on critical thinking and you will be encouraged to question and think independently in order to come up with solutions to support students with specific learning difficulties. You will be encouraged to bring your own professional experiences to discussions, to enrich the learning experience for all students. We are currently working with the British Dyslexia Association towards AMBDA accreditation for this course.

Modules

The programme comprises two modules that will enhance the knowledge and skills of practitioners in meeting the needs of learners with specific learning difficulties (SpLD):

  • Identifying and Supporting Learners with SpLD (this includes the identification of SpLD, theories of causation, the impact of SpLD on the acquisition of literacy skills, the emotional wellbeing and resilience of learners with SpLD, an exploration of SpLD within the new SEN Framework, and consideration of conditions such as dyslexia, dyspraxia, ADHD, autism and SLCN).
  • SpLD Intervention and Teaching (this includes inclusive pedagogy for learners in mainstream classes, strategies and interventions for personalised provision, learner assessment skills, and one-to-one teaching practice with a learner with SpLD in an educational setting).

Study style

Assessment is 100% through coursework. This part-time course is not available to international students.

If British Dyslexia Association, AMBDA accreditation is achieved for this course, the assessment will also include an element of observed specialist teaching.

Key focus on specific learning difficulties

Develop knowledge of specific learning difficulties with a focus on dyslexia.

Developed for students who are employed

This course is moulded to meet the needs of students who are working whilst studying.

Experienced, research-active teaching staff

The curriculum is delivered by experienced teaching staff with specialisms and who are research-active. This means your learning will be underpinned by the latest research and analysis.



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The Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia) course is designed for mainstream teachers or those working in an educational setting (including practitioners with a particular responsibility for supporting children, young people and adults with dyslexia) who wish to deepen their understanding of dyslexia and link this learning to the School Improvement Plan. Read more

The Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia) course is designed for mainstream teachers or those working in an educational setting (including practitioners with a particular responsibility for supporting children, young people and adults with dyslexia) who wish to deepen their understanding of dyslexia and link this learning to the School Improvement Plan.

A flexible framework combines academic study with work-based action learning and action research, where your day-to-day professional activity informs your development through reflection and peer discussion.

The PGCert is a stand-alone qualification and counts as one-third of a masters degree. 

The course is accredited by the British Dyslexia Association (BDA) and qualifies students to apply for Approved Teacher Status (ATS) or Approved Professional Status (APS) as long as they have completed two years (or equivalent) as a teacher or educational professional by the end of the course.

The programme is arranged to fit in with your working patterns and usually include Saturday sessions.

Areas of study

This course will focus on the following areas of study:

  • developing knowledge of the theoretical basis of contemporary approaches to dyslexia
  • the identification, assessment and practical support for learners with dyslexia
  • creating and delivering specialist intervention programmes and developing dyslexia friendly environments.
  • the application of learning to practice and evaluation of impact on yourself, your learners or others affected by your study.

This will enable you, as a practitioner, to:

  • extend and enhance your current practice
  • gain knowledge of current thinking in the understanding of dyslexia
  • develop frameworks for understanding the range of issues surrounding working with learners with dyslexia
  • increase your confidence and effectiveness in supporting learners with dyslexia
  • learn how to implement change in a range of policy contexts.

Course structure 

This postgraduate certificate is a one-year part-time programme comprising three 20-credit modules.

Module 1 focuses on developing criticality in thinking and approaches to learning in the context of dyslexia.

Module 2 provides students with an understanding of how dyslexia is identified and of effective pedagogy for learners with dyslexia in the context of inclusive practice. Students consider the practical application of this learning to their own context and are expected to deliver 10 hours specialist teaching 1:1 with a learner with dyslexia.

Module 3 embeds and develops specialist knowledge, skills and practice while considering the wider issues and debates around inclusion of learners with dyslexia. Teachers will develop a further teaching programme and teach a series of 10 lessons to an individual learner or two learners who are part of a small group.

Students will be expected to deliver 20 hours of evaluated specialist teaching. 

The Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia) PGCert is based at our Falmer campus. It can also be offered off site to your school or organisation, or delivered as a bespoke programme for a cluster of schools. 

Careers and employability

Our PGCerts are designed to support your career progression, increase your subject knowledge and help you to make a direct difference to your school and students.

Graduates of the course are well placed to take on subject development and leadership positions.



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We are a key provider in this field with over 20 years experience. These are nationally recognised qualifications designed for teachers of children and young adults who are experiencing specific learning difficulties in literacy. Read more
We are a key provider in this field with over 20 years experience.

