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Managing Community Practice (MA)

Course Description

*Individual modules are also available as short courses, which can be combined into the large qualification

This programme provides an opportunity for a range of professionals whose role includes engaging with communities to undertake related advanced study and professional development to develop their career further. It is ideal for those wishing to develop their understanding of the management and policy context of this work at a postgraduate level, especially for those who already have (or do not require) a professional qualification in Community and Youth Work. This might include those practising in community development, housing associations, community health, community enterprise, neighbourhood regeneration, community arts, and professionals in a range of statutory, voluntary and private sector posts that have an element of community involvement and engagement; for example, economic development, planning, policing, transport, and voluntary sector development.

The programme attracts practitioners from a wide range of contexts and countries, enabling learning in an internationally-comparative context. Core modules enable students to explore and develop their understanding of management, policy and practice in this field, as well as learn core research methods skills and carry out their own piece of advanced research. Students have a choice of optional modules to enable more focused study in their own areas of interest.

Course structure

Typical modules outlined below are those that were available to students styuding this programme in previous years.

Core Modules

-Community Policy and Practice (15 credits)
-Professional and Personal Development (30 credits)
-Management in Community Settings (30 credits)
-Practitioner Research and Dissertation (60 credits)

Optional Modules

Typical modules outlined below are those that were available to students styuding this programme in previous years.
-Community Analysis (15 credits)
-Crime, Justice and the Sex Industry (30 credits)
-Drugs, Crime and Society (30 credits)
-Gender, Violence and Abuse (30 credits)
-Policy Related and Evaluation Research (15 credits)
-Qualitative Research Methods in Social Science (15 credits)
-Quantitative Research Methods in Social Science (15 credits)
-Youth Policy and Practice (15 credits)

To study the PG Certificate in Managing in Community Practice you will be required to take Community Policy and Practice and Management in Community and Youth Work plus one 15 credit optional module.

To study the PG Diploma in Managing Community Practice you will be required to take Community Policy and Practice, Management in Community and Youth Work and Professional and Personal Development, plus 45 credits from the optional modules.

Learning and Teaching

The programme is delivered through a range of lectures, seminars, tutorials, group work, reflective practice seminars, research seminars and study visits.

Within an ethos of Informal Education, our teaching and learning incorporates a range of methods which reflect this and time is allocated to provide a balance between tutor-led and self-directed learning. The programme is taught as part of a group of programmes which attract practitioners from a wide range of contexts and countries, enabling learning in an internationally-comparative context, whilst including a particular focus on UK policy and practice.

Typically, taught sessions provide students with academic input on a particular area of the professional discipline of community work and reflect the diverse range of community settings within which the management of practice takes place. Drawing from relevant literature and legislation and acknowledging the related range of professional skill, competence and understanding, issues are identified for discussion and draw from historical and contemporary contexts. Seminars provide the opportunity for students to discuss and debate the issues, to share ideas and experience, broaden their understanding and test out their knowledge gained through the taught sessions and independent study. Classroom learning provides students with the latest research and critical theory on the subject area.

The MA Managing Community Practice provides the student with a learning opportunity within which they can apply and test understanding, knowledge and skills related to the managerial roles and responsibilities of their practice settings. A critical examination of the relationship of theory and practice is central to this. Core modules are structured to enable students to attend university for teaching on an average of one day per week (part time) or two days per week (full time), so that their study can fit around other commitments that they may have.

The programme is assessed through continual assessment using a range of methods including written assignments, reflective journals, individual and group presentations so there is an expectation that students will undertake independent study to prepare and plan for their classes, through reading relevant literature and legislation, journals and drawing on their current and previous practice experience.

The Community and Youth Work Programme is part of the School of Applied Social Sciences and is significantly involved with the Centre for Social Justice and Community Action at Durham University, as well as being a partner in many collaborative pieces of research and professional practice developments. There are therefore many events and initiatives to which the students are encouraged to attend such as extracurricular training, research seminars and workshops to broaden their understanding and deepen their knowledge of wider issues related to their professional discipline.

Visit the Managing Community Practice (MA) page on the Durham University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Normally an upper second class honours degree (2:1) or equivalent. Where applicants have substantial experience, lower qualifications may be accepted, subject to submission of a written assignment to give evidence of their ability to study at this level. Alternatively, we may suggest you register for an individual module as a short course in the first instance, and use any assignment submitted for that short course to assess your ability to proceed onto a full programme

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