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  • Study Type

    Full time & Part time available

  • Subject Areas

    Education

  • Start Date

    September

  • Course Duration

    1 year full time, 3 years part time

  • Course Type

    MA

  • Course Fees

    website

  • Last Updated

    24 January 2018

Course Content

Course content

This programme is for people who are interested in taking an international and comparative perspective on educational issues. We offer two pathways on the International Studies in Education, the general International Studies in Education and the Education and Development specialist pathway. The specialist pathway shares the same core themes and outcomes, however it has a distinctive focus and different compulsory modules.

The International Studies in Education programme may be of interest to teachers, headteachers/principals, education administrators, and those working with non-governmental organisations and international agencies that play a role in formal and non-formal education. It will enable you to have a critical understanding of key debates surrounding education as an international issue and to make analytical comparisons between educational issues in different contexts, including your own.

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

Course details

This programme is designed for people who want to gain an international perspective on education. You will be studying with a wide range of people from different countries, with diverse career aspirations, and with varied levels of experience. What you will all have in common is an interest in education, and a desire to understand its functions in different parts of the world, and as a global phenomenon. 

Programme Aims

  • You will have a critical understanding of key debates surrounding education as an international issue
  • You will make analytical comparisons between educational issues in different contexts, including your own

Global social justice is a theme of all strands of this programme.

Specialist pathway

The Education and Development pathway is in collaboration with the International Development Department in the School of Government and Society. It follows the same broad lines of the core programme, but has a different focus and different compulsory modules.

Please note that like most Masters programmes, this programme does not confer qualified teacher status.

Ask our current students and alumni a question

These are experienced postgraduates who have previously studied, or are currently studying, at the University of Birmingham, and they will offer help and advice from a student perspective.

You may also be interested in our Management of Special Education in Developing Countries programme

Learning and teaching

Module sessions run in weekly three-hour blocks. In a typical three-hour session, there will be a mixture of tutor presentation, group discussions and exercises, and independent research. We aim for a stimulating variety, and to take advantage of the international nature of the group, we encourage student-to-student learning to develop a comparative and international perspective. There are also opportunities for one-to-one tutorials with lecturers.

Assessment for the modules is typically comprised of one 4,000 word written assignment. For some modules, this will take the form of a traditional essay based mainly on an analysis of relevant literature. Innovative assessment approaches used in some modules include producing a written curriculum, reflections on school visits, or diaries. In the first term, there will be an early opportunity to submit a short piece of written work; the tutor will provide constructive feedback but a grade will not be assigned or counted. The dissertation is for 15,000 words in length, and usually includes some empirical research as well as literature review.

By the end of the programme, students will: 

  • combine the study of education internationally with development studies
  • explore the interconnectedness of theories, issues and practices in education and development
  • carry out empirical research on a question that concerns both education and development
  • develop knowledge and skills that will help them to take up or build on careers in education (eg schools, colleges, higher education) and governmental, non-governmental and international organisations concerned with education in developing countries (eg aid agencies, charities, UNESCO) 

Employability

The employment prospects from the International Studies in Education programmes are as diverse as the students on the course. These courses are not qualifications for a particular role, but the knowledge and skills you gain will enable you to pursue a range of career paths in education. For example, graduates from this programme have gone on to work in the education sector in the following kinds of jobs in different countries:

  • education management at school level 
  • work in Ministries and other national and regional authorities 
  • work in non-governmental organisations promoting education 
  • work in UN agencies 
  • educational research 
  • publishing 
  • teaching in national or international schools 
  • jobs in further or higher education institutions 
  • establishing private schools 
  • education consultancy

International Studies in Education can help you to start your career; advance your career in new directions or to new levels; or it can simply help you to do and to appreciate your current job with an enlightened international perspective.


Visit the International Studies in Education - MA page on the University of Birmingham website for more details!

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