These are nationally recognised qualifications designed for teachers of children and young adults who are experiencing specific learning difficulties in literacy. They are accredited by the British Dyslexia Association* at Approved Teacher Status (ATS) level or Approved Practitioner Status (APS) in year 1 and Associate Member of the British Dyslexia Association (AMBDA) in year 2. Exit awards are available at the end of year 1 (PG Cert SpLD) and year 2 (PG Dip SpLD) for those not wishing to take the full master’s degree.

Courses are principally designed to enable classroom practitioners gain a high level of knowledge and skill so that they can expertly meet the needs of learners with specific learning difficulties (SpLDs).

There is a supervised teaching practice consisting of 20 hours one-to-one teaching in year 1 and a further 10 hours in year 2 in order to meet BDA requirements. There is an additional, mandatory fee of £325 per study year for this which covers the observation and assessment of two one hour lessons, two individual tutorials with AMBDA tutors, and support with report writing and lesson planning via feedback on drafts.

Features and benefits of the course

-The Postgraduate Certificate leads to Approved Teacher Status (ATS) or Approved Practitioner Status (APS) for those without QTS of the British Dyslexia Association and the Postgraduate Diploma leads to AMBDA (Associate Membership of the British Dyslexia Association).
-Those who successfully complete the Postgraduate Diploma are eligible to apply for a Patoss Assessment Practising Certificate or BDA Assessment Practising Certificate.
http://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk/quality-mark-and-accreditation/professional-membership-accreditation.html
-Our Programme is led by highly qualified tutors with specialist experience who have close links to our Centre for Inclusive Education and Disability Studies. The Programme Leader has co-authored the two core texts on dyslexia which have been adopted by several universities and dyslexia providers, both nationally and internationally.

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This leading programme in the field of dyslexia prepares teachers to critically evaluate and develop evidence-based practice to become specialist teachers and assessors of learners with literacy difficulties. Read more

This leading programme in the field of dyslexia prepares teachers to critically evaluate and develop evidence-based practice to become specialist teachers and assessors of learners with literacy difficulties. This programme is recognised by the British Dyslexia Association for Approved Teacher Status (ATS) and Associate Member of the BDA (AMBDA).

About this degree

Students will gain an understanding of how learners typically develop literacy skills and how it might go wrong; how literacy difficulties can be identified and how to develop an individualised support programme. As part of this programme students will administer standardised tests (in their own educational setting) and teach (in similar settings) learners with literacy difficulties.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of four core modules (150 credits) and a research report (30 credits).

Core modules

All modules are core to this qualification

  • Assessment of SpLD (dyslexia)
  • Evidence-based Practice SpLD (dyslexia)
  • Research Design and Methodology
  • Understanding SpLD (dyslexia)
  • Research report

Optional modules

There are no optional modules for this programme.

Research project/report

All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a research report of 6,000 to 7,000 words.

Teaching and learning

This programme is delivered via face-to-face daytime and some evening sessions at UCL Institute of Education. It is assessed by coursework assignments and recordings of administering assessments and teaching pupils with literacy difficulties, plus a research report of 6,000 to 7,000 words. Modules 1-3 are taken in the first year on Wednesdays day time. RDM and report in Year 2. RDM module is on Tuesday evenings in the autumn term.

Fieldwork

Students will be required to work with children and young people up to the age of 18 years to demonstrate the core competencies of the programme.

Placement

Students must find have access to pupils - we do not find placements for students.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Specific Learning Difficulties (Dyslexia) MA

Funding

Part-time students may apply for the UK Government Postgraduate Loan.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.

Careers

Graduates of this programme are currently working across a broad range of areas. Some are working as specialist teachers of children with SpLD (dyslexia), while others have jobs as specialist teacher assessors; many combine both. Graduates can also be found working as headteachers, special educational needs co-ordinators, local authority advisors and in research roles.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Literacy Consultant, London Borough of Camden
  • Manager of Language and Learning Team, London Borough of Merton Council
  • Primary School Special Educational Needs (SEN) Teacher, Primary School & Children's Centre, Edmonton
  • Special Educational Needs School Teacher, Milton Keynes
  • Specialist Teacher, Special Education Needs (SEN), London Borough of Tower Hamlets

Employability

Successful completion of the programme will allow students awarded the ATS to support learners with dyslexia (up to the age of 18 years), and with the AMBDA to undertake diagnostic assessments and support learners with dyslexia.

Careers data is taken from the ‘Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education’ survey undertaken by HESA looking at the destinations of UK and EU students in the 2013–2015 graduating cohorts six months after graduation.

Why study this degree at UCL?

This programme is taught by a range of leading researchers and professionals in the field of dyslexia. It uniquely offers a rigorous academic programme combined with professional practice qualifications fully recognised by the British Dyslexia Association and UCL Institute of Education, an internationally recognised university.

