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The PDA is a unique award - you set out the learning pathway, designing a bespoke academic qualification to suit your career and learning aspirations.

This award is flexible as you can:

  • Start this award without importing credit, building credit module by module.
  • Import previous UWE Bristol credit/external credit into the award to include marks which will count towards the final classification (depending on level of study, you will need to provide copies of transcripts).
  • Gain credit from your experience; if you wish to do this you will be able to evidence this in a module via Accredited Experiential Learning (this module is 50% of normal fee).

The Professional Development Award (PDA) has only one compulsory module,; Evidencing Work Based Learning (EWBL), which can be done at distance, and on a reflective practice if you wish (see our EWBL pages which demonstrate how this module can benefit both you and your employer).

The PDA can be started at any time; there are no limitations on how long you would like to spend completing the award.

The award descriptor you attain will be e.g. MSc Professional Development.

The benefits of obtaining a PDA for employers and employees are that the Award can:

  • address skill shortages
  • address staff development objectives
  • be tailored to upskill staff whilst offering a bespoke qualification valued by employers, and employees alike.


Learning and Teaching

  • This will vary depending on the modules you choose to study.


  • Assessment details for the Evidencing Work Based Learning element of the award can be found on the EWBL webpage.
  • Assessment of more formally taught modules and modules for the assessment of experiential learning will use a range of approaches, negotiated between the academic facilitator, learner and the workplace.
  • For more details, see our full glossary of assessment terms.

Visit the Professional Development - MA/MSc page on the University of the West of England, Bristol website for more details!




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