University of Chester

Programme Specification
Education MA
2015 - 2016

Master of Arts

Education

Education

University of Chester

University of Chester

University of Chester campuses;  educational and professional settings

Continuing Professional Development

Part-time

Classroom / Laboratory,

6 years

6 Years

Variable - Variable

X370

No

17a. Faculty

17b. Department

Education & Children's Services Academic and Professional Programmes

National Framework for Higher Education Qualifications

University of Chester

Continuing Professional Development

Tuesday 22nd July 2008

To secure professional learning consistent with a Masters level philosophy, the programme aims to:

1. promote scholarship.

2. cultivate original thinking.

3. facilitate critical reflection.

4. stimulate research and enquiry.

5. influence impact and change.

 


 
· Critically engage with theoretical frameworks and literature
· Harness insights into subject knowledge
· Critically review the ways in which research methodology supports professional enquiry
· Apply critical considerations when undertaking research
· Make effectual use of professional learning to assess impact on practice 


















· Make critical use of research evidence
· Formulate valid conclusions that link theory to practice
· Think independently about essential issues, concepts and ideas

Practical Skills
· Refine the kinaesthetic skills required of, for example, music, drama, D&T and art

Application of Number
· Select and use appropriate research methodology, methods and applications for data handling
Information Literacy and Technology
· Use the university’s VLE to access information
· Use electronic research skills
· Access data bases for research and information
· Use the University’s e portfolio to maintain a professional learning journal
Improving own learning and performance
· Critically reflect on professional practice
· Develop new pedagogical and leadership skills
· Use initiative and manage own learning
· Make independent use of supervision
Working with others
· Engage in group presentations and disseminations
· Work with professional colleagues to share ideas, research and good practice
Problem solving
· Generate and apply new knowledge
· Analyse complex concepts


· Write to academic standards required at M level
· Engage in meaningful debate and critical discussion
· Read critically
· Synthesise written and oral information

The qualifications offered are in line with QAA (2001) The Framework for Higher Education Qualifications in England, Wales and Northern Ireland (FHEQ) and are compliant with the Integrated Qualifications Framework for the Schools Workforce.

The programme is at Level 7 of the FHEQ and the IQF and leads to a Master of Arts (Education) degree. It has Postgraduate Certificates (PG Cert) and Postgraduate Diplomas (PG Dip) as exit points. Participants may exit with credit for single modules. Modules are at 20 Credit Accumulation Transfer (CAT) points and 10 European Credit Transfer (ECT) points or 40 CAT points and 20 ECT points; the dissertation is at 60 CAT and 30 ECT points.

Central CPD courses are held at the University or at a location central to participants. The Central provision includes taught, Fixed Content modules, Independent Study modules and supervision for students studying for a dissertation.

Most taught Central modules earn 20 CAT points and attract eighteen hours of tutor contact time through lectures, workshops and seminars. Participants may take up to two Independent Study modules at 20 CAT points each during their programme of study. These may be components of a PG Cert or a PG Dip and may also contribute to a named award. Independent Study modules attract two hours of individual tutor time, which can be face-to-face, or online.

Students have three years to complete a PG Cert, four years for a PG Dip and six years to complete an MA. They may follow a named Pathway or combine modules from any Pathway to achieve a generic award.

Named Pathways

The MA (Education) is the generic award and there are two additional named pathways:

· MA (Education) Inclusive Practice

· MA (Education) Leadership and Management

Credit accumulation for a named award

In order to gain a named award students must successfully complete two thirds of the required credit of the award, in that subject.

· For an MA (named), 120 CAT points in the subject, 60 of which must be through a dissertation which takes the subject area as its focus.

· For a PG Dip (named), 80 CAT points in the subject area.

· For a PG Cert (named), 40 CAT points in the subject area.

Academic credits gained in modules, not in the subject of the Pathway, may contribute to the named award if the topic of the assignment is subject focused. In this case, both the assignment title and the assignment content MUST indicate the subject focus.

In the case of a PG Cert, where 40 CAT points have been completed in one subject area, the award can be named - for example, Postgraduate Certificate (Education) Subject Leadership; Postgraduate Certificate (Education) Mathematics or Postgraduate Certificate (Education) Science.

