Inclusion: Universal and Specialist Approaches

This module will consider the broad universal-specialist dimension and how this fits in inclusive educational practice.

Key areas of curriculum, teaching strategy, educator knowledge, assessment and educational placement will be broadly mapped and you will be presented with analyses and evidence in relation to different Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) groupings (as conceptualised in many educational systems), e.g. Autism, dyslexia, hearing impairment / Deaf education, emotional and behavioural difficulties, PMLD, SLD and vision impairment. The analyses form overviews of key aspects of these different groups, but also provide example case studies to explore broader inclusion debates, dilemmas, positions and solutions.

This is a compulsory module for all first year students. 

This module will give you 20 credits at Postgraduate Masters Level/Level 7.

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module, you will be able to:

  • demonstrate a coherent and critical understanding of key debates around inclusive education and special educational needs in relation to curriculum, teaching strategy, and educator knowledge
  • show critical awareness and application of inclusion debates to different specific SEND groupings
  • demonstrate understanding of the definitions and history of several example SEND groupings
  • demonstrate how different SENDs are associated with individuals’ learning and development (and how the causal direction of these associations is debated)
  • apply this learning to your own professional, practical and/or policy context, and be able to critically analyse approaches and decisions in relation to curriculum, teaching strategy, and educator knowledge in relation to SEND.


You will be assessed through a range of work, enabling you to demonstrate your knowledge, skills and understanding of the theory and practical application of the module material. 

You will have one specific formative assessment (where you receive informal feedback, but it does not count towards your module grade) and two components of summative assessment (which are each graded).  

Through this comprehensive range of assessment components, your professional and academic careers will be enhanced.