Education - MA

  • Level: Postgraduate Taught
  • Starting: September 2020
  • Study mode: Full Time, Part Time
  • Location: City South

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Are you a teacher, lecturer or trainer? Are you keen to boost your professional qualifications and knowledge? Or are you simply interested in the field of education? If so, this MA Education course is for you.

What's covered in the course?

Highly flexible, this course can be studied alongside your job through our part-time route. Our Education Master’s framework allows you to choose your own path by selecting the core modules, area of specialisation and optional modules, that way you can tailor your study to suit your needs and areas of interest.

The award you receive upon graduating depends on both your existing qualifications, and the combination of modules that you choose to study. You'll do this by studying some core modules and others which you negotiate with your tutor and the programme leader for your pathway.

The modules available explore current issues in education, leadership and management, change and improvement, as well as a flexible portfolio, reflection and research opportunities, leading to a final dissertation. Depending on the modules you take, you may be able to graduate with a specific pathway named on your degree.

The qualifications available are:

However, we can facilitate awards in other specialist areas of study including:

  • Childhood Studies
  • Conductive Education (in collaboration with the National Institute for Conductive Education)
  • Early Years Leadership
  • Leadership and Management
  • Mentoring and Coaching
  • Youth and Community Education

If you are interested in these awards please email Louise.Lambert@bcu.ac.uk

Why Choose Us?

  • This recognised qualification will help you to meet a variety of Continuing Professional Development requirements, such as senior/executive leadership in schools

  • We’re proud of our high employability rates, with 98 per cent of the School’s postgraduate students in employment or further study six months after their course (DLHE survey results 14/15)

  • If you're thinking of changing your career for a move into teaching please be aware that this course doesn't lead to qualified teacher status.

  • You can use evidence of previous study or relevant experience to claim Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

  • You'll be able to develop professional knowledge, skills and understanding in your practice, which will support you to offer consistently excellent teaching.

  • You can use this course to put you at the forefront of professional practice in your specialist field or subject. This will enable you to help your students to succeed.

This course is open to International students

Speak to an expert

If you’ve got any questions about the course, we’d love to hear from you. Please email the Course Director: Louise Lambert.

Email Course Director

Alternatively, you can register for our next postgraduate open day.

New £10,906 postgraduate loans

You may be able to take advantage of the government’s plans to make loans of up to £10,906 available for postgraduate study.

More about postgraduate loans

Entry Requirements

UK students
Essential

Applicants should have a degree or equivalent qualification, or professional experience that equates to degree level.

All suitably-qualified candidates will normally be interviewed and selection will be based on ability to benefit from and contribute to the course of study.

Exemption from some modules may be granted for appropriate prior learning, including credits gained on a PGCE course.

We welcome applications from mature students and from members of communities traditionally under-represented in higher education.

International students
Essential

If you are an international applicant you must provide us with a copy of your Good Conduct certificate as you may undertake supervised visits during the course.

International Students

Entry requirements here

International Students

Don't meet our entry requirements? You could apply for courses at our International College.

Apply now

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
MA Sep 2020 FT 1 year £6,400 per year
PT 2-4 years
TBC

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
MA Sep 2020 FT 1 year £12,800 per year

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. The University reserves the right to increase fees in line with inflation based on the Retail Prices Index or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament up to a maximum of five per cent.

Personal statement

Students are required to submit a personal statement as part of their application for this course.

Your postgraduate personal statement is going to shine a light on your personal experience, academic success, personal skills and any other factors that will support your application for further study.

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

Your passion and motivations

Studying a postgraduate course usually means you want to specialise in something. So what’s driving you?

Why this course?

Show that you’ve researched the course offering. What is it about this particular course that appeals to you? Is it the lecturers? The modules? Etc.

What makes you a good postgraduate candidate?

Tutors want to know that you can handle postgraduate study, so show them how your undergraduate experiences or work life has equipped you for a more advanced level of study. Key areas to address are research and group work but this can vary depending on your chosen course.

Relevant academic or work experience

Add anything relevant that relates back to your chosen course and shows how your skills will contribute towards your learning. What extra-curricular activities have you taken part in? What awards have you won? What employment or voluntary experience do you have that has helped you develop transferable skills? How do these specifically relate to the course you are applying for?

You should also mention your future plans and how a postgraduate qualification fits in. Try to look beyond your postgraduate study – do you plan to jump straight into a specific career or follow your studies with a research degree? Lastly, use plain, professional English and, where possible, utilise the language of your chosen industry.

