Education Studies - BA (Hons)

UCAS Code:
Full Time (3 years)
September 2018

This course is now full for 2018/19. You can apply for 2019/20 via UCAS from September 2018.

If you'd still like to apply for September 2018, take a look at some of our other available courses.

Are you interested in teaching, education systems, care or research? Our BA (Hons) in Education Studies will allow you to explore all aspects of education, and subject areas of most interest to you, so that you graduate with plenty of career options in what you love to do.

What's covered in the course?

Studying in our £41 million City South Campus, you will explore concepts such as education and society, equality, diversity, values and policies of the UK education system, as well as educational systems around the world. You will also have lots of opportunities to delve deeper into subjects that matter and are of interest to you too.

You will learn through interactive and engaging lectures, seminars and workshops with guest speakers often stopping by to share their knowledge, combined with our experienced course staff who will be supporting and guiding you every step of the way.

Throughout the course we arrange visits to and welcome guest speakers from organisations including, The Thinktank, Historic England, CBSO, The Newman Brother’s Museum in the Jewellery Quarter. You will also have the opportunity to carry out work placement during year 2 to enhance your skills and experience.

The placement module is a crucial aspect and allows you to merge theory with practice.  You will be encouraged to experience and consider different educational settings though enhancement activities such as volunteering, Careers Week and presentations from external speakers. 

This course is designed to promote independence so that you become more a confident, autonomous, creative lifelong learner and will challenge you to push the boundaries and discover your full potential.

Why Choose Us?

  • Learn in our £41 million City South Campus. You will learn in our stunning campus, with access to state-of-the-art facilities which will inspire and motivate you during your time here
  • Expert staff team - our experienced, passionate and dedicated staff team will guide you through the course to maximise your learning opportunities and future employability
  • Strong industry relationships - we work in partnership with local schools, care leavers support services, art galleries and museums, Birmingham’s virtual school and special schools - which you can benefit from by carrying out work experience and build your own professional relationships with
  • Study abroad - you can choose to study abroad on this course. Students from other education courses have travelled to, and studied in France, Spain and Germany, and you could too!
  • Excellent placement opportunities - placement work is built in to this course to provide you with skills and experience that will prepare you for future employment
  • Unique course - this course is designed to challenge, engage and stimulate your mind to be the best you can possibly be
  • Access to guest speakers - we have close relationships with many expert speakers – another source of knowledge for you to take advantage of

To welcome all new home and EU undergraduate degree students starting in 2018 or 2019, we're giving at least £150 worth of credit to spend in a host of ways, on books and a range of learning materials. Even better, it doesn’t have to be repaid. Terms and conditions apply.

Find out more

This course is open to International students

Entry Requirements

We accept a range of qualifications, the most popular of which are detailed below.

UK students

A minimum of 4 GCSEs at Grade 4 or above (formerly Grade C), at the point of enrolment. These must include English Language and Maths. 

If you do not already have the required GCSEs, (or their equivalent) for entry onto this course, and are not registered to take them, visit Equivalency Testing for further information.

Acceptable Mathematics GCSE Equivalents

  • Adult Numeracy Level 2
  • City and Guilds Level 2 - Numeracy
  • Key Skills Level 2 - Numeracy 

English GCSE is required as no alternatives are accepted 

Download the GCSE equivalencies for this course 

96 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A Levels.

Typical Offers
UK Qualification Requirements 2016/17
GCE A Level/ AS Level 96 UCAS points = CCC
Access to Higher Education Diploma 60 credits including 45 at Level 3, of which 18 Level 3 credits are at merit / distinction  also including GCSE English Language and Maths equivalence if not held separately.
BTEC National Diploma (12-units not including early years) D*D* or combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 96 UCAS points
BTEC Extended Diploma (18-units not including early years) MMM
BTEC Subsidiary Diploma/ National Award (6-units not including early years) D* or combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 96 UCAS points.
International Baccalaureate Diploma 24 points overall
Irish Leaving Certificate 96 points including 4 Higher Level passes. Points will be taken from a maximum of 4 subjects.
Scottish Higher/ Advanced Higher 280 points from a maximum of 4 subjects
Welsh Baccalaureate (core plus options) 96 tariff points combined with other level 3 qualifications to achieve a minimum total of 96 UCAS points.
Other qualifications
If you have a qualification that is not listed in the table please refer to our full entry requirements on UCAS.

