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Masters Degrees (Severe Learning Difficulties)

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The Severe, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties blended learning programme which is a combination of campus face-to-face sessions and online education. Read more
The Severe, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties blended learning programme which is a combination of campus face-to-face sessions and online education. 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 and well-know training providers such as Peter Imray and Dave Hewett (Find out more in the Learning and Teaching section).

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 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!

About the School of Education

The School of Education has a long-standing reputation as a centre of excellence for teaching and research in a wide range of areas of educational practice and policy. It is an international leader in education with a history of top rated research. In the 2016 QS World Rankings, it was ranked 28th in the World and joint 7th in Europe/UK.
The School employs over 100 academic staff who teach more than 2,500 students. It is home to a number of departments and research centres with a history of top rated research and is an international leader in education.
School of Education ranking:
- Ranked 6th in the Guardian University League Tables 2017
- Ranked 10th in the 2017 Complete University Guide
- In Top 3 for HEI provision in the Good Teacher Training Guide
- Ranked 28th in the World in the 2016 QS World Rankings
- Ranked 9th overall for Research in the 2014 REF (with more than 82% of research rated as ‘internationally excellent’ (3*) or ‘world leading’ (4*).
- Rated 'outstanding' in latest Ofsted inspection (2013) for its Teacher Training programmes
- Ranked third for Education in The Times Good University Guide 2017

Funding and Scholarships

There are many ways to finance your postgraduate study at the University of Birmingham. To see what funding and scholarships are available, please visit: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/funding

Open Days

Explore postgraduate study at Birmingham at our on-campus open days.
Register to attend at: http://www.birmingham.ac.uk/postgraduate/visit

Virtual Open Days

If you can’t make it to one of our on-campus open days, our virtual open days run regularly throughout the year. For more information, please visit: http://www.pg.bham.ac.uk

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This course is designed for teachers or other professionals who have an interest in increasing their knowledge and skills in the field of special needs. Read more
This course is designed for teachers or other professionals who have an interest in increasing their knowledge and skills in the field of special needs.

The course contains both taught and experiential elements. It covers the theoretical aspects of each area, practical strategies and aspects of self-development. The course is also supplemented by seminars and workshops about study & research skills as well as additional needs such as sensory impairments, speech and language difficulties, and severe learning difficulties.

Students also have the opportunity to volunteer at local schools to gain greater experience via the University’s Active Communities programme. (http://www.nottingham.ac.uk/active-communities/)

Course Content

This course comprises four core 30-credit modules and dissertation.

The current modules covered by the MA are:

Understanding and Supporting Students with Reading Difficulties/Dyslexia
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Behaviour and Relationship Management: from theory to practice
Understanding and Supporting Mental Health

Please note that all module details are subject to change.

Assessment

Two modules are assessed by a written assignment of 5,000-6,000 words, one module via a reflective journal and one module by a paper presentation.

The dissertation is an original piece of work and should be 12,000 – 15,000 words (or their equivalent) in one of the selected modules or an approved topic.

Course Structure

The MA in Special Needs can be completed over 1 year of full-time study or 2 to 4 years of part-time study.

We also offer a Postgraduate Diploma and Postgraduate Certificate in Special Needs.

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Modern family life has been transformed by high divorce rates, the decline of the extended family, easy access to alcohol and drugs and other social and cultural factors, adversely impacting on many of today's young people. Read more
Modern family life has been transformed by high divorce rates, the decline of the extended family, easy access to alcohol and drugs and other social and cultural factors, adversely impacting on many of today's young people. By developing your 'play therapy tool-kit' competencies to an advanced level, using mediums such as storytelling, music, dance and drama, you will be able to work with children who have serious social, emotional, behaviour and mental health difficulties.

You will focus primarily on non-directive play, where you will encourage the child to work towards their own solutions to problems through play. This allows you to explore ways of integrating the child as the centre of a social system made up of school, family and teams of support. You will also undertake 100 hours of clinically supervised work with children in a variety of practical settings.

Please note that all applications and queries for this course will be dealt with by APAC, and that start dates may differ depending on your location of study. Find out more on the APAC website.

- Research Excellence Framework 2014: we entered an increased number of units for this assessment, up from 11% in 2008 to 33% in 2014.

Visit the website http://courses.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/playtherapy_pgdip

Mature Applicants

Our University welcomes applications from mature applicants who demonstrate academic potential. We usually require some evidence of recent academic study, for example completion of an access course, however recent relevant work experience may also be considered. Please note that for some of our professional courses all applicants will need to meet the specified entry criteria and in these cases work experience cannot be considered in lieu.