Get more information on writing personal statements

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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.

Financial Support

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

Please be aware to access a postgraduate student loan you will need to study 180 credits. 

Therefore, you will not be able to carry forward credits from any prior learning at level 7. 

Core Modules

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 100 credits):

Introduction To Masters Level Study
20 credits

This module focuses on your transition to level 7 work. This focus on transition is important because although at first glance a typical taught Masters programme can look very similar to its undergraduate equivalent there are a number of important differences, such as the greater emphasis on your ability to undertake independent, self-directed study. This is not just true of the dissertation project that concludes a typical Masters programme; it is also the case for all taught units, which will expect you to prepare for assignments by independently researching your particular areas of interest and experience for summative assignments.

Masters Level Research
20 credits

Doing a Master’s degree involves many skills, which will be familiar from an undergraduate programme of study; however, there are some crucial differences. This core module is designed to introduce you to the principles of educational research at Masters level encouraging you to build on your experiences of conducting independent research.

The module covers everything you need to know in order to conduct research at Masters Level effectively. This includes ensuring that you can plan research that complies with HELS ethical considerations create a literature review, complete with a comprehensive and accurately cited reference list and demonstrate a critical understanding of methodologies.

Dissertation
60 credits

The Dissertation module is the culmination of your Masters programme. It provides you with the opportunity to develop a systematic understanding of research in relation to your chosen area, and to develop your professional practice through the processes of educational research. You will be encouraged to use self-direction and originality in pursuing your development focus through this independent piece of independent research.

The module provides you with opportunities to act autonomously in designing and planning a Masters level enquiry; to investigate the relationships between theoretical, practical and research knowledge; and to consider the actual and potential impact on educational practice.

Your chosen development focus for the module will be based on your personal, professional and/or organisational needs and priorities. It may build on work carried out in earlier modules, or address an entirely different or new aspect of professional practice.

Optional Modules

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete at least 80 credits from the following list of OPTIONAL modules:

While all core modules are guaranteed to run. Optional modules will vary from year to year and the published list is indicative only. If you are interested in a specific module please contact the Course Director, Louise Lambert

Coaching and Mentoring
20 credits

This module aims to support you to become an ethical and critically reflexive practitioner, able to operate effectively as a coach or mentor in a range of different educational settings.

In this module you will be encouraged to think critically and increase your awareness of issues in adult learning and development that impact directly on coaching and mentoring practices. You will be encouraged to integrate your prior work and life experiences with the theoretical concepts underpinning coaching and mentoring discussed on the module. You will use relevant theories effectively to relate your understanding to the skills and approaches necessary to develop professionally as a coach or mentor in a variety of working contexts.

Critical Issues in Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
20 credits

For this module you will examine the societal issues of class, gender, race, sexuality, age and disability, with an emphasis on the equality, diversity and Inclusion agenda in educational policy and practice. You will engage in a critical and challenging exploration of the principles informing equality, diversity and inclusion across the education sector in the UK and internationally.

The module will cover topics such as historical perspectives on inclusion and diversity, equality rights movements, social/historical origins of inequality and innovative inclusive practices in education. You will consider how social constructions and policy trajectories around equality, diversity and inclusion can lead to potential educational barriers for many groups in society. The module will also focus on legal rights and obligations with regard to equality, diversity and inclusion in professional educational practice, as well as organising effective inclusive learning environments and how to personalise learning for different groups of learners with diverse needs and backgrounds.

Critical Pedagogies
20 credits

This module provides an opportunity to explore and understand the contributions of key thinkers in critical pedagogy. It will also provide an opportunity to explore and debate critical pedagogical issues such as critical literacies, -, issues of identity, agency and power, critical discourse analysis and dialogical teaching.

You will examine the relationship between these theories and teaching and learning practices across a variety of educational settings and contexts.

Curriculum Matters
20 credits

It is very important that educational professionals are able to critique their practice in terms of the historical traditions of their subject and the curricula that support it. This module is designed to equip students with a critical perspective, informed by knowledge, understanding and skills to analyse critically the ways in which curricula is led and managed across educational settings. To this end it explores how curriculum design influences the processes of learning and teaching, as well as educational outcomes for learners.

Developing Partnerships and Collaborative Working
20 credits

Partnership and collaborative working with business, industry and employers, other stakeholders, is increasingly a part of the modern educational landscape across all sectors for a variety of reasons, operating in a variety of ways. For example, consider multi-agency working in schools, information sharing and partnership with external agencies to support learners with special needs or the ways in which further and higher education institutions work with industry around employability.