Critical engagement with current research and evidence-informed practice, supported by professionals and researchers, will enable the participant to reflect on their learning and enhance workplace practice.

Professional practice is supported by a team of AMBDA specialists. It will provide the understanding, knowledge and skills required to teach children and young people with literacy difficulties.



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The inclusion and achievement of students with Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) within mainstream education is an important current focus. Read more

The inclusion and achievement of students with Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) within mainstream education is an important current focus. By acquiring specialist teaching and assessment skills, you’ll broaden your career opportunities within and beyond the school and college context.

The modules combine theory and practice. You’ll study through workshops, case studies and assignments, justifying your professional practice through research. Modules comprise taught sessions and assessed projects, and can be completed full-time in one year or part-time in up to five years.

COURSE STRUCTURE

You’ll develop your theoretical and practical knowledge of SpLD/dyslexia, and will learn specialist approaches to the identification, assessment and teaching of learners with specific learning difficulties.

MODULE STRUCTURE

The first module of the course enables you to assess a learner, compiling an individual profile based on your findings, and design/deliver an individualised programme of support. You’ll also explore methods and strategies to develop the inclusive practices which can support learners across the curriculum.

The second module will develop your ability to undertake full diagnostic assessments for dyslexia to inform programmes and appropriate support, such as Examination Access Arrangements.

A further module will allow you to develop an understanding of the difficulties faced by primary or secondary students with SpLD/dyslexia or dyscalculia when learning mathematics, and provide you with knowledge about how to support them.

If you already have specialist SpLD/dyslexia qualifications and wish to gain a PATOSS Assessment Practising Certificate, a further module can facilitate this.

For more information on careers, please view the Course Handbook: https://www.bathspa.ac.uk/media/bathspaacuk/course-handbooks/ife/PG-Specific-Learning-Difficulties-and-Dyslexia-handbook-2016-2017.pdf

TEACHING METHODS

Modules are taught through twilight lectures and workshops, usually a three hour session each week from 5-8pm.

Many sessions are led by the Course Leader, who is a specialist in the academic and practical aspects of SpLD/dyslexia. Others are delivered by visiting tutors with particular areas of expertise such as an educational psychologist or dyscalculia specialist

ASSESSMENT

Each module is coursework-assessed (7000-10,000 words per 30 credit module). The dissertation is 15,000–20,000 words and worth 60 credits.

CAREERS

The programme can serve as a stepping stone to becoming a Specialist SpLD/Dyslexia teacher and assessor working either in a school setting or independently. This is also helpful pathway for those working within SEN leadership and management roles such as SENCO in schools. It can also lead onto further PhD studies in SpLD/Dyslexia, education or similar fields.

Areas of career direction include: Specialist learning support and teaching possibilities, Advisory Teacher roles for Local Authorities, educational leadership and management, curriculum design and development, higher education research and teacher training.

For more information on careers, please go to your Course Handbook: https://www.bathspa.ac.uk/media/bathspaacuk/course-handbooks/ife/PG-Specific-Learning-Difficulties-and-Dyslexia-handbook-2016-2017.pdf



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All modules can be taken on weekday evenings (and occasional weekends), so that Part-Time students can fit this Master’s Degree around existing professional commitments. Read more
  • All modules can be taken on weekday evenings (and occasional weekends), so that Part-Time students can fit this Master’s Degree around existing professional commitments
  • Choose from a range of specialist modules in the area of Inclusion, SEN and Disability
  • Tailor the programme to your own needs and interests (one module from another MA programme in Early Childhood or Leadership and Management can be taken as part of this programme)
  • The programme allows you to specialise in particular areas to reflect your interests or professional role

Summary

The SEN, Disability and Inclusive Education programme enables students to investigate the education of children and young people with learning difficulties, disability, disadvantage or other additional needs. Our programme is founded upon a democratic commitment to forms of education which challenge exclusion and enable the participation, learning, development and empowerment of all.

Students studying on the programme will engage with aspects of theory, policy and practice relevant to international and local contexts. With its international profile, this programme brings together those who have significant professional experience working with children and young people with learning difficulties, disabilities, disadvantages or other additional needs, either directly in teaching, support or project work, or as policy-makers, advisory workers or managers.

The MA SEN, Disability and Inclusive Education draws on different disciplinary traditions and approaches to theory and practice within the field of Inclusion, SEN and Disability, but is underpinned by rights-based, justice-based and equalities-based principles and a rejection of deficit-based approaches to difference (including the medical model of disability). The specialist modules within the programme include some which have particular emphasis and grounding in social or critical or psychological perspectives as well as other modules which are more generic in their foundation. The compulsory final independent enquiry module – a 60 credit Dissertation - allows the opportunity for a range of research styles and approaches for critically enquiring into an identified question or issue or for developing practice through critical enquiry.

