Education (Special Educational Needs) MA

2020-21

This course is eligible for Master's loan funding. Find out more.

Start date

28 September 2020

18 January 2021

Duration

2 years part-time
1 year full-time

About the course

This course will allow you to critically engage with current thinking about inclusive and special education. You'll study the changing cultural and historical attitudes to disability and reflect on the social changes that have encompassed disability rights, human rights and equality.

You'll explore how our understanding of special educational needs and disabilities has developed and the impact this has on our understanding of inclusion. The course combines the theoretical knowledge with an exploration of what this means for educational practice from early years through to post-compulsory education.

The course is tailored around you.You can expand on your special educational needs focus by choosing from a range of further options to match your role, experience or organisation to help you progress as an informed, reflective and inspirational practitioner.

On this course you’ll have the opportunity to develop an understanding of critical reflection and how to employ independent learning strategies to enable you to evaluate and inform your professional practice.You’ll also develop and deepen your knowledge and understanding of educational research and be able be able to use these skills in researching an aspect of special educational needs for your dissertation.

You’ll be taught by an outstanding team of teachers.You’ll also have access to our extensive professional and academic network which feeds directly into course design and delivery and to excellent facilities and specialist equipment.

Outstanding teaching, access to our wide ranging professional networks, plus the latest research findings all help to ensure our students are equipped with knowledge and skills needed within the workplace. Many of our courses are also offered on a flexible full or part-time basis to ensure you’re able to work towards your qualification around your existing commitments.By choosing to study with the University of Huddersfield you’ll join an inspiring, passionate and committed community focussed on making your studies as enjoyable, rewarding and successful as possible.

Dr Ann Harris

Professor Ann Harris, Associate Dean (International)

Course detail

One module in each of the September, January and May terms:

Core modules:

Special Educational Needs and Disability: Evaluating Policy and Practice

In this module you'll study changing cultural and historical attitudes to disability including, medical intervention from the early part of the 20th century and more recent social changes that encompasses the disability rights, human rights and equality, and models of health and disability. You'll explore how our understanding of SEND has developed, and the impact of this on our understanding of inclusion, as well as investigate how the needs arising from specific SEND conditions are culturally, socially and historically defined, and what this means for educational practice.

Introduction to Action Research in Teaching and Learning

This module will help you to understand the principles and practices of action research. You'll develop an understanding of how action research leads to research-based improvement in teaching and learning, and an awareness of how personal professional development can contribute to the development of the teaching/training professions with a view to raising learner achievement.

Methods of Enquiry

This module will develop and deepen your knowledge and understanding of research methods, it considers some of the theories, methods and implication of research and the complex role of researchers. You'll explore a range of methods of enquiry in order to enable you to understand the significance and ethics of research.

And one optional module from the list below. (Please note you will study either ‘Introduction to Action Research in Teaching and Learning’ or ‘Methods of Enquiry’.)

On this course you’ll have the opportunity to develop an understanding of critical reflection and how to employ independent learning strategies to enable you to evaluate and inform your professional practice. You’ll also develop and deepen your knowledge and understanding of educational research.

Our part-time course takes 24 months to complete starting in September. The part-time modules are normally taught at Saturday Day Schools.

You'll also use our Virtual Learning Environment and online library facilities which provide access to a wide range of high quality learning materials.

The course is normally assessed through course work. The assessments on the course allow you to demonstrate your practical knowledge alongside developing your critical and theoretical understanding of the subject. The assessments build on your particular interests and context and are likely to have outcomes that will be of benefit to your professional life and to your employer, particularly the dissertation which focuses on the specialist area of your course title.

You will be provided with guidance to help you develop your assignment work by module tutors and specialist learning support staff. For international students, we provide a weekly academic study skills support workshop to help you get the most from the main modules.

Feedback (usually written) is normally provided on all coursework submissions within three term time weeks – unless the submission was made towards the end of the session in which case feedback is available after the publication of results.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements for this course are normally:

  • An honours degree in a relevant subject at 2:2 or above, or a professional equivalent

If your first language is not English, you will need to meet the minimum requirements of an English Language qualification. The minimum for IELTS is 6.0 overall with no element lower than 5.5, or equivalent will be considered acceptable. Read more about the University’s entry requirements for students outside of the UK on our Where are you from information pages.

