School Improvement and Educational Leadership MA/Postgraduate Diploma/ Postgraduate Certificate

The School Improvement and Educational Leadership programme is designed for you to make a difference in schools through leadership that is focused on learning. The knowledge and experience you will gain from this programme will place you in an ideal position to inform the future improvement and make a difference to the overall performance of your school. It will help provide you with the foundations to become a leader in school improvement using evidence-based analysis and by challenging current practices.

Course fact file

Type of Course: Continuing professional development, taught

Study Options: Full time, part time

Duration: MA - 1 year full-time, 3 years part-time; PGDip - 1 year full-time, 2 years part-time; PGCert 1 year full-time/part-time

Start date: Contact the School directly

Contact

Professor Peter Davies
Telephone +44 (0)121 414 4820
Email p.davies.1@bham.ac.uk

Programme Administrator

Alison Duggan
Telephone +44(0)121 415 8274
Email pgteducation-enquiries@contacts.bham.ac.uk

Details

The School Improvement and Educational Leadershipprogramme is designed for those who are aiming to make a difference in schools through leadership that is focused on learning. Leadership in schools takes many forms: through school and departmental leadership teams, but also through collaboration between teachers and schools on specific problems in teaching and learning. You will be part of a research-led community which uses and develops evidence-based practice to identify and share approaches which can be shown to make a difference in particular contexts.

The teaching includes workshops, seminars and tutorials and is offered on campus (and by negotiation with school consortia). Classes use a variety of reflective, analytical and enquiry-based activities using journals, qualitative and quantitative evidence of practice in individual schools and school systems. Support is provided through a web based learning environment which includes case studies which are used for preparation tasks as well in workshops. The assignments and dissertation topics reflect students’ individual interests and contexts. 

Core modules include:

  • Understanding School Improvement
  • Using evidence in School Improvement
  • Education Policy and Improving Schools
  • Leadership for School Improvement

Optional modules include (subject to availability):

  • Curriculum Design in Global Contexts
  • Education as an International Issue 
  • Human Rights, Citizenship and the Environment
  • Leading Educational Change
  • Management and Learning in EAL 
  • Personal and Professional Skills in Management 
  • Second Language Learning

Chile Scholarships

This is an international programme which recruits students from around the world as well as from the UK. We welcome applicants from Chile who are applying through CONICYT’s scholarship programme in which the University of Birmingham is participating. Application of the ideas and evidence about School Improvement and Educational Leadership in a Chilean context will be addressed in the programme.

Specific information for students who wish to apply from Chile may be found on our International Pages.

pdficonsmallDownload a summary flier for the School Improvement and Educational Leadership programme (PDF, 79KB)

Why study this course

This programme is designed for people who are aiming to make a difference in schools through leadership that is focused on learning. Leadership in schools takes many forms: through school and department leadership teams, but also through collaboration between teachers and between schools on specific problems in teaching and learning. You will be part of a research-led community which uses and develops evidence-based practice to identify and share practice which can be shown to make a difference in particular contexts.

The programme ains to:

  • Promote critical engagement and fulfilling learning environments by developing teacher effectiveness and professional identity. 
  • Develop communities of scholarship through which educational partnerships work to improve schooling and schooling policy. 
  • Develop capacity for rigorous and critical analysis of evidence in improving schools.

Modules

Programme Information

Course codes
Full time 9162 Part time 9163

There are three 'M' levels associated with the programme in School Improvement and Educational Leadership.

Masters

You need to achieve 180 credits to be awarded a Masters degree. These credits are achieved by passing all four core (compulsory) modules, two optional modules and a dissertation (which is worth 60 credits).

Postgraduate Diploma

You need to achieve 120 credits to be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma. These credits are achieved by passing all four core (compulsory) modules and two optional modules.   

Postgraduate Certificate

You need to achieve 60 credits to be awarded a Postgraduate certificate. These credits are achieved by passing three modules chosen from the core and optional modules.

Core Module Details

Understanding School Improvement (core module) (20 Credits)
Module code: 1123963

Schooling is about much more than attainment. It affects students’ sense of where they fit into society and the role they have in shaping its future. It affects their capacity for learning and the way they think about themselves as learners. It affects their aspirations towards work and education. So how does leadership, the organisation of schooling and the conduct of teaching affect each these outcomes? An improving school must be improving students’ learning. So how do changes in leadership and organisation affect the way that students approach their learning and how can leaders best support improvements in teaching? What is the evidence to show that one way of teaching or one method of organising teaching is better than another? How do different theories of learning help us to understand the effects of different ways of teaching and to identify what is critical in a way of teaching and what is not?

