MA Education

Quick links: Modules | Fees and Funding | Entry Requirements | How to apply

This programme is aimed at students wanting to develop their capacity to critically analyse education policy, practice and discourse. Drawing on the foundation disciplines of History, Philosophy and Sociology, it will offer you the opportunity to draw upon your studies and experience to offer solutions to 'real-world' educational problems.

MA Education - At A Glance

Full Time Route One Year (180 credits)

Education, Policy and Society (20 credits)

Researching Education (20 credits)


Choose four optional modules

Optional Modules
(20 credits each)

Citizenship, Human Rights & the Environment
Curriculum Design in Global Contexts
Cross Cultural Issues in SEND
Education as an International Issue
Educational Practices for Social Justice and Equity
Language, Discourse and Society
Personal & Professsional Skills in Educational Management
SEND: Evaluating Practice

Dissertation (60 credits)

Part Time Route

First Year (60 credits)   Second Year (60 credits)   Third Year (60 credits)

Education, Policy and Society (20 credits)

Researching Education (20 credits)

  Choose three optional modules from the list above     Dissertation
Choose one optional module from the list above        

Download a flier for the MA Education programme (PDF)

Download information on all the postgraduate study programmes in the School of Education (PDF)

This programme will be of interest to those keen to examine existing and alternative forms of Education within the context of social justice. We will examine recent writing, debates and media to discuss and evaluate current theory and research in selected areas of education policy. You will learn how to translate knowledge gained from reading, discussion and writing into a detailed analysis of education policy and practice and consider how this impacts on under-represented or marginalised groups. By the end of the MA, you will have developed the skills and the tools to be able to critically interrogate theoretical and policy debates concerning social and cultural change and assess their implications for creating an education system that is genuinely fair and works for all. 

The programme is offered on a full or part-time basis on campus with some online learning. 

Core modules

  • Education, Policy and Society
  • Researching Education
  • Dissertation

You will also need to choose four optional modules.

Please note that like most Masters programmes, this programme does not confer qualified teacher status (QTS).


Compulsory Modules

Education, Policy and Society

Researching Education


Optional Modules

For part-time students, the optional modules may be taken in either the first or second year.

Citizenship, human rights and the environment

Curriculum design in global contexts

Cross cultural issues in SEND

Education as an international issue

Educational practices for social justice and enquiry

Language, discourse and society

Personal and professional skills in education management

SEND: Evaluating practice 

The modules listed on our website may occasionally be subject to change. For example, as you will appreciate, key members of staff may leave the University and this might necessitate a review of the modules that are offered. Where a module is no longer available, we will let you know as soon as we can and help you make other choices.

Fees and funding

Fees 2018 - 2019


  • Code 163C MA full-time £9,000
  • Code 164C MA part-time £3,000


  • Code 163C MA full-time £16,290
  • Code 164C MA part-time £5,430

The fees shown above are the first year fees for students starting their courses September in 2018 and fees may change in subsequent years.

Learn more about fees and funding

For further information contact the Funding, Graduation & Awards Office via online enquiries. 

Scholarships, Studentships and Loans

Postgraduate Loans for Masters students

A postgraduate loans system for Masters degrees in the UK has been introduced for students. The government-backed student loans provide up to £10,280 for taught and research Masters courses in all subject areas . For more detailed information view our Postgraduate funding page

Scholarships and studentships

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

Entry requirements

Applicants must have:

  • a first degree at 2:1 level or equivalent in a relevant discipline. Consideration will be given to students with lower level qualifications who have equivalent professional experience.
  • For speakers of English as a second language will be required to hold an IELTs 6.5 or equivalent.

International students

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

VISA Requirements

Obtaining a visa can be a lengthy process. Please allow sufficient time to obtain your visa. Find out more about visa requirements

English language support - before your course starts

The University offers Presessional English courses for students whose IELTS score does not meet the entry requirements. If you successfully attend one of these courses you won’t need to retake 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.   

How to apply

Guidance Notes:

References – Please include references with your application.  Your referee should be someone who knows you in a professional capacity, that is they can speak to your academic and/or professional career. Letters from referees must be on headed paper from their institution and from their institutional email address.

Personal Statement – please indicate why you are interested in this particular programme, relevant experience and how it will benefit your future career plans.  Please note that the programme is not suitable for those interested in improving their English language skills. Your personal statement should be no more than 1000 words.

International students requiring visas
Monday 2 July 2018 is the application deadline for international students who require a visa to study in the United Kingdom. We are not able to consider applications for 2018 made after this date. A a new application should be made for September 2019. Applications will reopen for 2019 entry by 21 September 2018.

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

The teaching includes workshops, seminars and tutorials as well as on-line  materials, discussions and group learning through the use of webCT. 

A designated Programme Director will act as your regular point of contact throughout the course of your MA study. In addition, you will also receive regular guidance and feedback on your work from individual Module Leaders/Tutors. Assessment will include written essays, a small independent project, oral presentations and a dissertation on a topic of your choice.

This programme has been specially developed to appeal to existing undergraduates in disciplines such as Education, Sociology and Social Policy and, to practitioners seeking to explore new or alternative approaches to thinking about Education.  Graduates would have the flexibility to use modules to progress to the EdD as well as other research programmes or may wish to consider job opportunities in sectors requiring knowledge of education policy, young people and social justice more broadly.