The Masters’ in Professional Leadership and Management is an advanced programme of learning for professionals, managers and leaders working in public and community services who wish to develop their leadership capacities and strategic orientation. It is intellectually rigorous, critically examining the relationship between relevant theory, traditions of professional practice and contexts of change and innovation.
Participants will explore the character of professionalism, the professions, challenges to the professions and ways in which – through knowledge and technology, organisational form and regulatory practices - the nature of professional practice is changing. A major and distinctive focus is upon inter-professionalism and both ‘the new governance’ and new ways of working which require inter-professional models of service. The programme examines leadership and management in (and for) these new contexts and the knowledge and skills required to perform what are changing and demanding professional leadership and management roles. It is expected that professionals from health, education and social work will be strongly represented and, so, mutual and shared learning among participants is a core aim of the programme.
Aims of the Programme The aim of this course is to offer a broad, multi-disciplinary understanding of leadership and management for the public service professions, by bringing together academic insight and research into the professions and public leadership and management with participant and tutor experience of the contexts and character of professional practice. Through this, the wider aim is to promote greater understanding among professionals of the challenges involved in leadership and management of public service organisations, and to stimulate improved practice.
The course therefore aims to:
1) Survey, review and analyse the changing public services context in which professional practice is set 2) Examine, assess and apply ideas of leadership and management in professional and inter-professional contexts 3) Develop participants’ personal awareness, confidence and skills in managing and leading professional practice 4) Develop reflective practice, professional skills and professionals’ ability to analyse, negotiate, and make defensible judgements in complex situations.
Course Structure and Content The MPLM is a 2 year Part-Time Master’s programme which comprises: 4 core/compulsory modules (total 90 credits: 2 @ 30 credits and 2 @ 15 credits); a further 30 credits of module(s) to be taken as option(s); and a dissertation (60 credits).
Candidates for the Masters take four core/compulsory modules: The State, Professionalism and Inter-Professionalism; Leading and Managing in Multi-agency Settings; Management of Human Resources; and Research Methods. Through their choice of electives, students will be able EITHER to deepen their learning about interprofessional leadership and management OR to ‘specialise’ in the context, form and substance of leadership and management of professional practice in their chosen sector or professional area. The electives offer opportunities variously to pursue further:
a) key aspects of leadership and management, generally; b) understandings of the public service contexts in which professionals work; or c) subject knowledge related to complex professional practice.
The Dissertation will normally involve a research project within or related to the work setting, a work task or the student’s management/leadership role.
Assessment The methods of assessment selected to test achievement of the learning outcomes are intended to provide:
a) a blend of formative and summative assessment, the former intended to support progress towards the learning outcomes b) a blend of written work and other forms of submission/presentation, the latter intended to enable productive interchange among participants and to test the range of disciplines required of professional leaders and managers c) a set of tasks that invite participants to address one of the key learning outcomes – that is, the application of theory or method to practice d) a set of tasks that invite participants to draw on (share) experience and to reflect critically on that experience.