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Primary Education (Policy and Practice) (MA)

Course Description

The Primary Education (Policy and Practice) MA meets the rapidly changing needs of professionals educating young children, in examining critically the bases for current practices in primary schools, providing insight into international developments in primary education and in offering opportunities to work with leading researchers and practitioners in the field.

See the website http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/degrees/primary-education-policy-practice-ma

Key Information

- Application dates
All applicants:
Open: 19 October 2015
Close: 29 July 2016

English Language Requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.
The English language level for this programme is: Special. Only the IELTS is accepted. Applicants must obtain an overall grade of 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in the reading subtest and 6.0 in the writing subtest.
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/life/international/english-requirements .

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/international .

Degree Information

The Primary Education (Policy and Practice) MA offers opportunities to engage with the latest research and international debate concerning the curriculum, pedagogy and assessment and implications for professional practice in primary education. Students will develop knowledge and skills to evaluate and conduct educational research related to their professional interests and develop their own perspectives as leaders in primary education.

Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits.

The programme consists of three core modules (90 credits), a dissertation (60 credits) or report (30 credits), and recommended/optional modules (30 credits each) as outlined below. Some modules are available to study remotely.

- Core Modules
Futures for Policy and Practice in Primary Education
Researching Early Years and Primary Education
What is Education?

- Options
A range of optional modules is available to students each year. Students can select optional modules to reflect their personal and professional interests. Recommended modules taken by students in recent years include:
Contemporary Issues and Debates in Primary Education
Literacy Development
Children's Rights in Practice
Assessment for Learning
The Multilingual Classroom
Other modules are also possible - please contact the programme leader Esmé Glauert for advice.

- Dissertation/report
All students undertake an independent research project in primary education (policy and practice). The project culminates in a dissertation of 20,000 words or a report of 10,000 words on a topic that has been agreed with your tutor.

Teaching and Learning

A range of learning and teaching approaches is employed across the programme, including lectures, student presentations, group discussion, directed reading/writing tasks and contributions to the Virtual Learning Environment, designed to promote active engagement and capitalise on participants' diverse backgrounds. Student performance is assessed through coursework assignments and the dissertation/report.


Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed (where available) below. For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/scholarships .

- IOE Centenary Masters Scholarships
Eligibility: Overseas students

- IOE Centenary Research Scholarships
Eligibility: EU students

- IOE COLFUTURO Fee Partnership
Value: UCL provides a 50% contribution towards tuition fees. (1 year)
Eligibility: Overseas students
Criteria: Based on academic merit

- IOE Commonwealth Distance Scholars
Value: Fees and some expenses
Eligibility: Overseas students

- IOE CONICyT Fee Partnership
Value: IoE provides a 20% contribution towards tuition fees. (1 year)
Eligibility: Overseas students

- IOE Erasmus Bursary
Value: £350/month (1)
Eligibility: UK, EU, Overseas students

- IOE Fulbright
Eligibility: Overseas students

- IOE International Master's Student Bursaries
Eligibility: Overseas students

- IOE Vietnam International Education Development Scholarships - PGT
Eligibility: Overseas students

- IOE Windle Trust Scholarship
Eligibility: Overseas students

More scholarships are listed on the Scholarships and Funding website http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/scholarships


Graduates of this programme are currently working in a broad range of careers, both nationally and internationally. Many have leadership roles in schools, for example as school mentors for early career teachers, subject leaders, phase co-ordinators, assistant head of teachers or head teachers. Others work as education advisers and consultants across a range of schools or as inspectors and policymakers at both local and national levels. Graduates can also be found working as researchers, lecturers and teacher educators in higher education and in educational services outside schools such as museums, publishing or children's support services.

Top career destinations for this degree:
- Primary School Teacher, Charles Dickens Primary School (2011)
- Curriculum Manager, Fieldwork Education (2012)
- Year One Teacher and Deputy Head of School, International Institute of Topical Agriculture (2012)
- Teacher, St James College (2013)
- English Teacher, City and Islington College (2013)

- Employability
Participation in the programme fosters the development of a number of key skills and personal qualities important in a range of professional contexts including:
- Independence and self-direction in learning - important in continuing professional development in a fast-changing educational climate
- Ability to examine complex issues systematically and critically - in the context of rapid policy change and increasing requirements for accountability
- Exercise of initiative and creativity - in interpreting policy and research in particular local contexts to enhance the quality of learning and teaching
- Skills in communication both orally and in writing to varied audiences - children, educators, parents, governors, policymakers.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The Department of Learning and Leadership at UCL Institute of Education has developed an internationally recognised reputation for early childhood and pre-school and primary education studies.

The department has a vibrant teaching programme, providing opportunities for specialist study of early years and primary education in initial teacher education and at postgraduate and doctoral levels. It offers a range enriching events including research seminars and conferences in the field.

In all its work, the department is strongly committed to working in partnership with government agencies, education authorities, schools, early years and community groups and other departments within UCL Institute of Education.

Application and next steps

- Applications
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

- Who can apply?
This programme is suited to a wide range of professionals involved in primary education seeking continuing professional development, such as class teachers, curriculum co-ordinators, senior leaders, policy advisers, consultants and lecturers in higher education, as well as those working with children in related fields such as museums or children's services.

What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Primary Education (Policy and Practice) at graduate level
- why you want to study Primary Education (Policy and Practice) at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
- how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this challenging programme
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree

Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.

For more information see the Applications page http://www.ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/apply .

Visit the Primary Education (Policy and Practice) (MA) page on the University College London website for more details!

All Available Videos:

Student Profiles

Entry Requirements

Normally a minimum of a lower second-class bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Students should also ideally have direct professional involvement with pre-school or primary education either in or outside the UK.

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