Students greatly benefit from engaging with the insights, experiences and perspectives of other programme members, from a diverse range of contexts and backgrounds. The combination of their own experiences, insights gained from others on the programme and the theoretical resources offered by learning within the modules, enables students to deepen their understanding of, and to be able to challenge exclusion in education and the barriers that hinder participation, learning, development and empowerment of children and young people with learning difficulties, disability, disadvantage or other additional needs.

The teaching provided on modules is informed by active research and scholarship in the field of Inclusion, SEN and Disability theory and practice. All lecturers leading modules on the programme have high level specialist qualifications, teaching and leadership experience in the field of Education and Inclusion.

This programme can be taken full-time over one year (for those who are not working or working very little) or can be taken part-time over 2 – 4 years.

Content

The programme rests on a critical approach to education in general, with an emphasis on inclusion, enablement, human rights and social justice in the education of those with learning difficulties, disabilities and disadvantage.

The specialist modules within the programme include some which have particular grounding in social or critical perspectives, whilst other modules are more generic in their approach. The compulsory final independent enquiry module – a 60 credit Dissertation - allows the opportunity for a range of styles and approaches for critically enquiring into an identified question or issue within Inclusion and SEND or for developing practice through a critical practitioner enquiry. 

All students complete a common module which takes a broad view of key perspectives and issues in Inclusion, SEN and Disability. Optional modules are available to students, some of which focus specifically on the education of pupils with particular learning difficulties or disability, and some of which focus on issues such as pedagogy, social and emotional development and behaviour.

Students may also have the opportunity, instead of taking a taught optional module, to take a (non-taught) Independent Study module to learn about a specific issue relevant to their interests or needs, which is not taught about in the programme. Most modules carry a 20 credit value apart from the Dissertation, so the full programme comprises six 20 credit modules plus the Dissertation.

It is possible for students to withdraw from the programme with an award short of the full MA (180 credits) if they wish. The Postgraduate Diploma is achieved with 120 credits and the Postgraduate Certificate is achieved with 60 credits.

Modules

Required modules (must be taken)

Compulsory module (must be passed)

Optional modules

Compulsory and Required modules

Compulsory and/or required modules may change when we review and update programmes. Above is a list of modules offered this academic year.

Optional modules

Optional modules, when offered as part of a programme, may vary from year to year and are subject to viability.

Career options

The Programme supports and enables those with significant professional experience to:

  • Develop their careers in education practice and leadership: teaching, advisory work, SEND coordination, inclusion management, support work
  • Move into a career in policy-making, implementation and development of Inclusion, developing the Inclusion and SEND workforce
  • Undertake a Doctorate and move into a career in research


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We are a key provider in the field of specific learning difficulties with over 20 years’ experience. Read more

We are a key provider in the field of specific learning difficulties with over 20 years’ experience.

The Postgraduate Certificate in Dyscalculia, which is new this year, is a nationally recognised qualification designed for teachers of children and adolescents who are experiencing specific learning difficulties in mathematics. It can be taken with or without BDA accreditation and gives 60 credits towards a PG Diploma in SpLD: Literacy and Numeracy or an MA SpLD. 

This course consists of two 30 credit units, one on nature, identification and assessment and the other on supporting learners with dyscalculia and other specific learning difficulties in mathematics. An additional (optional) 10 practice credits leads to a 'PG Certificate in Dyscalculia with Practice Credits' which is accredited by the British Dyslexia Association at Approved Teacher Status (ATS) Dyscalculia level or Approved Practitioner Status (APS) Dyscalculia.

The course is principally designed to enable classroom practitioners to gain a high level of knowledge and skill so that they can expertly meet the needs of learners with specific learning difficulties (SpLDs) in mathematics. 

There is a supervised teaching practice consisting of 20 hours one-to-one teaching for those wanting BDA accreditation, which forms part of a portfolio of practical tasks including an assessment report, an Individual Learning Plan and 20 lesson plans and evaluations. There is an additional fee of £325 for the practice credits which covers the observation and assessment of two one-hour lessons, two individual tutorials with AMBDA tutors, and support with report writing and lesson planning via feedback on drafts.



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This course focuses on difficulties in literacy acquisition, including dyslexia, among young people and investigates how potential barriers to learning can be ameliorated within educational contexts. Read more
This course focuses on difficulties in literacy acquisition, including dyslexia, among young people and investigates how potential barriers to learning can be ameliorated within educational contexts.