Mod-Code Level Title Credit Single
CD7023 7 Professional Induction 20 Optional
CD7031 7 Critical practice 40 Optional
CD7032 7 Research design 20 Optional
CD7033 7 Practitioner enquiry 20 Optional
CD7034 7 Dissertation 60 Optional
CD7035 7 Dissertation 80 80 Optional

In order to gain a named award students must successfully complete two thirds of the required credit of the award, in that subject.
· For an MA (named), 120 CAT points in the subject, 60 of which must be through a dissertation which takes the subject area as its focus.
· For a PG Dip (named), 80 CAT points in the subject area.
· For a PG Cert (named), 40 CAT points in the subject area.
Academic credits gained in modules, not in the subject of the Pathway, may contribute to the named award if the topic of the assignment is subject focused. In this case, both the assignment title and the assignment content MUST indicate the subject focus.
In the case of a PG Cert, where 40 CAT points have been completed in one subject area, the award can be named - for example, Postgraduate Certificate (Education) Subject Leadership; Postgraduate Certificate (Education) Mathematics or Postgraduate Certificate (Education) Science.

The programme is open to both graduates who hold a good degree and non-graduates with professional experience. Non-graduates may be admitted to the award-bearing aspects of the programme by virtue of a professional qualification and a compulsory interview with the Programme Leader. 

The Programme operates within the parameters set by the  Department for Education (DfE) supporting teachers to deliver national requirements. There are no QAA benchmark statements for postgraduate study in Education.

Qualifications at Masters level are awarded to students who have demonstrated:

I. a systematic understanding of knowledge, and a critical awareness of current problems and/or new insights, much of which is at the forefront of their academic discipline, field of study, or area of professional practice;

II. a comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to their own research or advanced scholarship;

III. originality in the application of knowledge, together with a practical understanding of how established techniques of research and enquiry are used to create and interpret knowledge in their discipline;

IV. conceptual understanding that enables the student:

to evaluate critically current research and advanced scholarship in the discipline and

to evaluate methodologies and develop critiques of them and, where appropriate to propose new hypotheses.

Typically, holders of the qualification will be able to:

a) deal with the complex issues both systematically and creatively, making sound judgements in the absence of complete data, and communicate their conclusions clearly to specialist and non specialist audiences;

b) demonstrate self-direction and originality in tackling and solving problems, and act autonomously in planning and implementing tasks at a professional or equivalent level;

c) continue to advance their knowledge and understanding, and to develop new skills to a high level;

and will have the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment requiring:

the exercise of initiative and responsibility;

decision –making in complex and unpredictable situations; and

the independent learning ability required for continuing professional development.

 

Chester CPD works within the framework of the University’s Teaching and Learning Strategy which defines four strategic aims:

to develop successful learners;

to design inclusive curricula;

to promote excellence in teaching practice;

to build institutional capacity for change.

The programme also reflects the Learning and Teaching Strategy for the Faculty of Education and Children’s Services which commits to pedagogical principles that:

promote professional engagement and reflective practice;

encourage independent and autonomous learning; and

support continuing professional development.

and to principles of teaching that:

value students’ professional experience and prior learning;

support diversity and personalised learning;

encourage dynamic and participative learning;

promote collaborative learning;

encourage Internet and Web-based approaches; and

support reflective and Practitioner enquiry.

The main methods of teaching are:

Lectures

Tutor led seminars

Group sessions

Individual tutorials

Independent study

Formative progress feedback is available during the modules.



CPD adheres to the Assessment Policy of the Faculty of Education and Children’s Services. The programme adheres to the University’s policy for the assessment of students with disabilities or special circumstances.

General principles

Work is returned to students by post within four weeks of submission.

Extensions or deferrals can be granted if students produce documentary evidence of mitigating circumstances in support of their request.

Appeals against assessment decisions can logged in accordance with the University’s academic appeals regulations.

Handbooks

All modules have a handbook or module agreement.

All handbooks are available to students in hard copy and are posted into a dedicated module space.

The module handbook includes information on:

module aims and learning outcomes

outline content

assessment method (outlined below) which includes weighting

dates and procedures for submission of work

recommended reading session by session

M level assessment criteria

information about plagiarism

policy on late submission

regulations relating to extensions and deferments

regulations on appeals against assessment decisions

Marking

All assessed work is graded according to a percentage scale 0-100% using the University’s level 7 grading criteria linked to the QAA requirements for level 7.

Feedback to students is typed using a standard pro-forma. Feedback is given against the module learning outcomes and the M level criteria. Areas for improvement and development are presented as targets. Feedback on the work is intended to identify strengths and points of development. All students complete an assignment front cover sheet on which they describe how they have addressed previously identified targets.

Each module requires students to attend at least one tutorial during the course of the module. The module tutor acts as the Personal Academic Tutor (PAT). The Co-ordinator for CPD can also act as PAT if students choose.

Written work is not pre-marked. Written annotations on a students’ finished work are made in pencil. Grammatical, spelling and punctuation errors are underlined and marked in the margin. For dissertations, students can receive feedback on plans or on a first draft, but tutor feedback will not be provided for the ‘Implications’ or ‘Conclusion’ chapters.