If you wish to apply through this route you should refer to our University Recognition of Prior Learning policy that is available on our website (http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/studenthub/recognition-of-prior-learning.htm).

Please note that all applicants to our University are required to meet our standard English language requirement of GCSE grade C or equivalent, variations to this will be listed on the individual course entry requirements.

Careers

Upon graduation you will be able to practise independently as a Certified Play Therapist in a number of settings including schools, primary health care, care homes, adoption and fostering agencies, hospitals and social services where you will work with individual and groups of children with moderate to severe emotional, behavioural and mental health problems.

- Clinical Supervisor
- Play Therapy Instructor
- Play Therapist

Careers advice: The dedicated Jobs and Careers team offers expert advice and a host of resources to help you choose and gain employment. Whether you're in your first or final year, you can speak to members of staff from our Careers Office who can offer you advice from writing a CV to searching for jobs.

Visit the careers site - https://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/employability/jobs-careers-support.htm

Course Benefits

As you progress, you will develop your own network of contacts and be able to join Play Therapy UK (PTUK) local support groups and meet experienced practitioners. You will join the PTUK as a trainee member, observe the ethical framework and clinical governance requirements designed to protect the public.

You will also undertake 100 hours of clinically supervised work with children in either a primary school, special needs school, nursery, primary health care, hospital, care home or adoption and foster care setting, where you will apply your learning in a practical setting.

Our Faculty of Health & Social Sciences has a well-established Playwork group which has close links with APAC and professional organisations Play Therapy UK and Play Therapy International.

Modules

Working Therapeutically with Groups of Children - Developing Metaphorical Play Skills at an Advanced Level
Learn how to use advanced play therapy interventions with children who have more severe problems, and look at working therapeutically with groups of children.

Therapeutic Decision Taking, Developing Skills for Working with More Severe Problems
Learn how to apply your critical judgment, mastery of sand play and art therapy techniques within a broader range of conditions, and be prepared to act within a legal and ethical framework as advocates of children who are part of the legal process.

Integrating the Therapeutic Tool-kit with Practice and Research
Move from being a student to becoming an autonomous, reflective, evidence-based practitioner who will develop play therapy services and serve as a worthy ambassador for the profession.

Professor Ieuan Ellis

Dean, Faculty of Health and Social Sciences

"We have a long history of providing education across a wide range of professional and academic disciplines in health, applied global ethics, social sciences and related subject areas... The Faculty has a number of areas of research excellence."

Ieuan is responsible for the strategic leadership of the Faculty of Health and Social sciences. He is also a member of Academic Board, and an elected staff representative on the Board of Governors. He is also Chair of the UK Council of Deans of Health and Co-chair of the National Allied Health Professions Advisory Board. After practicing as a chartered physiotherapist in the NHS and private sector, Ieuan entered higher education working initially at Northumbria University prior to joining our University. Ieuan has held a number of leadership and management roles across health and social care education and was awarded a personal chair as Professor in Healthcare Education.

Facilities

- Library
Our libraries are two of the only university libraries in the UK open 24/7 every day of the year. However you like to study, the libraries have got you covered with group study, silent study, extensive e-learning resources and PC suites.

- Clinical Skills Suite
The £1 million suite has been designed to meet the learning needs of a range of health professionals, with specialist equipment in purpose-built rooms enabling a variety of sessions to be carried out in a suitable and safe environment.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/postgraduate/how-to-apply/

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This programme is designed for anyone wishing to develop their knowledge and understanding of issues relating to special educational needs and inclusion at Master’s level, including practitioners working with children, young people and adults in a range of different contexts. Read more
This programme is designed for anyone wishing to develop their knowledge and understanding of issues relating to special educational needs and inclusion at Master’s level, including practitioners working with children, young people and adults in a range of different contexts. However, some modules may require people to be working in practice. We can also offer bespoke training packages for a variety of settings.

Course content

All the modules are 30 CATs points each, apart from the final Dissertation which is 60 CATs points and is a compulsory module for those aiming for a MA award.

Students can choose from a range of optional modules which provide an opportunity to critically reflect on debates and controversies surrounding the development of inclusive practice in a variety of settings and contexts, national and international and in relation to various individual needs.