The course includes the elements related to assessment theory and practice required by the Joint Council for Qualifications (2014) in qualifications for specialist teachers who assess pupils and students and make recommendations for access arrangements and reasonable adjustments in relation to external examinations in schools.

This is an online version of the course. All the materials are available through the University’s website so you will be able to study the whole course at a distance. Support from course tutors is available through the website, by email or by telephone.

Visit the website: https://www.beds.ac.uk/howtoapply/courses/postgraduate/next-year/difficulties-literacy-development-and-dyslexia#entry

Course detail

• Study on a course designed for education professionals, which will help equip you to meet a diverse range of learning needs within your teaching environment, and to support your colleagues
• Explore course content highly relevant to mainstream and special school practitioners alike, focusing on issues related to literacy difficulties and dyslexia in schools, and how potential barriers to learning can be removed
• Develop your understanding of concepts, theories and approaches to literacy difficulties, including dyslexia, and inclusion in schools, and on your potential for influencing change
• Gain insight into the learning of dyslexic and other pupils/students who experience difficulties in literacy development/specific learning difficulties, and ways in which learning might be more effectively supported
• Benefit from a qualification that could lead you into more specialist roles in Education (such as SENCO) and/or further study (eg the National Award for SEN Co-ordinators), and may also be used as the basis for a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) claim into an MA Education course (Level 7).

Modules

• Understanding Difficulties in Literacy Development and Dyslexia
• Addressing Difficulties in Literacy Development and Dyslexia

Assessment

Your individual development is assessed via six diagnostic, formative and summative assessments.

The first assessment in Unit 1 requires reflection on understandings of literacy acquisition and application of understandings to students’ own contexts.

Assessment two focuses on critical reflection on theories of dyslexia, and assignment 3 to application of assessment theory to individual literacy learning difficulties and the design, development, implementation and evaluation of an individual learning plan linked to needs..

Assessments in Unit 2 relate to institutional level: analysis and reflection on current school/college policy on literacy and dyslexia; analysis of areas for improvement in institutional provision for literacy difficulties and dyslexia; and the design, development, implementation and critical evaluation of a small-scale practitioner research project focused on achieving the desired improvement.

Careers

This course includes the elements required by the Joint Council for Qualifications (2014) for specialist teachers to assess pupils and students and make recommendations for access arrangements and reasonable adjustments during external examinations.

For this reason, typically graduates of this course either continue working in their own institutions or else are promoted to positions of greater responsibility. Graduates may also wish to continue their postgraduate study through a Masters qualification such as MA Education (Special Educational Needs).

Funding

For information on available funding, please follow the link: https://www.beds.ac.uk/howtoapply/money/scholarships/pg

How to apply

For information on how to apply, please follow the link: https://www.beds.ac.uk/howtoapply/course/applicationform

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This programme, which is suitable for graduates working in educational settings, will equip you with an understanding of the critical debates and issues surrounding dyscalculia and mathematics learning difficulties. Read more
This programme, which is suitable for graduates working in educational settings, will equip you with an understanding of the critical debates and issues surrounding dyscalculia and mathematics learning difficulties. You will develop the ability to screen and plan a programme of intervention for learners with dyscalculia, as well as engaging in the completion of reports based on the screening and assessment of learners. You will be equipped with a clear understanding of a range of approaches to effective teaching and learning and gain an appreciation of the wider social and emotional aspects of dyscalculia and mathematics learning difficulties. The programme provides a combination of critical thinking, evaluation and practical action to ensure you can demonstrate highly effective practice and support for learners with dyscalculia.

What will I study?

The course comprises two modules, one studied per semester, which explore the critical debates and issues surrounding dyscalculia and mathematics learning difficulties.

You will gain a deep understanding of current research, appraise a range of teaching and learning approaches, and critically reflect upon the difficulties that learners with dyscalculia may have to overcome in order to achieve their full potential in mathematics.

Additionally, you will develop the ability to screen, assess, report and plan intervention programmes for learners with dyscalculia.

How will I study?

The programme will be delivered through a blended learning approach that consists of face-to-face sessions and supported online learning through the use of the University’s virtual learning environment (VLE).

You will be encouraged to share reflections using the discussion facilities provided within the virtual learning environment, enabling you to participate in discussions with a network of professionals and draw on this pool of experience and expertise.

You will be required to attend two workshops and actively participate in all sessions and tutorials including online activities. Face-to-face sessions take place at Solihull College Conference Centre.

How will I be assessed?

The programme is assessed through a variety of methods including case studies, pupil profiles, evaluated specialist teaching, observations of teaching, and holistic diagnostic reports.

Who will be teaching me?

