Social and Applied Sciences

MA Education

Year of entry

This flexible MA course enables you to explore the links between theory, policy and practice in education. It is designed to support professionals working in a range of education settings and is relevant for any career stage.

This flexible Masters course has been designed for education professionals from a wide range of settings and phases (early years, primary, secondary, further and higher education). You may be currently working or taking a break to pursue your studies full-time.

The course encourages and supports rigorous and critical professional development that can have significant impact on all learners’ outcomes and organisational change. It has flexible modules to enable you to explore your interests and concerns relevant to your professional context. As well as the generic course, there are a number of specialist Postgraduate Certificates that can be studied separately or incorporated into the main course, along with a specialist route for those involved in higher education.

There is a thriving postgraduate community with opportunities to attend conferences, study days, workshops and seminars on campus and at other locations.

The course is for anyone with an interest in education, including those currently employed in different education settings or involved in educational work within an organisation or agency. The course can be studied full-time (normally 1 year) or part-time (normally 3 years). The full-time option, may be more suitable if you are taking a break from employment or following on from undergraduate study.

The flexible nature of the course enables you to apply the learning and select areas of focus for assignments to support your professional practice and academic interests.In the final year, the dissertation enables you to research in depth one particular theme of your choice.

If you have recently gained Level 7 credits from previous study (for example as part of your PGCE) you can apply to bring these into the course to count against relevant modules (subject to university approval).

You may also apply to bring credits if you have successfully completed professional development courses with NCTL (National College for Teaching and Leadership) for example NPQH, or a middle leadership course within the last five years.

Specialist Postgraduate Certificates

The following Specialist Postgraduate Certificates are available within the MA Education. Please see the websites for further information or contact us if you would like to know more:

Postgraduate Certificate Mathematics Specialist Teacher (MAST)­ for primary mathematics specialists (60 credits)

Postgraduate Certificate Social and Emotional Learning – concerns social and emotional health and wellbeing in education (60 credits)

Postgraduate Certificate Special Educational Needs Coordination (SENCO) (National Award) – for existing and aspiring SENCOs (60 credits)

We also offer Postgraduate Certificates in different aspects of special educational needs. These can be delivered locally on request, for schools and other organisations. Please note that we do not accept individual applications for these courses, but please contact us to discuss opportunities for setting up a local group. Organisations must recruit a minimum of 15 applicants per cohort.

  • Physical disabilities;
  • Cognition and learning;
  • Autistic spectrum disorders;
  • Social, emotional and behavioural difficulties;
  • Specific literacy difficulties;
  • Speech, language and communication needs.

Postgraduate Certificate credits or other relevant Level 7 credits awarded within the last 5 years may be brought into the main MA Education course, subject to the University’s regulations. Contact us to discuss the opportunities available.

Specialist MA Education pathway

The MA Education (Academic Practice) is a part-time pathway that follows on from the Postgraduate Certificate in Academic Practice, for those working in higher education.

The following themes run through the whole course:

  • Education research, theory and professional knowledge;
  • Education policy and its implications for practice;
  • Reflective practice and professional development;
  • Enquiry and evidence-based practice;
  • Creativity and innovation in education;
  • Leadership, advocacy and action research;
  • Values, nature and purpose of education;
  • Contemporary international perspectives and cultural diversity;
  • Sustainability, inclusion and globalisation. 

In the part-time course, you will normally study three 20 credit modules per year for two years, followed by the 60 credit dissertation in Year 3, to comprise the full MA Education. In the full-time course you will normally study two 20 credit modules per term with the dissertation alongside. International students normally study the full­-time course.

The module titles are listed below.

All of the modules carry Teaching and Learning Academy (TLA) recognition.  

  • Critical reflection in professional practice (MTLA) (20 credits);
  • Enquiry and evidence in professional practice (MTLA) (20 credits);
  • Reading the changing policy landscape (MTLA) (20 credits);
  • Learning theories (MTLA) (20 credits);
  • Issues in mentoring, coaching and critical friendship (MTLA) (20 credits);
  • Critical theory and evidence ­informed practice (MTLA) (20 credits);
  • Negotiated module – on a focus of your choice (MTLA) (20 credits);
  • Evaluation and research methods and dissertation (MTLA) (60 credits).

The sessions are held at our Canterbury campus. For the part-time course the sessions are run in the evenings from 6-­9pm. Each module consists of six taught sessions and the dissertation is individually supervised following three taught sessions on research methods.

All MA Education Modules carry the additional award of membership of the Teaching and Learning Academy (MTLA).  You will be entitled to use the suffix  MTLA after your name and will have personal use of the Teaching and Learning Academy’s logo. When you successfully accumulate MTLA awards you are awarded a Fellowship of the Teaching and Learning Academy (FTLA). Although you will have to register online with the TLA, there are no additional costs for the award of MTLA as this is part of the Canterbury offer and built into the selected credits awarded for each module.


The NQT Accreditation Scheme is aimed at all Newly Qualified Teachers beginning their induction year and continuing their early professional development. Linking closely to the core standards, the scheme enables active involvement and opportunities to continue improving professional knowledge and practice alongside critical reflective analysis.

Newly Qualified / early career teachers  can use our NQT / early career module to start Master’s level study or to add to existing Level 7 credits. This single module normally runs from November to June, to allow plenty of time to support critical reflection and development of your professional practice.