Course modules (16/17)

-Promoting Inclusive Practice
-Understanding Dyslexia: Identification, Curriculum & Teaching
-Understanding Autism Spectrum Disorders
-Perspectives on Social, Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties
-Pupils with Severe, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties 1 and 2
-Key Concepts in Inclusion and Diversity
-Leadership and Management in BESD
-Understanding Multi-Sensory Impairment
-Physical Disabilities: Contexts and Interventions
-Physical Disabilities: Curriculum Issues
-Evaluating Approaches for Individuals on the Autism Spectrum
-Organisational based Project
-Research Methods
-Speech, Language and Communication needs
-Theoretical Perspectives on SpLD (Dyslexia) where are we now?
-The National Award for SEN Coordination 1 and 2
-Autism in the Early Years
-Using Standardised Assessments in Educational Settings: Theory and Practice
-Understanding Challenging Behaviour in People with Autism and/or Learning Disabilities
-Promoting EAL Practice (English Additional Learning and Bilingualism in Education)
-Research Thesis
-Dissertation

Students studying for a MA will have to complete a compulsory research project, either the Dissertation on its own, or a Research Thesis and the Research Methods module together.

Methods of Learning

Modules will be taught across three semesters per year through a combination of approaches such as lectures, seminars, group work, case studies, tutorials and independent enquiries. A key strength of our programme is our blended learning approach. This provides the opportunity to learn collaboratively both face to face and online.

Schedule

For this programme taught study would be a combination of lectures, seminars and online activities which is usually 3 hours per week, per module. We recommend students to spend 10 hours per week, per module in self-directed study time.

Students studying in India or Thailand will have block classes for 4-5 days with additional online support.

PG Certificate- one year full time or between one to two years part-time.
PG Diploma- one year full time or between two to three years part-time.
MA – one year full time or between two to four years part-time.

The programme has September and January in-takes for home students and September in-take only for international students.

Assessments

Assessment procedures are flexible and sensitive to either personal interests or existing professional workloads. Modules are assessed on the basis of essays, case studies, portfolios or reports and small-scale research projects.

Facilities and Special Features

Our integrated learning environment provides access to course materials and to a well-resourced library enabling students to access e-books and electronic journals from home.

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This programme is aimed at people interested in developing their knowledge and skills in the field of autism spectrum, including Asperger syndrome. Read more
This programme is aimed at people interested in developing their knowledge and skills in the field of autism spectrum, including Asperger syndrome. This specialist pathway is ideal for professionals working in early years, primary or secondary schools, further and higher education, voluntary sector, advisory roles, and residential settings. It would also be available (subject to entry qualifications) to people with a personal interest, for example individuals on the autism spectrum and family members.

Course content

This programme provides in-depth knowledge and understanding of various aspects related to autism. The modules place specific emphasis on understanding autism from the individual and their family perspective. Theoretical perspectives related to autism and learning are explored in order to better understand the strengths and needs of individuals. A thorough analysis of evidence based approaches will be included in order to evaluate best practice in this field. The aim of the programme is to help participants to reduce the barriers that individuals with autism face in education and wider society. Participants will be encouraged to critically reflect and analyse their practice.

The modules undertaken will vary depending upon the selected exit award (PG certificate, diploma, MA). Each module is 30 level 7 CATs points, the final Dissertation is 60 CATs points. Students progressing to MA will undertake a Research Methods module and will complete a dissertation as part of their study.

Course modules (16/17)

-Understanding Autistic Spectrum Disorders
-Autism in the Early Years
-Understanding Challenging Behaviour in People with Autism and/or Learning Disabilities
-Evaluating Approaches for Individuals on the Autism Spectrum
-Research Thesis
-Dissertation
-Research Methods

Students on PG Diploma or MA will study another optional module such as Key concepts in Inclusion or Understanding Severe and Profound Multiple Learning Difficulties. Students on the MA route will then complete an independent research project, either the Dissertation on its own, or the Research Thesis and Research Methods modules together.

Methods of Learning

Modules will be taught through a combination of approaches such as lectures, seminars, group work, case studies, tutorials and independent enquiries. A key strength of our programme is our blended learning approach. This provides the opportunity to learn collaboratively both face to face and online.

Schedule

For this programme taught study would be a combination of lectures, seminars and online activities which is usually 3 hours per week, per module. We recommend students to spend 10 hours per week, per module in self-directed study time.

PG Certificate– one year full time or between one to two years part-time.

PG Diploma– one year full time or between two to three years part-time.

MA – one year full time or between two to four years part-time.

September, 2016/ 2017, Full-time and Part-time.

Assessments

Assessment procedures are flexible and sensitive to either personal interests or existing professional workloads. Modules are assessed on the basis of essays, case studies, portfolios or reports and small-scale research projects.

Facilities and Special Features

Facilities available
-Virtual Learning environment.
-Fantastic library facilities.