Further guidance on tariff points can be found on the UCAS website.
EU/International students
EU/Non-EU (International) Qualifications Requirements 2017/18
IELTS 6.0 overall with 5.5 minimum in all bands
International Baccalaureate Diploma (or equivalent, including internationally accredited Foundation courses). 24 points overall
Country-specific entry requirements and qualifications.


International students who cannot meet the direct entry requirements can begin their degree studies at Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC).

Successful candidates will be required to obtain an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) clearance via the Faculty.

International Students

Entry requirements here

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2018 FT 3 years £9,250 per year Applications Closed

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
BA (Hons) Sep 2018 FT 3 years £12,000 per year Applications Closed

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form and equal opportunities PDF form instead.

If you're interested in applying, please email the course director Amanda French.

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

This course is now full for 2018/19. You can apply for 2019/20 via UCAS from September 2018.

If you'd still like to apply for September 2018, take a look at some of our other available courses in Clearing.

Personal statement

Your personal statement is a highly important part of your application. It gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

Additional costs

We offer a wide range of professionally accredited and vocational courses that require the purchase of, among other things, uniforms, equipment, subscriptions, professional body memberships and DBS checks, and may require you to pay to attend conferences or participate in placements.

The link below provides our estimate of the possible costs associated with key activities on specific courses. Please bear in mind that these are only estimates of costs based on past student experience and feedback. The actual costs to you could vary considerably (either greater or lower than these estimates) depending on your choices as you progress through the course. We set out where we can, based on experience, where these indicative costs are for activities that are optional or compulsory.

All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Find additional costs for your course

Accommodation and living costs

The cost of accommodation and other living costs are not included within your course fees. More information on the cost of accommodation can be found in our accommodation pages.

Whats included in your course fees

Included in your course fees are extensive on-line support, a high proportion of required reading will be readily available and a second year placement.

Loans and Grants

Financial Support

We offer further information on possible undergraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.

Year one

Introduction to Education Studies

This module will encourage you to ask questions about your education.  We all think we know about schools and education but how much do we really know; how far is our knowledge affected by our personal experiences?  There will be an emphasis on developing the study skills needed in higher education. 

Key Educational Thinkers and the Philosophy of Education

This module provides a historical overview of key influential educational thinkers and the philosophic traditions that they draw on.  You will be introduced to a range of philosophical thinking, reading and writing.  For the summative assignment you will relate your understanding of educational theory to your own ideas and opinions.

Creativity, Teaching and Learning Education and Society

Here you will think deeply and critically about creativity and its relationship to educational issues.  You will enquire into a range of educational concepts, such as, ‘deep learning’, ‘critical thinking’ and ‘creative learning’ and gain knowledge of creative learning programmes found in schools/ educational settings in the UK and globally. 


Introduction to International Education

Globalisation will be treated as a theoretical framework through which to examine how educational themes arise within and across national boundaries.  The course examines cross-national issues, such as language and bilingualism, national identity in the curriculum, and international structures.  We will consider the ERASMUS exchange programme opportunities for the second year.

Perspectives on Learning and Development

We will explore theories about human development and learning across a range of biological and psychological perspectives drawn from a variety of disciplines.  Key theories about learning and development such as Behaviourism, Constructivism, Social Constructivism will be discussed, with the focus on how they have been studied and observed in practice.

Year two

Preparing for Research in Education

This module will prepare you for your final research project at level 6.  Coverage will include: an introduction to research methods; consideration of ethical issues for carrying out research within educational settings; planning and identifying appropriate literature.  You will also be supported to identify an appropriate area for research. 