You will attend three Saturday sessions spaced throughout the induction year, at a gentler pace than our other modules to take into account the challenges of your first year in teaching. Successful completion leads to 20 Level 7 credits. You can then continue with Masters study, with opportunities to build in other recent and relevant credits awarded within the last 5 years (e.g. from PGCE).

The part-time course is normally studied alongside full­-time or part-­time employment as a teacher, lecturer or in other education settings, while full­time students often use this opportunity to enhance employability or change direction.

Your promotion prospects and performance at interview are enhanced not only by the Master’s qualification itself but also by discussing interesting and valuable research in progress and by showing confidence in understanding contemporary issues in education.

We have a wide network of alumni who may continue with postgraduate study on our popular EdD course or a PhD, contribute to Masters courses as associate staff and offer expert support to colleagues engaging in Masters study and school-based research. Many are involved in mentoring and coaching in professional settings and may progress into new senior leadership roles.


2017/18 tuition fees for this course

Certificate Stage £2,215 N/A
Diploma Stage £2,215 N/A
MA Stage £2,350 N/A
Full-time, full MA  £6,780 £11,500

Tuition fees for all courses which last more than one academic year are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

There will not be an annual inflationary increase for this course except where a student should take a break from studying the course for a period of one or more academic years.

Students remain on the fee structure which was in place for each stage of this course when they commenced their studies, unless they have taken a break for a period of one or more academic years.

Government loans of up to £10,000 are available for some postgraduate Master’s courses for students starting their course from 1 August 2017.  Loans are subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria. 

The rules around course eligibility mean that in some cases it may depend on how you are studying (full-time or part-time) as to whether you can apply for a postgraduate loan.  To check whether your course is eligible, you can contact the Student Fees Team – email: or call: 01227 923 948

Further information can be found on the University’s postgraduate taught student webpages.

Students may self-fund their course or a sponsor may fund or part-fund. Bursaries, scholarships and fee discounts may also be available.

Further information

**Overseas fee scholarships may be available. See further information about funding and scholarships or contact the International Office.

Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet.

Costs applicable to all students

Text books Own purchase text books
Travel to other sites Where travel to other sites is required, this will be payable by the student
Library Fees and Fines Where students fail to return loaned items within the required time they will be responsible for the cost of any library fees and fines applicable
Printing & Photocopying The cost of printing and photocopying undertaken by students to support their individual learning are payable by the student
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by the student

General principle policy

The University’s general principles policy for additional course fees are set out here

CategoryIncluded in the tuition feeAdditional cost to student
Field trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) No, if the trip contributes to the course as an optional module. Yes if the trip is optional.
Travel and accommodation costs for placements  No

Travel and accommodation costs for professional placements within the Education and Health & Wellbeing Faculties.

Travel and accommodation costs for other work placements. 
Text books No Own purchase text books.
DBS / Health checks No Yes
Professional Body registration No Yes
Travel to other sites (e.g. travel to swimming pool for lessons) No Yes
Clothing / Kit Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons. Yes, where the clothing is kept by the student and not essential for health and safety reasons.
Learning materials Essential learning materials (excluding text books) in connection with the course. Additional materials beyond the standard provision essential for the course or where the costs are determined by the student’s area of interest and the outputs are retained by the student.
Library fees and fines No Yes
Printing and photocopying No Yes
Social events No, unless the event forms an essential part of the course. Yes, unless the event forms an essential part of the course.
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student.

The course is normally delivered through group seminars and lectures, one to one tutorials, workshops and activities, enquiry and guided independent study. Individual support, including feedback on draft writing, is provided via email, telephone, or face to face and this can be arranged at distance (e.g. through Skype) where appropriate. There are plenty of opportunities for enquiry in your own workplace to support your professional practice, if you are in employment whilst on the course. Online resources and facilities are available through the virtual learning environment and blended learning is used where appropriate. You can join the thriving postgraduate community for conferences and study days in the library at various times during the year and there is a strong element of peer support.

We recognise the pressures experienced by those studying whilst working and there are university systems and processes to support your progress through the course.

Your learning is assessed by written papers, portfolios and reflective learning journals, depending on the modules studied, and the final dissertation. These are submitted and marked online. Each 20 credit module assignment is 4,000 words or equivalent. The dissertation is 15-18,000 words.

You will normally need a good honours degree to enter a Master's level course. However, it is recognised that some applicants may not meet these standard requirements, yet may be desirable candidates with other appropriate skills and knowledge. In this case you may be offered the opportunity to complete an orientation module or a portfolio to demonstrate your ability to work at Level 7. Applicants may be asked to attend an interview.

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

If you have recently gained Level 7 credits from previous study (for example as part of your PGCE) you can apply to bring these into the course to count against relevant modules (subject to university approval).

You may also apply to bring credits if you have successfully completed professional development courses with NCTL (National College for Teaching and Leadership) for example NPQH, or a middle leadership course within the last five years.

If you wish to apply to APL credits please complete an APL application form when you apply for a place on the MA Education in order for your APL to be considered.

Download an APL application form here and return to

Applications for this course can be completed online.

For further information, please read our guidance on how to apply online.

For further information or to speak to someone about this course please contact us.


Tel: 01227 782486


Fact file


  • 1 year full-time or 3 years part-time


  • Sept 2017

Entry requirements

  • Evidence of successful completion of study at Higher Education Level 6 (equivalent to Year 3 of an undergraduate degree programme).
  • Students must have current or recent experience of working in education settings and will normally have access to such a setting for practitioner research, particularly for the dissertation.



Last edited 09/02/2018 14:10:00

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Last edited: 09/02/2018 14:10:00