Leadership for School Improvement (core module) (20 credits)
Module code: 1105668

The study of leadership in different contexts provides a set of distinctions (e.g. between ‘transactional’ and ‘transformational’ leadership and between ‘rational’ and ‘emergent’ strategy) which can be useful for practice in schools. But to really make a difference we need to go beyond the jargon in finding ways to motivate and develop others whilst fostering a sense of community and clear purpose. So what is the evidence to show us how this happens in practice?

Using evidence in school improvement (core module) (20 credits)
Module code: 1123964

Teachers are expected to use evidence to review the progress of individual pupils, staff and whole schools. Making the most of this evidence requires us to have a sharp understanding of what it shows and what it does not. The programme will develop capacity for critical use of the data (such as value added measures, inspection reports and budgets) and international research evidence (qualitative and quantitative) which can inform teaching and school organisation.

Education Policy and Improving Schools (core module) (20 credits)
Module code: 1123965

Differences in policy towards schools – between countries and over time – come in many forms. There are changes in the nature of ‘accountability’ through inspection and league tables. There are changes in the workforce such as through an increase in teaching assistants and ‘inter-professional working’. What are the arguments for and against such variations in policy and what does the evidence show us?

Optional Modules (20 credits module option)

  • Teacher Development through lesson planning, teaching and review
  • Classroom learning and behaviour
  • Special studies in education

Fees and funding

Fees Home/EU 2014-2015

  • Code 9166 PGCert full time £1,980
  • Code 9170 PGCert part time £1,980
  • Code 9165 PGDip full time £3,960
  • Code 9164 PGDip part time £1,980 each year
  • Code 9162 MA full time £5,940
  • Code 9163 MA part time £2,970 each year

Fees for part-time programmes are based on students studying 60 credits per year.

The fees shown above are annual fees for students starting their courses September in 2014. Please note that where courses last more than one year, the annual fees for subsequent years on the course may increase due to inflation.

Fees Overseas 2014-2015 

  • Code 9166 PGCert full time £4,555
  • Code 9170 PGCert part time £4,555
  • Code 9165 PGDip full time £9,110
  • Code 9164 PGDip part time £4,555 first year; £4,400 second year
  • Code 9162 MA full time £13,665
  • Code 9163 MA part time £4,555 first year; £4,400 second year; £4,250 third year

Fees for part-time programmes are based on students studying 60 credits per year. 

The fees shown above are annual fees for students starting their courses September in 2014. Please note that where courses last more than one year, the annual fees for subsequent years on the course may increase due to inflation.

Learn more about fees and funding

Scholarships and studentships
Scholarships may be available. International students can often gain funding through overseas research scholarships, Commonwealth scholarships or their home government. More details may be found on the international scholarships page

For further information contact the School directly or the Student Funding Office via online enquiries

Entry requirements

Please refer directly to the School of Education entry requirements webpage

International students

We accept a range of qualifications, our country pages show you what qualifications we accept from your country.

English language requirements

You can satisfy our English language requirements in two ways:

How to apply

 

When clicking on the Apply Now button you will be directed to an application specifically designed for the programme you wish to apply for where you will create an account with the University application system and submit your application and supporting documents online. Further information regarding how to apply online can be found on the How to apply pages

Apply now

Contact

Professor Peter Davies
Telephone +44 (0)121 414 4820
Email p.davies.1@bham.ac.uk

Programme Administrator

Alison Duggan
Telephone +44(0)121 415 8274
Email pgteducation-enquiries@contacts.bham.ac.uk

Learning and teaching

The programme is offered as part of the School of Education’s work with partner schools. There is a strong emphasis on relating theory and evidence to practice. The teaching includes workshops, seminars and tutorials. Classes use a variety of reflective, analytical and enquiry-based activities using journals, qualitative and quantitative evidence of practice in individual schools and school systems. Support is provided through webCT which includes research discussions and case studies which are used for preparation tasks as well in workshops. Assignment and dissertation topics reflect students’ individual interests and contexts.

Contact

Professor Peter Davies
Telephone +44 (0)121 414 4820
Email p.davies.1@bham.ac.uk

Programme Administrator

Alison Duggan
Telephone +44(0)121 415 8274
Email pgteducation-enquiries@contacts.bham.ac.uk

Related staff

Employability

This programme is designed to provide a firm basis in theory and evidence for new and aspiring leaders in education. This leadership may be exercised in schools, colleges or administrating authorities. Leadership may be in form of direct responsibility for organisational strategy and practice or it may come in form of leading professional development.

Contact

Professor Peter Davies
Telephone +44 (0)121 414 4820
Email p.davies.1@bham.ac.uk

Programme Administrator

Alison Duggan
Telephone +44(0)121 415 8274
Email pgteducation-enquiries@contacts.bham.ac.uk