Professional Practice Placement

Placement will be a context in which to examine educational practices.  Your placement could involve anything from working on literacy with Bengali women in a community centre, supporting SEN pupils at a primary school or supporting an art exhibition at a pupil referral unit for excluded secondary school students. 

Investigating and Developing Curriculum

The module will encourage you to explore curriculum development, including content, objectives, processes and assessment.  You will consider alternative educational approaches such as Steiner or Montessori. You will focus on developing your ability to 'read' and produce curriculum materials, practices and policies in the light of the principles and perspectives that inform them.  

Cultures of Schooling

This module is designed to develop your understanding of the education system and its structures in England.  It has as its central theme the changing relationship between the state, compulsory education and its users through the relationship between the UK political system and the UK education system. 

Globalisation, Education and Inequality

This module will explore models, concepts and themes relating to the globalisation of education across different sectors and countries including human rights, citizenship and the role of education.  There is also an emphasis on global diversity.  Students to focus on case studies of education and schooling that highlight the diversity of provision.

Inclusion, Diversity and Special Educational Needs

This module offers a critical and challenging introduction to special educational needs in the context of contemporary understandings of inclusion and diversity in education.  It will cover topics such as: historical perspectives on inclusive education; social models of disability, and developing inclusive practices in education.  

Year three

Individual Practice-based Research

The practice-based research module builds on the research and academic skills acquired at Levels 4 and 5.  The format for your research will depend on the study selected.  Most often it will be a small-scale practice-led enquiry based on your placement experiences. It could also be a desk-based analysis of a contemporary issue. 

Critical Pedagogies

This module extends your understanding of the function and effects of education through the study of a range of perspectives such as critical theory, structuralism, post-structuralism, Critical Race Theory and feminism.  You will examine the relationship between teaching and learning by applying the theoretical perspectives studied.

Educational Policies and Professional Practice

This module will help you to critically evaluate how and why different education practices and policies develop in the ways they do.  Education is highly political and through this module we will examine the politics of decision-making around educational policies and government initiatives. 

Educational Innovations in 21st Century

This module seeks to stimulate debate about the changing nature of society as it is currently and as might be predicted in the future.  During the module you will have the opportunity to use a variety of hardware and evaluate their contributions to learning through reference to analytical and pedagogical frameworks in your written assessment.

Issues of Identity in Education

From a broad interdisciplinary perspective, this module will explore the ways in which intersecting power relations and changing identity formations around demographic categories impact on and inform educational settings.  Demographic categories include gender, race, ethnicity, sexuality, age, class, profession and nationality. 

Course Structure

Year One

We will begin the year with an in-depth induction process. During this time you be introduced to key members of staff, resources and procedures. We will consider what it means to study at undergraduate and time will also be dedicated to team building activities. During the first year you will be introduced to key education philosophy and theorists. Additionally, we will consider a range of perspectives on local and international education. Throughout the year students will take part in seminars, lectures and workshops with the dedicated team and selected guest speakers. Students will be offered theoretical and practice led perspectives to analyse and evaluate. Students will be asked to reflect on their own educational experiences and values.

Year Two

Birmingham City University has an impressive portfolio of partner organisations and the key event in the second year of study will be your placement. Students will be supported in identifying a placement with one of our partners that is developmental, stimulating and that offers preparation for future career paths.

Students will also consider inclusivity, diversity and cultures of schooling. Students will now have a confident and in depth understanding of a range of educational issues. They will now begin to plan their final year research project. Students will be support to understand research methodologies and the importance of ethical considerations.

Throughout the year students will take part in seminars, lectures and workshops with the dedicated team and selected guest speakers. Students will be offered theoretical and practice led perspectives to analyse and evaluate. Students will be asked to reflect on their own educational experiences and values.