Special features
The course is taught by senior lecturers who have extensive professional experience of working with individuals on the autism spectrum across the age and ability range. In addition, lecturers have an extensive research background.

Careers

If you are already working in the field of autism then the in-depth knowledge you will gain from this programme can help you to improve your practice or apply for management positions. A range of other career options in education, social care and voluntary sectors will be possible, such as being an advocate, learning mentor, or family adviser. For those who want to pursue further post-graduate research there is also a possibility of studying for a PhD.

Work Experience - For students who do not have any practical experience in the field, optional opportunities to visit settings can be arranged.

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This module is designed for health or social care-professionals working with people with severe and enduring mental health difficulties that have so-called “complex” care needs. Read more
This module is designed for health or social care-professionals working with people with severe and enduring mental health difficulties that have so-called “complex” care needs.

This module can help further develop your therapy skills with a focus on working with people with a diagnosis of psychosis and personality disorder. It draws upon a range of psychological therapies, including recent innovations in strengths-based cognitive behavioural therapy and ‘third wave’ or ‘contextual’ psychotherapeutic practice, acceptance and commitment therapy, schema therapy, mindfulness and principles of positive psychology.

Why Bradford?

The key to what differentiates the University of Bradford offer for specialist skills and post-registration development (SSPRD) in Mental Health practice is flexibility and quality. Bradford also seeks to be responsive and innovative in the development and delivery of its SSPRD courses to meet the continually changing demands of clinical practitioners. We now offer, for example, a new module in Aspects of Mental Health Care and Psychological Wellbeing for Health Professionals. This is specifically for health care professionals not from a mental health background to enhance their understanding of working with people’s mental health difficulties to develop and bring those skills to your clinical area.

The very latest research, policy, guidelines and best-practice are synthesized in the delivery of these courses by highly experienced clinical-academics.

For those practitioners with a firm mental health foundation we offer a postgraduate certificate in cognitive behavioural therapies in our Professional Healthcare Practice programme, co-delivered by clinicians who are the lead in their clinical area and well versed in the complexities of integrating psychological approaches into nursing practice.

Our learning materials are further informed by the Scottish Recovery Network and NHS Education for Scotland that have been at the forefront of developing this kind of clinical practice.

At the Faculty of Health Studies, University of Bradford, you can choose to study for individual modules, a named award or build module credits through the SSPRD Framework for Flexible Learning to achieve an award relevant to your professional needs.
The Framework for Flexible Learning in Health and Social Care is a Faculty-wide academic structure for Specialist Skills and Post-Registration Development. It offers students increased flexibility and choice in the modules and courses that can be undertaken and it is also responsive to employer needs. The flexibility also allows you to move from one award to another if your career changes or you take time out from regular studying. Shared teaching and research expertise from across the Faculty is offered through interdisciplinary teaching across our core research modules.

The Faculty of Health Studies is regionally, nationally and internationally recognised for its teaching and research, and works with a number of healthcare partners to ensure clinical excellence.

Modules

This module is provided as part of this interdisciplinary Framework within the Faculty of Health Studies. The Framework enables students to create an individualised programme of study that will meet either their needs and/or the employers’ needs for a changing diverse workforce within a modern organisation.

The modules and academic awards are presented in areas representing employment practice or work based or clinical disciplines.

Whilst some students can build their own academic awards by choosing their own menu of module options, other students will opt for a named academic award. The Framework also provides the option for students to move from their chosen named award to another award if their job or personal circumstances change and they need to alter the focus of their studies. The majority of named awards also offer students, the option of choosing at least one module, sometimes more, from across the Faculty module catalogue enabling them to shape their award more specifically to their needs.

Learning activities and assessment

Topics covered include:
-Collaborative Case Formulation
-Schema Therapy
-Mindfulness
-Values Based Approaches
-Strengths Focused Approaches
-Integrating Positive Psychology
-Working with Change Difficulties
-Self-Practice

Career support and prospects

The University is committed to helping students develop and enhance employability and this is an integral part of many programmes. Specialist support is available throughout the course from Career and Employability Services including help to find part-time work while studying, placements, vacation work and graduate vacancies. Students are encouraged to access this support at an early stage and to use the extensive resources on the Careers website.

Discussing options with specialist advisers helps to clarify plans through exploring options and refining skills of job-hunting. In most of our programmes there is direct input by Career Development Advisers into the curriculum or through specially arranged workshops.

