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MA in Education

Course Description

Masters-level courses in education and teaching are designed to meet the needs of those working – or wanting to work – in teaching, management, education and development contexts. We aim to provide courses that:

are grounded in research
recognise and build on prior education-related knowledge and experience
develop professionally relevant knowledge, skills and understanding
introduce new knowledge and research perspectives on educational issues
enable the acquisition of further qualifications that enhance your career prospects.
This is an innovative, highly regarded and flexible MA with a significant research component designed for education professionals and students interested in education in both UK and global contexts.

The course enables you to develop your understanding of a broad range of issues and theoretical perspectives on practice and policy, and to specialise in areas that interest you most.

The full-time course is largely taught with research components while the part-time course is centred around supported, practice-based research.

The Early Years pathway (available one year full-time only) offers a route for trainee teachers wanting to earn Early Years teacher status working with children from birth to five years old.

As an Early Years teacher, you will specialise in early childhood development and be trained to deliver the Early Years Foundation Stage. Early Years focused sessions include: Communication, Language and Literacy including systematic synthetic phonics, Early Mathematical Development, Attachment disorder, Physical Development, Early Childhood Development.

Course structure

We continue to develop and update our modules for 2016 entry to ensure you have the best student experience. In addition to the course structure below, you may find it helpful to refer to the Modules tab.

Full-time course structure
Autumn term: you take Critical Reflection: Professional and Context-bound Learning • Educational Theory and Practice: Critical Reflection • Contexts, Curricula and Values: Literature Review.

Spring term: you take either Research Methods and Minor Project or choose a maximum of two modules from relevant, associated disciplines such as: Psychology in Education • Teachers: Policy and Practice in International Contexts • Curriculum, Learning and Society • Childhood and Youth in Global Perspectives: Rights, Protection and Justice • Critical Higher Education• Practical Teaching Techniques for Teachers of English as a Foreign Language.

Summer term: you work on a dissertation on a topic of your choice, either in the form of empirical research or a literature-based study.

Throughout the academic year, all full-time students take a module in Academic and Research Skills, which prepares them for academic writing on the course as well as for their Dissertation.

Part-time course structure
Our part-time routes are suitable for education professionals, including teachers and others with a range of specialist interests. These include disciplines such as English, Mathematics, Science, Humanities and Music; Special Educational Needs and Disabilities; and Widening Participation (refer right). We also offer a bespoke pathway for those teaching the International Baccalaureate (refer right).

The part-time course is designed to suit busy professionals, with taught sessions taking place on evenings (5pm-7pm) and Saturday mornings (a maximum of six per year). You also have the personalised support of a tutor with specialist expertise in your chosen research area. Tutorials can be arranged at your mutual convenience. These can be face-to-face and/or virtual.

All students typically take the following:

Critical Reflection: Professional and contextbound learning. This module enables you to gain 15 M-credits by demonstrating prior professional learning via presentation of a portfolio of evidence and discussion at interview
Educational Theory and Practice: Critical Reflection
Contexts, Curricula and Values: Literature Review
Research Methods: a poster presentation evaluating the piloting of a research instrument
Minor Project: a small-scale, empirical project
Dissertation: an empirical project or literature based review on a topic of your choice.
We offer variations on this part-time course structure:

Newly Qualified Teacher route (for all subject specialists): this route is suitable for newly qualified teachers who can bring up to 90 credits of advanced standing from their PGCE. The module Enhancing Professional Knowledge provides support through the NQT year leading towards the final dissertation.
School Research Leaders route: this is designed for our school-University partnership supporting schools wishing to develop a culture of classroom research by designating and sponsoring future school research leaders.
Coaching and Mentoring: this develops the understanding and skills of those involved in mentoring student teachers or coaching peers through reading, journals and seminars.
Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND): this route is particularly suitable for anyone working in a special-needs context as all assessed work will be based on experience of SEND practice.


Assessment is through coursework assignments to help you acquire greater confidence, enhanced capabilities and different ways of thinking.

All modules carry 30 credits, except the final dissertation of 60 credits. The form of assessment varies and includes written critical reflection, literature review, poster presentation, minor project and essay. All routes culminate in a dissertation on a topic of your choice.


The University of Sussex aims to attract the most talented students to postgraduate study and offers one of the most generous scholarship programmes of any UK university. For full details of our scholarships please visit: http://www.sussex.ac.uk/study/money/scholarships/pgt2016/

Visit the MA in Education page on the University of Sussex website for more details!

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Student Profiles

Chancellor's International Scholarship (2015) - 20+ Awards

25 scholarships are available in the majority of Sussex Schools, and are awarded on the basis of academic performance and potential. The scholarships are offered for one year.[[Type of award]]
Postgraduate taught[[Award amount]]
50% off International Student tuition fee[[Timetable]]
By 1 May: Deadline for all applications to be received
By 19 June: Notification to first choice and short-listed candidates
After 3 July: Notification to successful short-listed candidates if first choice candidates do not take up the scholarship[[Further information]]
Successful applicants
Students accepting a Chancellor's International Scholarship may be required to undertake occasional promotional or support duties for the University of Sussex at times agreed between the student and the University

Value of Scholarship(s)

50% off International Student tuition fee


In order to be considered for a Chancellor's International Scholarship you must meet all of the following criteria:Have applied for and accepted a place to start a Postgraduate taught degree at the University of Sussex (e.g., MA, MSc, LLM, MRes, Postgraduate Diploma, and Graduate Diploma) excluding certain degrees listed on our website.Be assessed as liable to pay fees at the "overseas" (namely the non-EU) rate.Have sufficient funds to meet your tuition fees and living expenses, after taking account of the possible award of a Chancellor's International Scholarship.Students who hold other University of Sussex scholarships will not be eligible for the Chancellors International Scholarship.

Application Procedure

The closing date and time for applications to be received is 1st May 23:59:00 BST prior to the academic year commencing in September. Applications received after 1st May cannot be considered.

When completed, you should return the form by email, post or fax to:

Student Funding Team
Student Life Centre
University of Sussex
Chichester 1, Ci003
East Sussex

Fax Number: +441273873344

Further Information


Entry Requirements

A first- or second-class undergraduate honours degree or equivalent qualification, plus either a minimum of one year of experience of work in teaching, education or a related context, or a degree in this area. For the International Baccalaureate (IB) pathway you must have at least one year of experience working in an IB school.Overseas entrance requirements: View Website

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Recipient: University of Sussex
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