Year Three

The key aspect of year three is the individual and independent research project. Using their planning and preparation from year two, students will undertake research into an area of their choice. Tutorials and on-going support with be provided to support successful and ethically secure research.

We will also explore how identities are shaped and re-shaped through educational experiences and structures. Additionally we will consider how education is changing and key innovations that impact on educational organisations.

Throughout the year students will take part in seminars, lectures and workshops with the dedicated team and selected guest speakers. Students will be offered theoretical and practice led perspectives to analyse and evaluate. Students will be asked to reflect on their own educational experiences and values.

Examples of classroom activities

Each module uses a variety of teaching and learning approaches including:

  • workshops
  • conferences
  • lectures
  • seminars
  • guest speakers
  • visits to schools and other educational settings
  • digital technologies

Teaching breakdown

Year 1

55 Scheduled Teaching and Learning MidnightBlue
45 Guided Independent Study RoyalBlue
0 Time on placement LightSkyBlue

Year 2

35 Scheduled Teaching and Learning MidnightBlue
50 Guided Independent Study RoyalBlue
15 Time on placement LightSkyBlue

Year 3

38 Scheduled Teaching and Learning MidnightBlue
58 Guided Independent Study RoyalBlue
5 Time on placement LightSkyBlue

Assessment breakdown

0 Written exams DarkOrange
100 Coursework FireBrick

Overseas Opportunities

The programme hosts students on the Erasmus and Study Abroad programmes from a number of partner Universities from around the world who will study alongside you and facilitate debate about different approaches education. You also have the opportunity of studying in a number of European countries through the partnerships the School of Education & Social Work has already established.

Further studies

Further studies could include PGCE Primary, Post-compulsory Education Training (for work in further education) or an MA in Education.

Number of hours in the classroom per week

Students will have between 12 to 14 hours of taught sessions across the week (Monday to Friday). 

Enhancing employment skills

This course enables you to become a reflective and innovative education academic and practitioner, including the ability to be flexible, to respond to and initiate change and manage a life/ work balance creatively.

Education Studies will provide an excellent preparation for you to work with learners of all ages within the education sector. The commercial and industrial worlds are also very interested in people with knowledge about education and training.

You'll have the knowledge and skills to work in educational and training advisory roles in a range of organisations included businesses, local authorities, non-government organisations, charities, museums, art galleries and libraries.


In the second year of study all students will take a placement of at least eight weeks. This could be in a wide range of educational settings: museums, volunteer schemes, schools, pupil referral units, adult learning centres, hospitals or with educational advisors. 

More about our placement opportunities...


OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.


BCU Graduate+

Through our courses we give you the skills and experience needed to get a head start when applying for jobs. But we offer something extra too – Graduate+.

Our unique programme gives you the chance to develop valuable skills outside of the more formal classroom learning. We award points for Graduate+ activities (including firewalking!) and these can be put towards a final Graduate+ award.

More about Graduate+

Graduate Jobs

At the end of this course students will go on to a range of careers, a sample would be: youth work, teaching, learning mentor, counselling or education advisors.

Links to Industry

Birmingham City University has a diverse portfolio of educational partnerships. Education students will both gain from, and contribute to this.

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

The UK remains one of the world's leading study destinations

The UK remains one of the world's leading study destinations for international students.

The first-class experience offered by universities are reflected in the world’s largest survey of international students. International students are more likely to recommend the UK than any other leading English-language study destination.

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.


BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

The BA (Hons) Education Studies is a great opportunity to study education in its broadest sense. You will consider not only practices and policies in the UK but also globally. Placement in the second year is a fantastic opportunity to put theory into practice and establish your own links with educational settings.

This is a new and exciting course for Birmingham City University – your tutors are experienced practitioners who are committed to ensuring a positive experience for all students.

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities.

As part of these plans, the University's Education provision will join the rest of the Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences at our City South Campus in Edgbaston during 2018.

This is the third phase of the University's project to move all teaching and learning to two campuses, City Centre and City South. By moving our Education provision, we are creating a hub for the provision of public service contracts and professional development at City South Campus and improving the student experience with a stronger sense of community and more consistent support services and facilities.