A distinction grade is awarded for work marked at 70% + and a fail is awarded for work marked at below 40%. Work between 20% and 39% can be resubmitted.

Students may submit work anonymously using their student number, notwithstanding that anonymity is not always achievable as students are known to tutors and some assessment modes involve face to face assessments. Every effort is made to ensure that marking is objective. All work is first marked by the module tutor. 25% of work is second marked unless the number of submitted assignments is fewer than 6, in which case, all work is second marked.

Where there is disparity between the first and second marker, a third marker adjudicates. All dissertations are double marked by the supervisor and then by another marker. A third marker marks anonymously and blind without the previous markers’ feedback comments. All work which attracts a distinction or fail grade is second marked. A representative sample of work is sent to an external examiner and includes all fails and distinctions.

There are seven assessment methods. Assessment tasks are selected from these seven by the lecturer to best assess the learning outcomes for the module. Where practicable, this will be in negotiation with the participants. Where this is a School based module the assessment task will be decided at the project module planning stage.

All assessments are linked to the University’s level 7 assessment and marking criteria

All programme modules will use one of the following seven assessment methods (A to G):

Assessment method A

Assessment task:

An essay.

Total words: 4000-5500 (20 CAT points)

Module learning outcomes to be addressed:

100% of the marks will be awarded for the essay.

Where an overall grade of 40% has not been achieved, resubmission will be of the whole assignment.

Assessment method B

Assessment task:

A research report

Total words: 4000-5500 (20 CAT points)

Module learning outcomes to be addressed:

100% of the marks will be awarded for the report.

Where an overall grade of 40% has not been achieved, resubmission will be of the whole assignment.

Assessment method C

Assessment task

Part 1 An annotated portfolio - 3000 words (notional).

Part 2 A critical commentary - 2000 words (+-10%).

5000 words (20 CAT points)

Module learning outcomes to be addressed:

100% of the marks will be awarded together for the two parts.

Where an overall grade of 40% has not been achieved, both parts 1 and 2 will be resubmitted.

Assessment method D

Assessment tasks

Part 1 Sketchbook - 3000 words (notional).

Part 2 Dialogical assessment - 2000 words (notional)

5000 words (20 CAT points)

Module learning outcomes to be addressed:

50% of the marks will be awarded for each of the two parts.

Where an overall grade of 40% has not been achieved, whichever part or parts have failed will be resubmitted.

Assessment method E

Assessment tasks

Part 1 Presentation plus viva – 3000 words (notional).

Part 2 Annotated portfolio – 2000 words (notional.)

5000 words (20 CAT points)

Module learning outcomes to be addressed:

50% of the marks will be awarded for each of the two parts.

Where an overall grade of 40% has not been achieved, whichever part or parts have failed will be resubmitted.

Assessment method F

Assessment tasks

Part 1 An exhibition – 3000 words (notional).

Part 2 Annotated portfolio – 2000 words (notional).

5000 words (20 CAT points)

Module learning outcomes to be addressed:

50% of the marks will be awarded for each of the two parts.

Where an overall grade of 40% has not been achieved, whichever part or parts have failed will be resubmitted.

Assessment method G

Assessment tasks

Part 1 Performance – 3000 words (notional).

Part 2 Video – 2000 words (notional).

5000 words (20 CAT points)

50% of the marks will be awarded for each of the two parts.

Where an overall grade of 40% has not been achieved, whichever part or parts have failed will be resubmitted.

The Dissertation

12000 - 16500

Wordage does not include bibiographies, appendices or abstract.

Students who engage in Chester’s CPD masters programme will become reflective practitioners and critical thinkers who can articulate their views with confidence and conviction. They will have expert knowledge of the political arena of education. They will have read widely and engaged with theoretical frameworks which have challenged their values, beliefs and understanding. They will have become confident researchers, finding solutions to challenges in their professional setting and practice. Their professional integrity will have been affirmed and they will have become sufficiently professionally secure to confront and manage change and to lead others, should they choose.

Based on previous trends, graduates from the CPD programme might expect to take one or more of the following routes:

1. Remain in teaching.

2. Gain promotion within teaching.

3. Move to an LA's advisory service.

4. Move to work in Higher Education - either part or full time.

5. Move to work in situations other than teaching – for example, social work, research, childcare, bookshops, libraries, publishing, theatre

The University of Chester is committed to the promotion of diversity, equality and inclusion in all its forms; through different ideas and perspectives, age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation. We are, in particular, committed to widening access to higher education. Within an ethically aware and professional environment, we acknowledge our responsibilities to promote freedom of enquiry and scholarly expression.

 

Each negotiated, school-based and independent, module is approved by the CPD (Education) Approval Panel operating on behalf of the Faculty of Education and Children’s Services Board of Studies.

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