You will be taught by tutors with a wide range of expertise in a variety of academic disciplines, including inclusion and special educational needs, dyscalculia, dyslexia, leadership and management, educational research and systematic enquiry.

All teaching observations will be carried out by tutors who hold Associate Membership of the British Dyslexia Association (AMBDA) status.

What are my career prospects?

The programme will equip you with the professional attributes, skills, knowledge, attitudes and confidence required to understand the needs of individuals with dyscalculia and provide highly effective specialist support to them.

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Learning disability nurses enable individuals to live their lives to their full potential within the social context they choose, through collaborative interventions across a variety of health and social care settings and by using specialist input, through person centred practice, underpinned by the concept of partnership working. Read more
Learning disability nurses enable individuals to live their lives to their full potential within the social context they choose, through collaborative interventions across a variety of health and social care settings and by using specialist input, through person centred practice, underpinned by the concept of partnership working.

This course teaches you to promote social inclusion, good mental and physical health and self-determination through developing your skills, knowledge and attributes. All learning is grounded in a strong evidence base of integrative health and social care modelling. Our placements are varied, offering you the chance to create a future career that will be rewarding both for your personal and professional advancement.

Modules

You will be taught separately from the three-year undergraduate students and will study the following:

Year 1

Improving quality, change management and leadership
Building practice skills for learning disability nursing
Applied physiology, growth and development
Contemporary issues in learning disability nursing

Year 2

Research in health and social care
Enhancing practice skills in learning disability nursing
Complexity in learning disabilities
Advanced communication

MSc pathway

You'll follow the same modules as outlined above for the PgDip, with the addition of a dissertation:

Dissertation
Assessment methods vary within each module, mapped against the professional standards as outlined by the NMC (2010) and assessed either through course work, and/or clinical placement assessments. Written assessments include essays, case study's, and critical reviews of evidence for example. Clinical practice assessments include achievements of identified competencies, a learning assessment portfolio, and problem based scenarios.

Teaching and learning

You'll be expected to work as an independent adult learner, working alongside academic staff to expand and extend your knowledge, skills and attitudes as a critical scholar in the field of Intellectual Disabilities.

You'll be allocated a personal tutor, a cohort leader, and a course director, plus clinical mentors, and link lecturers whilst on placement.

The course makes use of the virtual learning environment MOODLE, an interactive based system for accurate and rapid information sharing, so course materials are available whenever you need them. A range of learning styles are employed, including visits from service users and their carers, to ensure the course remains contemporary and applied to real life situations.

Placements

Every student will spend 50% of the course on placement. You'll have the opportunity to work in partnership with individuals with learning disabilities and their families using a health mentoring model. Alternatively you can work in partnership with community based organisations on projects where all parties increase their awareness, understanding and valuing of their roles, using strength based approaches.

The placement aim is to provide a broad range of experiences working with children and adults with learning disabilities in a variety of settings. This will enhance your knowledge and experience of the range of challenges people with a learning disability may face on a daily basis and what can be done to assist not only the individual but also their families.

You'll also gain insight into what is available to support workers and organisations providing services in the areas of physical and mental health, complex care needs, communication, behaviours of concern, sexuality, personal care and a range of other areas.

Professional links

The learning disability nursing programmes at LSBU have a long history of partnership working with agencies in the NHS and independent and voluntary sector. The Professional Lead for Mental Health and Learning Disabilities at the Department of Health England is a frequent guest speaker who inspires Learning Disability nurses to influence and innovate.

Learning disability nursing as a career

The course will enable you to develop a wide range of employability skills through the emphasis on a vocational approach to teaching which leads to a professional qualification leading to registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC).

There is an increasing body of research that shows the need for learning disability nurses as a specialist resource to address health inequalities experienced by people with learning disabilities. The course will give you the specialist knowledge and skills to work in a wide range of services, and the confidence to work collaboratively with people with learning disabilities, their families and carers, and other professionals and agencies.

Role and responsibilities

As a learning disabilities nurse you would work with people of all ages to give them the skills and confidence they need to live as independently as possible. You'd be working as part of a multi-disciplinary team and be responsible for co-ordinating care plans with other healthcare professionals, as well as monitoring progress. A learning disabilities nurse would be responsible for making an initial assessment of a patient's health and social care needs.

Day-to-day duties would be likely to include help and encouragement with tasks such as personal hygiene, dressing, using public transport, shopping, leisure interests, making and attending appointments, and finding a job. Learning disabilities nursing also involves campaigning on behalf of those with learning disabilities, supporting the agenda for equality and trying to improve healthcare services for those with learning difficulties.