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Our Cognitive Behavioural Therapy PGDip produces psychological therapists who are competent in the practice of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) for patients affected by psychological disorders. Read more
Our Cognitive Behavioural Therapy PGDip produces psychological therapists who are competent in the practice of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) for patients affected by psychological disorders. It focuses predominantly on the treatment of depression and anxiety disorders.

The course offers CBT practitioner level training designed for healthcare and related professionals who have already completed introductory and/or intermediate CBT training (or equivalent) and have some supervised experience of providing CBT.

You will gain:
-Practical, intensive and detailed training to facilitate the development of competent CBT skills, to a defined standard
-The necessary knowledge and attitudes to be an open-minded, informed and reflective CBT practitioner
-A critical approach to the subject through engagement with relevant theory, models and evidence

These skills equip you to become a creative independent CBT practitioner, in accordance with British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) guidelines for good practice, and to contribute to the further development of CBT. As a graduate of this course you are eligible for practitioner accreditation with BABCP through Standard or Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) curriculum routes.

The course enables you to develop competency in CBT for anxiety disorders and become a skilled practitioner in this therapeutic approach. The focus is on treating patients with diagnosable anxiety disorders such as Social Phobia, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD), etc. The emphasis is on high-intensity, individual CBT rather than guided self-help, psycho-education or lower intensity anxiety management.

Underpinning the course is a student centred learning approach to developing as a CBT therapist. You are required to conduct CBT therapy with anxiety-disordered patients in their host services. These patients will have moderate-severe anxiety symptoms appropriate for high-intensity psychological therapy.

The Diploma extends into the psychological treatment of major depression and specialist CBT applications. You will work with depressed patients who are more likely to have complex and recurrent difficulties. Your work on supervised cases will cover a broad range of disorders and complex conditions.

Facilities

The School of Psychology is based on the University campus in the Ridley Building. You will benefit from seminar rooms and meeting spaces, as well as excellent practical facilities for carrying out experiments.

Additional facilities for psychological research are available in:
-The Institute of Neuroscience for comparative and neuroscience approaches
-The Institute of Health and Society for health psychology, and development and disability
-Culture Lab for human–computer interaction
-The School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences for disorders of language

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Recovery oriented practice is both a political movement and a potential paradigm shift in the focus of how we work with people to build meaningful and worthwhile lives in the face of emotional and psychological distress. Read more
Recovery oriented practice is both a political movement and a potential paradigm shift in the focus of how we work with people to build meaningful and worthwhile lives in the face of emotional and psychological distress.

This module introduces recovery and the steps that are needed by practitioners and organisations alike to adopt a recovery oriented approach to practice. Workshops on recovery-oriented assessment, care-planning, goal-setting, safety management and coaching approaches are informed by the latest evidence-based models and research.

This module will prepare you for the transition into recover-oriented practice. You will be able to think critically and reflexively about the use of recovery-oriented practice and how it fits in the organisational context. You will develop solution-focused cognitive-behavioural coaching skills to integrate into your practice.

The module is informed by cutting edge recovery-oriented research from practitioners previously involved in the recovery research of International quality.

Why Bradford?

This module is being delivered by experts in the field of mental health and recovery. The leads for the module have a diverse and current range of experience in mental health practice – as currently active clinical professionals in addition to their teaching responsibilities and also from on-going advanced clinical practice and training.

Modules

This module is provided as part of this interdisciplinary Framework within the Faculty of Health Studies. The Framework enables students to create an individualised programme of study that will meet either their needs and/or the employers’ needs for a changing diverse workforce within a modern organisation.

The modules and academic awards are presented in areas representing employment practice or work based or clinical disciplines.

Whilst some students can build their own academic awards by choosing their own menu of module options, other students will opt for a named academic award. The Framework also provides the option for students to move from their chosen named award to another award if their job or personal circumstances change and they need to alter the focus of their studies. The majority of named awards also offer students, the option of choosing at least one module, sometimes more, from across the Faculty module catalogue enabling them to shape their award more specifically to their needs.

Learning activities and assessment

This module is assessed using a combination of critically reflexive essay, a presentation on the application of recovery in practice and a clinical skills inventory.

Career support and prospects

The University is committed to helping students develop and enhance employability and this is an integral part of many programmes. Specialist support is available throughout the course from Career and Employability Services including help to find part-time work while studying, placements, vacation work and graduate vacancies. Students are encouraged to access this support at an early stage and to use the extensive resources on the Careers website.

Discussing options with specialist advisers helps to clarify plans through exploring options and refining skills of job-hunting. In most of our programmes there is direct input by Career Development Advisers into the curriculum or through specially arranged workshops.

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