EdD Education

Start date
Contact the School directly
4 - 8 years part-time
Course Type
Postgraduate, Combined research and taught

The EdD Education is ideal for students interested in a rigorous programme that combines the research elements of a PhD with significant taught components.


Please rest assured that we will make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities described. However, it may be necessary to make changes due to significant disruption, for example in response to COVID-19.

Information for future students and applicants

Please note that this course is not recruiting for 2020

To complete this programme you have to gain a total of 540 credits. The programme divides into two parts, a taught element made up of modules totalling 180 credits, and a research thesis which is equivalent to 360 credits. All the taught elements take place on a Friday afternoon and Saturday making this programme ideal for those who wish to study part-time. Research training is provided.

The School of Education offers wide and varied opportunities to undertake research programmes that will support the growth of research skills and build on subject knowledge. With over 100 lecturing and research staff and dedicated research centres, our School of Education is one of the largest research-led schools of education in the UK . More than 82% of its research was rated as ‘internationally excellent’ (3*) or ‘world leading’ (4*) in the 2014 REF

Please view our the Education PhD programme if you wish to complete a research degree by thesis only.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) latest updates and FAQs for future students and offer-holders

Visit our FAQs


Stage one

Compulsory modules

Theoretical Perspectives on Education and Learning

Understanding education policies and practices in global, national and local contexts

Designing and conducting educational research

Philosophy of Social Research

Research Design, Practice and Ethics

Fundamentals in Quantitative Research Methods 

Optional modules

Specialist Studies in Education: Theory, Practice or Policy (at M level only)

Educational Practices for Social Justice and Equity

Stage two

EdD doctoral thesis 50,000 words


Standard fees apply.

The fees shown above are the annual fees for students starting their courses September in 2020. Please note that where courses last more than one year, the annual fees for subsequent years on the course may increase due to inflation. 

Overseas Fees

Please view our Fees for International Students page for further details. 

Learn more about fees and funding

Scholarships and studentships

Scholarships may be available, please view the School of Education Scholarships and Bursaries webpage.

Eligible Doctoral students can now apply for a loan of up to £25,700 to contribute to overall costs. Find out more at https://www.gov.uk/doctoral-loan

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 EU students applying for the 2020/21 academic year

The UK Government has confirmed that EU students will continue to be eligible for 'home fee status' for entry in September 2020, and will continue to have access to eligible financial support via the Postgraduate Masters or Doctoral loan for the duration of their course. For more information visit the gov.uk website.

You can also visit our EU Referendum information page for more information and updates.

Our Standard Requirements

A Masters degree in a relevant subject from a UK university, or an equivalent qualification from a recognised university overseas. In some situations we will accept a good Honours degree (first- or upper second-class) or equivalent. This will depend on the quality and/or originality of your research proposal.

An outline proposal for the research you wish to undertake. The outline proposal should be about three sides of A4 in length, preferably typed, describing the nature of the proposed study. The School attaches great importance to the quality of this outline research proposal, and in some cases you may be asked to rewrite the outline proposal so as to be eligible for the programme.

Learn more about entry requirement

Writing your Research Proposal

Your research proposal should illustrate your ability to plan an independent research study and the relevance of your topic to the research interests and expertise of staff within the School of Education. You need to demonstrate that you understand the field that you plan to research, identify an interesting and original research question, and develop a tentative plan of study. It's critical that your research proposal is written to the guidelines specified below.

Guidelines for the research proposal
Title Title of your proposed research.
Specialism Identify the Department you want to join. You may also identify potential supervisors at this stage if you wish.
Research question Provide an overview of your research question, explaining why it is of academic and/or practical importance.
Objectives  Describe the main objectives of your research, providing details of two or three key aspects.
Literature review Discuss the importance of previous related research and how your own research question might make a useful contribution to the area.
Research techniques State the main research techniques (interviews, case studies, modeling etc.) and data collection procedures you might use.
Timeline Outline your proposed timetable of activities.
References List the works you have cited in your proposal.
Word Limit Your proposal should be no more than 1,500 words, excluding references.

International students

English language support - before your course starts

The University offers Presessional English courses for students who wish to improve their knowledge of spoken and written English in preparation for academic study at the University of Birmingham. Students with conditional offers have the option of attending one of these courses instead of retaking IELTS  

English language support - during your studies

BIA provides free English language services to international students who are currently studying on undergraduate or postgraduate courses at the University of Birmingham.  Services include Open-access English classes, online self-assessment, online materials through CANVAS, email answers to quick questions and individual one to one tutorials.  For a small fee, BIA also offers classes for partners of international postgraduate students and staff, social events including day trips and HOST visits.   

International Requirements

The EdD programme is divided into two phases: the taught phase (180 credits, 2 years) and the research phase (360 credits, normally 4 years). During the taught phase, you will study (a) research methods and (b) specialist subject modules in Education. You will also complete a long piece of writing (the equivalent to a masters dissertation) to help you prepare for your thesis. During the research phase, you will research and write a thesis of approximately 50,000 words on a topic of your choice under the guidance of your supervisor. Progress to the thesis phase is subject to satisfactory completion of the taught phase.

Research Facilities

The School of Education is equipped with the facilities to suit your needs, whatever programme you may be studying with us. As a doctoral researcher you have 24-hour access to work space in our research suite, where there are computer and telephone facilities. You also have access to University libraries and computer facilities, as well as other entitlements such as grants towards conference attendance and photocopying. Many research students work with supervisors in publishing articles and making their work public.


Over the last five years, an impressive 98.3 % of Education postgraduates have been in work and/or further study six months after graduation.

Birmingham’s Education graduates choose to work in variety of education roles in schools and administrative roles in public and private sector organisations. Work in retail, sales and administration are also popular options. Some chose to continue their education and apply for professional courses such as teacher training. This particular programme can enhance your professionalism and provide a basis for high quality decision-making which will benefit the learner, other practitioners and policy-makers. 

What type of career assistance is available to doctoral researchers in Education?

The College of Social Sciences, to which the School of Education belongs, has specially designated careers advisors and careers consultants who can provide guidance for doctoral researchers on career paths, CVs, training opportunities, application and interviews. The University’s central Careers’ Service also runs workshops and offers personally tailored advice and guidance including 1-1 careers advice and 1-1 CV advice. The Career’s Service runs CV writing workshops especially for postgraduates in the College of Social Sciences, giving advice on how to compile CVs for both employment and for academic roles.

The University also has dedicated careers advisors who run workshops and provide networking opportunities with potential employers. These are especially popular with international postgraduate researchers.

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