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    UCL Institute of Education Logo
  • Study Type

    Full time & Part time available

  • Subject Areas


  • Start Date

    September, April

  • Course Duration

    Full time: 1 year Part time: 2 years Flexible: up to 5 years

  • Course Type


  • Course Fees


  • Last Updated

    04 January 2018

Course content

The Educational Assessment MA investigates the purposes and potential uses of formative and summative assessment and the relationship between the two. The programme provides opportunities to review assessment of learning and for learning, it develops students' understanding of principal concepts in educational testing and encourages critical engagement with policy development in educational assessment.

About this degree

The programme provides students with the opportunity to develop an in-depth understanding of assessment issues, practices and policies both in the UK and internationally. Our graduates leave with key skills that they are able to apply in a range of workplaces, or they continue to further study at doctoral level.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of one core module (30 credits), and either three optional modules (90 credits) and a dissertation (60 credits), or a 30-credit report plus an additional optional module.

Core module

There is just one core module for the MA Educational Assessment

  • Assessment: Issues and Practice

Optional modules include

  • Assessment for Learning
  • Curriculum Design and Development
  • Educational Testing
  • Guiding Effective Learning and Teaching
  • International Perspectives on Education Reform: Curriculum and Assessment
  • Investigating Research
  • Understanding Research


All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a 20,000-word dissertation or a 10,000-word report.

Teaching and learning

Depending on the modules taken, the programme is delivered through face-to-face evening sessions, intensive five-day face-to-face daytime sessions, and/or online. A typical evening face-to-face session consists of two-and-a-half hours of lectures, dialogue, small group discussions, presentations and/or a range of other activities.

Further information on modules and degree structure is available on the department website: Educational Assessment MA


Graduates of this programme are currently working across a broad range of areas. Some are working as heads of department, deputy heads and head teachers in UK schools, while others are members of staff at awarding organisations and examination boards. Graduates can also be found working as members of staff of ministries of education, researchers and lecturers in universities and PhD students.

Recent career destinations for this degree

  • Lecturer in Communication, Liverpool John Moores University
  • Secondary School Teacher (ICT and Design Technology), London Catholic School


Our graduates leave with a strong skill set that is applicable to a range of workplace settings. They have in-depth knowledge of educational systems and policies that will enhance any role in a school or education workplace. Our students are able to work well in teams, and manage a demanding set of individual deadlines. Completion of the MA demonstrates a commitment to learning, the ability to face challenges, capacity to think critically about ideas and issues, and excellent communication skills, both written and spoken.

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?

The Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment Department at UCL Institute of Education is a world-leading centre for the study of curriculum, teaching and learning and assessment, as well as geography, business, mathematics, history, religious education, citizenship and science education.

The department provides an impressive range of cutting-edge MA and CPD programmes, variously presented in face-to-face, distance learning or mixed mode formats. In addition we offer a first-class PhD programme and staff members are actively involved in an extensive range of innovative, nationally and internationally acclaimed, research and development projects.

The department's student population is very diverse, as are the students on the MA: students, practising teachers and lecturers, awarding body staff members, policymakers and a rich and diverse range of international students.

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

The Research Excellence Framework, or REF, is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. The 2014 REF was carried out by the UK's higher education funding bodies, and the results used to allocate research funding from 2015/16.

The following REF score was awarded to the department: Curriculum, Pedagogy & Assessment

78% rated 4* (‘world-leading’) or 3* (‘internationally excellent’)

Learn more about the scope of UCL's research, and browse case studies, on our Research Impact website.

Visit the Educational Assessment (MA) page on the University College London website for more details!





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Recipient: University College London

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