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Education - Policy and International Development MSc

Course Description

The Policy and International Development pathway focuses on the relationship between education policy and practice and international development. It probes the influence of global policy agendas on education and the contribution that education makes to social justice, economic growth and sustainable development. In line with the sustainable development agenda, development is treated as an international issue and the pathway considers case studies from countries around the world as well as from within Bristol. It includes study of formal and informal education through diverse institutions and organisations, including schools, universities and community organisations.

The pathway takes a critical look at ideas about social development, such as human rights, the capability approach and peace building, and their implications for education policy and practice. There will be opportunities to explore how educational theories and practice travel between and are adapted to the specific contexts. You will analyse the role of key organisations involved in the global governance of education, including civil society, international non-governmental organisations, development agencies and commercial bodies.

The pathway develops skills for using international and comparative research, both in education and in analysing education policy. You will be supported to develop your own reasoned position and distinctive critical voice for commenting on education policy and education’s role within social development at international, national and local level. You will have access to first-class library and information services, allowing you to study the specific ideas, issues, initiatives and policies that you are interested in.

Programme structure

Core units
-Introduction to Educational Inquiry
-International Development, Comparative Research and Education
-Education, Peace and Sustainable Development
-Education Policy in a Global Context

Optional units
-Students studying this programme will be able to take optional units from across the school.

-You will also complete a 15,000-word dissertation.


We offer the academic and personal development opportunities to equip you for the intellectual, social and personal challenges that you will encounter during your career. Our overarching goal is to enable our graduates to display the following characteristics:
-Equipped to demonstrate impact, excellence and distinctiveness in their chosen field.
-Visionary, imaginative, innovative, reflective and creative.
-High ideals and values, including a strong sense of social justice.
-Highly employable throughout the world.
-Adaptable, with the potential to be a leader in work and in the community.

Visit the Education - Policy and International Development MSc page on the University of Bristol website for more details!

Entry Requirements

A UK undergraduate honours degree (or equivalent).

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