Dimensions of Childhood and Youth
20 credits

This module offers a critical and interdisciplinary, integrated practice approach to childhood and youth studies. During the module you will cover childhood and youth issues relating to your own practice, which could include family; law; children’s rights; childhood as a social construct; children’s participation in society and the issue of children’s voice and multi-cultural childhoods, within a national and worldwide context.

Fundamentals of Business and Social Enterprise
20 credits

In this module you will learn about the fundamentals of business and social enterprise, business ethics, marketing and financial considerations, businesses and social enterprises functions and contemporary issues in social enterprise. This will allow you to develop your critical skills and personal strengths further your knowledge of good business management.

The aim is to support you in developing proposals for small business and social enterprises development towards a career and explores each of these two strands progressively, whilst maintaining a holistic view of business within various contexts.

Institutional Effectiveness and Change Management
20 credits

In this module approaches to institutional effectiveness and improvement in education and how they are reflected in national educational policy agendas will be discussed. Cross-national education models for institutional effectiveness and change management used in schools, further and higher Education institutions will be critiqued and evaluated.

International and Comparative Education
20 credits

This module will enhance your awareness of education systems, traditions and issues in a number of countries, helping you to understand the relationships between education and other social phenomena by introducing the concepts and skills needed for systematic comparison. This programme will help you to gain a rigorous multidisciplinary grounding in the comparative analysis of education and society, deepening their understanding of contemporary issues in education in many parts of the world.

Urban and Community Education
20 credits

Urban and community education represent some of the most exciting and dynamic fields in education today. In this module we bring multiple perspectives to the study of urban schooling and community education. The module focuses on the ways broad structural factors - such as poverty, race relations, and globalisation - influence the conditions of education in urban and community settings and in how students, families, educators, and community members experience policies and practices educational in urban schools, further education colleges and higher education institutions, as well as community educational organisations such as non-profits, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), and advocacy organisations. You will be encouraged to explore the social context of urban education, especially the social, economic, political, and historical factors that shape city classrooms, schools, and communities.

Professional Enquiry
20 credits

This module, Professional Enquiry, forms an introduction to active examination of professional practice in the workplace and a reflective approach to personal development. It provides a foundation for future study modules and enables you to develop practice-based enquiry skills. Increasing importance is placed on evidence-based enquiry to inform professional development in education, most recently in The Carter Review of Initial Teacher Training (ITT). 

Policy, Politics and Practice
20 credits

This module explores the politics and historical trajectories of education and education policy. It draws on concepts from the social sciences such as the state, globalisation, neo-liberalism, discourse, policy cycle, convergence, policy learning and policy borrowing and considers the ways in which they impact on education practices (including assessment, teaching and learning etc.) across the different sectors.

Assessment
20 credits

The place and role of assessment in education today is highly significant. Assessment is not only concerned with grading and marking learners, it also serves an evaluative function for ways in which schools, colleges, universities, and other learning sites can be evaluated. This module is designed to equip students with a critical perspective, informed by knowledge, understanding and skills to analyse critically the ways in which uses and purposes of assessment function across a range of educational settings.

The Transformative Special Needs Teacher
20 credits

This module considers how, in order to be a successful pedagogue an understanding of self is as crucial as an understanding of the learner. This module will move you into a deeper level of professional self-reflection and provide a framework to help you to challenge your daily work practices to support transforming special needs pupils/students towards their full potential for learning.

There will be a strong theory-practice link serving to guide you towards a critical understanding of your daily classroom practice and skills as a transformative teacher.

Leadership and Management
20 credits

This module will consider leadership and management definitions, values, theories, strategies and styles and their impact on the performance of others and on teaching and learning; the relationships and differences between leadership and management.

It will examine the role of legislation, policy, guidance and local/national frameworks in relation to educational leadership across a range of setting.

Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Policy and Practice
20 credits

This module looks at the identification, assessment and provision for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).

You will be introduced to a range of issues related to social, emotional and behavioural difficulties as we examine national and local policies in relation to definitions, legislation and guidance documents. You will develop your understanding of the concept SEND.

Dynamic Model of Supervision in Special Education (Conductive Education)
20 credits

This module is concerned with adapting and applying professional skills and underpinning understandings to new working contexts which is a cardinal feature of the development of professionalism. It aims to provide you with a broad and analytical experience of the role of the supervisor within special educational settings. The skills developed through the module will be applicable to working with any special needs learner and will reflect the responsive and dynamic approach to the learning process generally. This module will enhance your skills in working with teaching assistants and other colleagues within a team.