Teaching excellence

  1. Huddersfield is a TEF gold-rated institution delivering consistently outstanding teaching and learning of the highest quality found in the UK (Teaching Excellence Framework, 2017).
  2. We won the first Global Teaching Excellence Award recognising the University’s commitment to world-class teaching and its success in developing students as independent learners and critical thinkers (HEA, 2017).
  3. Here at Huddersfield, you’ll be taught by some of the best lecturers in the country. The University is joint first in England for the proportion of staff with teaching qualifications (HESA 2020).
  4. For the past ten years, we’ve been the UK’s leading university for National Teaching Fellowships too, which rate Britain’s best lecturers. It’s all part of our ongoing drive for teaching excellence, which helps our students to achieve great things too.
  5. We’re unique in the fact that all our permanent teaching staff* have, or are completing, doctorates. This expertise, together with our teaching credentials, means that students here learn from knowledgeable and well-qualified teachers and academics who are at the forefront of their subject area.

*Permanent staff, after probation: some recently appointed colleagues will only obtain recognition in the months after their arrival in Huddersfield, once they have started teaching; research degrees applies to those on contracts of more than half-time.

Your career


This MA course provides you with a broad range of module options allowing you the opportunity to tailor the programme to suit your current role and/or future career ambitions. Successful study at this level supports you in your current role, helps give you the confidence to tackle a wide range of workplace challenges and supports you in taking advantage of wider promotional and developmental opportunities.

The course offers a recognised qualification, a broadening of horizons and a chance to pursue particular areas of interest.

*Percentage of our postgraduate students who go on to work and/or further study within six months of graduating (Destination of Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2016/17).

93.8% Graduates employed*

Student support

At the University of Huddersfield, you'll find support networks and services to help you get ahead in your studies and social life. Whether you study at undergraduate or postgraduate level, you'll soon discover that you're never far away from our dedicated staff and resources to help you to navigate through your personal student journey. Find out more about all our support services.

Important information

We will always try to deliver your course as described on this web page. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below.

Changes to a course you have applied for

If we propose to make a major change to a course that you are holding an offer for, then we will tell you as soon as possible so that you can decide whether to withdraw your application prior to enrolment.

Changes to your course after you enrol as a student

We will always try to deliver your course and other services as described. However, sometimes we may have to make changes as set out below:

Changes to option modules

Where your course allows you to choose modules from a range of options, we will review these each year and change them to reflect the expertise of our staff, current trends in research and as a result of student feedback or demand for certain modules. We will always ensure that you have a range of options to choose from and we will let you know in good time the options available for you to choose for the following year.

Major changes

We will only make major changes to the core curriculum of a course or to our services if it is necessary for us to do so and provided such changes are reasonable. A major change in this context is a change that materially changes the services available to you; or the outcomes, or a significant part, of your course, such as the nature of the award or a substantial change to module content, teaching days (part time provision), classes, type of delivery or assessment of the core curriculum.

For example, it may be necessary to make a major change to reflect changes in the law or the requirements of the University’s regulators; to meet the latest requirements of a commissioning or accrediting body; to improve the quality of educational provision; in response to student, examiners’ or other course evaluators’ feedback; and/or to reflect academic or professional changes within subject areas. Major changes may also be necessary because of circumstances outside our reasonable control, such as a key member of staff leaving the University or being unable to teach, where they have a particular specialism that can’t be adequately covered by other members of staff; or due to damage or interruption to buildings, facilities or equipment.

Major changes would usually be made with effect from the next academic year, but this may not always be the case. We will notify you as soon as possible should we need to make a major change and will carry out suitable consultation with affected students. If you reasonably believe that the proposed change will cause you detriment or hardship we will, if appropriate, work with you to try to reduce the adverse effect on you or find an appropriate solution. Where an appropriate solution cannot be found and you contact us in writing before the change takes effect you can cancel your registration and withdraw from the University without liability to the University for future tuition fees. We will provide reasonable support to assist you with transferring to another university if you wish to do so.

Termination of course

In exceptional circumstances, we may, for reasons outside of our control, be forced to discontinue or suspend your course. Where this is the case, a formal exit strategy will be followed and we will notify you as soon as possible about what your options are, which may include transferring to a suitable replacement course for which you are qualified, being provided with individual teaching to complete the award for which you were registered, or claiming an interim award and exiting the University. If you do not wish to take up any of the options that are made available to you, then you can cancel your registration and withdraw from the course without liability to the University for future tuition fees and you will be entitled to a refund of all course fees paid to date. We will provide reasonable support to assist you with transferring to another university if you wish to do so.

When you enrol as a student of the University, your study and time with us will be governed by a framework of regulations, policies and procedures, which form the basis of your agreement with us. These include regulations regarding the assessment of your course, academic integrity, your conduct (including attendance) and disciplinary procedure, fees and finance and compliance with visa requirements (where relevant). It is important that you familiarise yourself with these as you will be asked to agree to abide by them when you join us as a student. You will find a guide to the key terms here, along with the Student Protection Plan, where you will also find links to the full text of each of the regulations, policies and procedures referred to.

The Office for Students (OfS) is the principal regulator for the University.

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