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Course content

This MA course has emerged as a direct result of our work with local practitioners and senior leaders in educational establishments. The course builds on existing structures to further integrate academic study with work-based learning and research. 

The programme can be tailored to your interests and professional development needs whether you are a recently qualified teacher looking to return to study, a school mentor ready to explore your role in the context of our MA programme, you are interested in a curriculum subject or particular aspect of pedagogy, a middle-leader keen to make improvements to your department or a senior leader looking for a transformative learning experience.

The revised structure ensures a coherent and supportive student experience throughout the programme which comprises of core modules that can be applied in a variety of different areas. Our flexible programme reflects the expectation that practitioners work in wider networks with colleagues and alongside expert facilitators, including the university teaching team.

You will graduate with an in-depth and critical understanding of theory and research. Modules are designed to complement and extend your professional commitments, and teaching and assignment submissions are scheduled to fit around your existing work.

Course structure

The flexibility of our programme means that studying for the Education MA allows you to pursue your individual interests and professional development needs across the entire course.

The number of modules taken enables a manageable workload as well as further opportunities for formative assessment.

You will learn through a mixture of lectures, taught sessions, tutorials, online learning, group work, independent study and through work-related activities.

Areas of study

You will begin the programme with a focus on current issues reflecting on roles, responsibilities and interests. You will be supported to explore these issues from prospective within the broader context of policy and current research.

Subsequently, you will undertake critical thinking about practice, teaching and learning that will lead to an enquiry into an issue of professional relevance. This enquiry is a helpful and formative small-scale project which acts as a useful preparation before starting work on you MA thesis. The outcomes of the enquiry are intended to have a direct impact on pupils, colleagues and the wider education field, in addition to your own professional understanding.

Aims

Students on this course will:

  • develop systematic understanding of knowledge and a critical awareness of debates and developments in education as a field of study
  • undertake systematic and critical reflection and debate in the light of current and emerging policy contexts
  • engender an understanding of and commitment to professional learning and development and its place for the practitioner and subsequent practice
  • develop a thorough understanding of the principles of research in the context of learning and development to facilitate research literacy
  • develop conceptual understanding that enables critical evaluation of current research and advanced scholarship in the discipline and evaluation of methodologies
  • develop skills, knowledge and understandings and apply this learning to their roles, responsibilities and career aspirations.

Part-time route

You will study up to five modules, split over two to three years depending on any recognition of prior learning. These modules build on and extend previous study and learning and provide a coherent and supportive learning journey towards achieving the MA Education.

Sessions are usually scheduled for Thursday evenings or Saturday mornings.

Year 1

  • Engaging with Professional Development (20 credits)
  • Critical Perspectives on Education (40 credits)

Should you wish to withdraw from the course after having successfully completing 60 masters-level credits, you exit with a Postgraduate Certificate Professional Education Studies (PGCert PES).

Year 2

If you have any recognition of prior learning (normally level-7 credits from a PGCE or PGCert) you will join the programme at this stage.

  • Professional Learning through Enquiry (40 credits)
  • Designing your Research Proposal (20 credits)

Should you wish to withdraw from the course after having successfully completing 120 masters level credits, you exit with a postgraduate diploma Education (PGDip).

Year 3

You will complete your studies by undertaking an appropriate small-scale research project to produce your dissertation.

  • Research project (60 credits)

Full-time route

You will study four modules which are designed to build on and extend previous study and learning and which provide a coherent and supportive learning journey towards achieving the MA Education.

This route allows you to complete your studies over a calendar year (normally September-September). Usually you will attend the university for two days each week for taught sessions. You need to be working in, or have regular access to, a relevant professional situation appropriate to an MA in Education research area.

The overall aims of the MA are addressed through a reduced number of modules in order to achieve a manageable workload with opportunities for formative assessment.

Teaching semester 1 (October–February)

If you have any prior learning (normally level-7 credits from a PGCE or PGCert) you will begin the programme from the third module.

  • Critical Perspectives on Education (40 credits)
  • Developing a Practice-based Research Proposal (40 credits)

Should you wish to withdraw from the course having successfully completing 80 masters-level credits, you exit with a Postgraduate Certificate Professional Education Studies (PGCert PES) Award.

Teaching semester 2 (February–June)

  • Professional Learning through Enquiry (40 credits)

Should you wish to withdraw from the course having successfully completing 120 masters-level credits, you exit with a Postgraduate Diploma Education Award (PGDip).

  • Dissertation (60 credits)

Careers and employability

This course will further your professional development, allow you to progress your expertise within the field of education and enhance your employability for leadership roles.

Enhanced knowledge of educational issues and specialist areas of interest are attractive to a wide range of employers and typical career moves after graduation include promotion to senior leadership teams, advisory roles or promotion into a different education sector including those with capacity to influence policy.

Our graduates have commented on the ways that the MA in Education has positioned them for senior and leadership roles, for making a career move and improving their skills and professional potential.


Visit the Education (MA) page on the University of Brighton website for more details!

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