Conductive Education for Adults (Conductive Education)
20 credits

Historically Conductive Education has been delivered mainly to children with cerebral palsy and although the adult based work is increasing many conductors do not feel fully trained to work in this field. This module is, therefore designed to enable qualified conductors holding a BA Hons in Conductive Education (CE) or equivalent qualification to specialise in working with adults with Parkinson’s, multiple sclerosis, and stroke.

Reflecting on the Workplace
20 credits

This module forms an introduction to the processes and importance of active reflection around educators’ and educational managers’ professional practices in the workplace. It promotes the importance of reflexivity for educational professionals by asking you to reflect upon how key critical incidents in your working life can be illustrative of wider educational practices and principles.

APEL
20 credits

In-line with the TMF framework philosophy this module is a level 7 optional module, situated within a flexible framework that aims to meet the specific academic needs of individual practitioners. A blended learning approach is taken in accord with the University’s learning and teaching strategy and the programme’s philosophy and aims.

APEL
40 credits

In-line with the TMF framework philosophy this module is a level 7 optional module, situated within a flexible framework that aims to meet the specific academic needs of individual practitioners. A blended learning approach is taken in accord with the University’s learning and teaching strategy and the programme’s philosophy and aims.

Our full-time course starts in September each year and our part-time courses start in September and January each year. We'll offer you a structured route tailored to your professional needs. During your studies you'll gain valuable skills, knowledge and understanding relevant to the educational context you chose to study.

Your pattern of attendance will be determined by the pathway you chose and whether your course is full-time or part-time. However, a 20 credit modules typically involve at total of 200 study hours, made up of:

  • Tutor contact: 20 hours
  • Faculty-based directed tasks: 50 hours
  • Independent study time (student-led): 130 hours

Again, these hours may vary between modules and pathways and the number of participants choosing to study particular modules.

Further study

Once you've graduated from this course, you could decide to do further research.

We have a thriving research programme. Your options include studying for a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) or a Professional Doctorate in Education (EdD) qualification.

We welcome enquiries from teachers who want to do research into any aspect of education practice or policy, whether this is related to early years, primary, secondary or higher education or lifelong learning.

Enhanced Employability Skills

This course will give you a foundation for a career in many different educational settings, both public and private, in the UK or abroad.

It's also suitable if you want to change career direction. This is because it provides a comprehensive international overview of teaching, learning and educational systems - although it doesn't give you Qualified Teaching Status (QTS).

You'll develop important transferable skills in scholarly studies, research skills and practice. These will prove useful when you find yourself working as part of a team, or having to handle lots of data.

The master’s programmes within this framework aim to prepare you to become a creative, confident, technologically-competent and forward-looking individual who has developed the skills of research, reflection and critical evaluation and is aware of the local, national and global themes, issues, policies, ideology and philosophy that effect professional practice within your chosen field.

The development of autonomous professionals is central and participants should be in a position to analyse, synthesise and evaluate information from diverse sources in order to inform their professional development. They should also be able to evaluate critically current research and advanced scholarship in their discipline and be able to evaluate methodologies and develop critiques of them and, where appropriate, propose new hypotheses. These programmes provide a safe space where you can engage in critical academic enquiry and risk taking. 

In addition to this, you'll develop the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring the exercise of initiative and personal responsibility, decision-making in complex and unpredictable situations, the ability to deal with complex issues both systematically and creatively, make sound judgements in the absence of incomplete data, and communicate their conclusions clearly to specialist and non-specialist audiences.

Graduate Jobs

There's a growing recognition of educational practitioners who have studied at Master's level. Many of our students gain career progression opportunities, having demonstrated enhanced knowledge, skills and confidence.

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:

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International modules

In some modules, international case studies are used to enrich the range of examples studied. This helps to locate educational practice within a wider global context.

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £340 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.

Campus

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.  

Departments

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.

Louise Lambert staff profile

Louise Lambert

Course Director for Masters in Education

Louise Lambert is the course director for the taught MA Education pathways and teaches and supervises across Master’s modules. Her background is in secondary education where she taught English and drama and was a senior leader.

Read Louise's full profile

Dr 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. Her research interests include academic writing, learner development in higher education, participatory research, transition experiences in education, employment literacies, widening participation and social justice, radical methodologies, critical pedagogies, postgraduate teaching and learning.