Career progression

Successful graduates of the PgDip can top-up to MSc in one year and will be qualified to study a range of further specialist postgraduate pathways. With additional experience, advanced practice is available at Masters level with the potential to progress to doctorate studies. Once you are a registered nurse browse our online CPPD prospectus to find out what courses are on offer to help with your professional development.

LSBU Employability Services

LSBU is committed to supporting you develop your employability and succeed in getting a job after you have graduated. Your qualification will certainly help, but in a competitive market you also need to work on your employability, and on your career search. Our Employability Service will support you in developing your skills, finding a job, interview techniques, work experience or an internship, and will help you assess what you need to do to get the job you want at the end of your course. LSBU offers a comprehensive Employability Service, with a range of initiatives to complement your studies, including:

• Direct engagement from employers who come in to interview and talk to students
• Job Shop and on-campus recruitment agencies to help your job search
• Mentoring and work shadowing schemes.

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This programme, which is suitable for graduates working in educational settings, will enhance and develop your knowledge of a range of learning difficulties, enabling you to gain a deeper understanding of special education needs (SEN) and inclusion. Read more
This programme, which is suitable for graduates working in educational settings, will enhance and develop your knowledge of a range of learning difficulties, enabling you to gain a deeper understanding of special education needs (SEN) and inclusion. There will be opportunities to reflect upon the importance of early identification of need as you enhance your awareness of how to recognise the indicators of a range of special educational needs. These include dyslexia, autistic spectrum disorder (ASD) and social, emotional and mental health (SEMH) difficulties. Effective strategies to improve intervention will also be considered and related to your practice, underpinned by reflection upon a range of literature and legislation, as you gain an enhanced appreciation of how inspiring practice can support and augment the learning of those with special educational needs.

What will I study?

The course comprises two modules, one studied per semester, which explore the provision of inclusive education for those with special educational needs.

You will consider the dilemmas arising from everyday practice, examine UK policy as well as national and international legislation, and reflect upon the range of learning difficulties within your own setting.

How will I study?

The programme will be delivered through a blended learning approach that consists of one workshop per module and supported online learning through the use of the University’s virtual learning environment (VLE).

Additional sessions will be available via Collaborate, an academic virtual classroom, to enhance the online learning experience. Academic tutors will also offer guidance on the development of your practice-based research.

How will I be assessed?

The programme is assessed through two reflective portfolios. These will include practice-based assessment tasks and a critical reflection of 2,500 words.

Who will be teaching me?

You will be taught by highly qualified and experienced tutors with expertise in the field of special educational needs.

What are my career prospects?

The programme will equip you with the professional attributes, skills, knowledge, attitudes and confidence required to support individuals with a range of learning difficulties.

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The . Language, Literacies and Dyslexia. Read more

The Language, Literacies and Dyslexia programme, is aimed at teachers, language teachers, speech and language therapists and other professionals working with children, young people and students in further and higher education at pre-16 and FE/HE education levels who have difficulties with learning literacy skills.

This distance learning masters level programme is essential for practitioners seeking to become specialist practitioners, employable to assess and teach learners with dyslexia and literacy difficulties of school age or in further/higher educationin monolingual as well as bi/multilingual contexts. Successful completion of the Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) level of the course meets the British Dyslexia Association (BDA) criteria in practical assessments and allows students to apply for the BDA professional qualification. 

The University of Birmingham offers three awards at master's level. 

  • First year (Postgraduate Certificate - PGCert) 60 credits
  • Second year (Postgraduate Diploma - PGDip) 120 credits
  • Third year (Masters - MEd) 180 credits

Halfway through the first year of study you will be asked whether you wish to extend your registration to work towards a further award.

Download information on all the postgraduate study programmes in the School of Education (PDF)

Course details

The programme provides a broad and critical perspective of language literacies and literacy difficulties/dyslexia through sociocultural and cognitive research, as well as education policies. It embraces school and further educational demands of literacy skills, the demands of family and social literacy practices, and peer demands of new literacies, such as digital literacies. The programme establishes the fundamental relationship between language and literacy in typical and atypical development. Students study literacy difficulties/dyslexia in contexts of monolingual, multilingual (e.g. FL/SL/AL) and multimodal (e.g. digital literacies).

Studying at a distance means you can work from anywhere, such as in your home or workplace in the UK or overseas. All your studies will be in English and it is a requirement that you practice in an educational context of monolingual, additional English (EAL/ESL/EFL) or other languages. Reference would be made to contexts that are bi/multilingual and multimodal.

Specialist professional practice in dyslexia/specific learning difficulties

Successful completion of the Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) award, meets the specialist professional practice competencies in teaching learners with dyslexia/literacy difficulties at school and FE/HE levels of provision required by the British Dyslexia Association’s ATS/APS, ATS FE/HE accreditation.