In addition to classrooms, a lecture theatre, social learning spaces, an open access IT suite and cafe facilities, the new £41 million extension to our City South Campus offers a range of specialist teaching and learning facilities for specific subjects including science, design and technology, drama and physical education.  


All our departmental facilities replicate the school learning environment.

  • Art and Design
  • Design and Technology
  • History
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Religious Education
  • Music
  • Drama

Not only are we investing £41 million in a new building to house the laboratories and teaching spaces needed, but we also plan to open up these facilities to benefit all students and the wider community. This will complement our existing sports facilities, which already provide a base for students to compete in activities ranging from rugby to.

Mary Seacole Library

The Seacole library, based at City South Campus, is one of the UK's largest specialist health education libraries. The facility offers an extensive range of range of information and reference materials set out in a relaxing environment, conducive to studying. There are comfortable seating areas, group study areas, a silent study area and private study rooms.

Computer Facilities

The Seacole building houses a large open access IT Suite which comprises of 96 PCs, printers, photocopiers and scanners. Our PCs utilise the latest Intel i5 core technology, all with:

  • Fast (unrestricted) internet connectivity
  • Ability to save files to USB, DVD & CD
  • Microsoft Office software
  • Research and statistical software
  • Storage space which can be accessed from any PC across the University and from home

Our PCs are also designed to support students who may have difficulties with reading and writing, featuring specialised software with zooming/magnification and screen reading capabilities, which may also be customised for individual student needs.

The IT Suite offers extended opening hours and is supported by a specialist Open Access Assistant during term time. In addition to the open access PCs within the IT Suite, there are 12 networked student PCs available within Seacole library.

Staff Introduction

All tutors teaching on this course are extremely experienced practitioners with diverse and rich educational experiences. All tutors are research active; this research will inform the programme and support students as they develop research skills.

Elaine Matchett

Programme Leader for Education Studies

Elaine's first degree is in English and Education Studies, she completed a PGCE at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne and taught for 12 years in a variety of schools across the West Midlands. Elaine also holds an MA in Social and Cultural Theory and she is currently studying for a PhD looking at the educational experiences of children in care.

Elaine joined BCU in 2010 as a Senior Lecturer in Primary English. She is now fortunate enough to be leading the new Education Studies degree at BCU. Elaine is passionate about Education Studies as a discipline; it affords students the opportunity to fully evaluate the enormous and transformative potential of education.  

Amanda French

Head of Department: Professional Development, Research and Enterprise

Amanda has worked in higher, further, adult education and the voluntary sector for 30 years as a lecturer, writing developer and researcher and is currently employed as Head of Department: Professional Development, Research and Enterprise in the School of Education.

Her PhD in Education: ‘Through a glass darkly”: Lecturers perceptions of Academic Writing’:  was about lecturers’ perceptions of academic writing and writing development practices in higher education. 

Her other research interests include academic writing, learner development in higher education , participatory research with children, transition experiences in education, employment literacies, widening participation and social justice, radical methodologies, critical pedagogies, postgraduate teaching and learning. I have presented on published on these areas nationally and internationally.


Elizabeth Nassem

Dr Elizabeth Nassem


Elizabeth joined Birmingham City University in May 2016. She is a Research Assistant in the Centre for the Study and Practice of Education. She has a Doctorate in Education which she examined where bullying exists in children’s everyday experiences of school.  

Elizabeth has worked in further and higher education as a lecturer and research developer. She has taught subjects such as qualitative research methods, developmental psychology and learning disability. She has also taught in secondary and primary schools. Elizabeth has been a project worker where she supported individuals with learning disabilities and mental health problems to enhance their wellbeing and participate more fully in their community. Elizabeth has developed pupil-led anti-bullying campaigns and counselling to pupils who persistently engage in bullying to refrain from bullying and enhance their well-being.