Successful completion of the Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) award, meets the specialist professional practice competencies required by the Joint Qualifications Council UK, and the British Dyslexia Association’s AMBDA accreditation, in diagnostic assessment, and intervention/ specialist teaching with learners with literacy difficulties/ specific learning difficulties at school and FE/HE levels of provision. So, the PGDip award will allow practitioners to apply for the BDA’s accreditation (AMBDA, AMBDA FE/HE) depending on their professional qualification – please visit the BDA website http://www.bdadyslexia.org.uk for further information. 

For students who follow the AMBDA, AMBDA FE/HE routes, some of the programme and module requirements will be different for study and assessment to develop knowledge and practice in specialist assessment and teaching for learners with literacy needs and difficulties.

The Department of Disability Inclusion and Special Needs (DISN) in the School of Education, has a very strong profile in professional development, regionally, nationally and internationally. The tutors who run this programme have national and international profiles in the field of research and practice in language and literacy difficulties and dyslexia. The department also runs a number of other courses in special education which may interest you.

Learning and teaching

At the beginning of each year of study, there is an online induction module to the University of Birmingham programme. This module will give all the necessary information to induct students into the programme so that a residential visit is not required.

The method of learning involves online reading, literature searches, enquiry based learning through activities and discussion with fellow students in your tutor group, and your tutors. Learning is orientated to relating your study to your professional practice. 

Study activities include reading chapters and articles on research and practice, quizzes, online discussion of case studies, tutorials and lectures. Developing studying skills include online searches for research papers, policies and teaching materials, critical reading, problem-solving, and writing skills. There is personal online tutorial support through ‘reflective journaling’ and discussion with your tutor. Regular group monthly tutorials with your tutor group and tutor are held through online conferencing (simliar to Skype).

International students 

We recruit students to the programme from the UK, EU, USA and other countries. Study is through English and students can study literacy difficulties with learners who are learning through EFL or EAL. The programme covers all education phases: primary / secondary, and Further Education /Higher Education. Students are supported in tutor groups with other students who work in the same phase, (where possible in the same region/country) and with a tutor with specialist qualifications in dyslexia and professional experience with learners with dyslexia in the educational phase.



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This new programme will interest graduates who want to make a difference to the lives of a wide range of children in education. You will compare inclusive educational practices in Scotland, the UK and across the world. Read more

This new programme will interest graduates who want to make a difference to the lives of a wide range of children in education. You will compare inclusive educational practices in Scotland, the UK and across the world. You will study particular approaches to removing barriers to learning and including all children.

The programme has specific pathways for Postgraduate Diploma (visually impaired learners), Postgraduate Diploma (deaf learners) and Postgraduate Diploma (bilingual learners).

Programme structure

Compulsory courses

  • Inclusive Pedagogy
  • Sources of knowledge
  • Conceptualising research

Option courses

You will choose three option courses from this range:

  • Comparative approaches to inclusive and special education
  • Collaborative working in children’s services
  • Education for all
  • Teachers as agents of change
  • Foundations of international child protection
  • Issues and strategies for teaching and learning (VI)
  • Inclusion of pupils with visual impairment
  • Cerebral VI and profound and multiple learning difficulties
  • Audiology and audiometry
  • Language and communication (deaf children)
  • The developing bilingual learner
  • Specific learning difficulties: dyslexia
  • Assessing pupils with visual impairment
  • Bilingualism and other additional support needs
  • Promoting achievement and curriculum access to deaf / bilingual learners
  • Specific learning difficulties: co-occurring difficulties
  • Deaf Studies
  • an option course worth up to 40 credits from within the School or from elsewhere in the University (at SCQF level 11), subject to approval by the programme director

Dissertation (MSc)

  • Planning research
  • Research dissertation

Learning outcomes

The programme aims to:

  • develop and appropriately apply knowledge, skills and attitudes relevant to inclusive education and the contexts in which it takes place
  • reflect critically on the relationships between theory and practice and explore issues in the implementation of educational and social principles and ideals
  • engage with and where appropriate influence policy issues and the practice of professionals in relation to the delivery of inclusive education
  • develop extended skills in research and enquiry, including the use of literature, reviewing evidence, gathering, organising and evaluating data, responding to evidence and providing critical comment

Career opportunities

Suiting newly qualified teachers and experienced practitioners alike, this programme provides a qualification that can open doors to a new career in inclusive and special education, or an advanced role in the field.

It can also provide the foundations for a career in policy formation and development, as well as a broad range of highly transferable skills, such as communication and project management, which can be applied to roles in any field.



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