MA Education (part-time distance learning 3-5 years)

Students seated looking at computer screen
Entry year
Course code
Education and Childhood
Three to five years
Part-time (Online Learning); starts September and January
Programme leader
Dr Fay Lewis

This course is open for applications.

To apply for entry to this course in January or April 2021 please visit the 2020/21 course page.

Page last updated 29 January 2021


This part-time modular course aims to support participants in developing as critically reflective practitioners with a broader and deeper understanding of their context, phase or subject.

Students are supported in analysing and carrying out small-scale enquiries, underpinned by and connecting theory with practice. 

This course includes portfolio and independent modules which do not require regular attendance at UWE Bristol, enabling flexible and distance study, as well as taught modules.

The later stages of this course require attendance at one compulsory taught module, Researching Education. This module is available as a summer school or evening class.

Why study the MA Education?

  • We aim to produce critically reflective practitioners with a deeper understanding of their subject who link theory to practice on the basis of evidence based research.
  • You will have access to research active staff with wide ranging experience and specialisms in Education.
  • The MA Education is a flexible programme - you can choose from taught modules or work-based action enquiries, independent study or portfolios of professional development.
  • You can often use existing credits you have from relevant study at UWE Bristol or elsewhere towards your total credits (e.g. M Level modules in a PGCE programme).
  • It is possible to undertake single modules and build credits without committing to full MA; students can register to do phase one modules as CPD (accumulating up to 90 credits) and then transfer to the MA programme to complete their studies.

Read about ongoing professional development opportunities in Education.

Watch: The learning and teaching experience



The full Masters course comprises 180 credits divided into two 90 credit stages.

Phase one modules

You are able to select a personalised route through phase one, until you have accumulated a total of 90 credits:

Transformational Dimensions of Lifelong Learning (30 credits)

This module will provide opportunities for personal reflection, library based enquiry and/or empirical enquiry into the transformational dimensions of lifelong learning within personal and/or social contexts.

Independent Study (30 credits)

This module takes the form of a literature review on an area of interest or relating to an aspect of practice of the student. During the initial phase the focus will be on identifying a specific area and developing a plan, strategy and study programme relevant to the chosen area.

Teaching for Learning (30 credits)

The syllabus will have a focus on improving the educational outcomes for learners in educational settings. The core of the focus is on understanding teaching and learning and some content will be negotiated to reflect key priorities in educational settings.

Beginning a Career: reflective practice for newly qualified teachers (30 credits)

Priority areas for development will relate to the particular needs of individual NQTs, but will encompass issues to do with professional values and practice; knowledge and understanding; and teaching. By developing through two professional progress review points the student will have collected and critically reflected upon a range of evidence about progression through their induction year. This utilises the work NQT's (Newly Qualified Teachers) do as part of their NQT year.

Evidencing Learning from Experience (30 credits)

This module covers:

  • an exploration of what constitutes a 'learning event' and 'learning outcomes' of an appropriate level;
  • an autobiographical perspective on professional learning;
  • identification of evidence of professional learning and presentation skills for an effective portfolio.

Phase two modules

You will study:

Researching Education* (30 credits)

This module will examine approaches to educational research and how this supports professional enquiry and development. It will look at practitioner and action research as well as case study approaches to understanding educational and professional action. There will also be a focus on research methods, the processes of analysis and presentation of argument as well as an examination of ethics and theoretical frameworks.

Dissertation (60 credits)

The dissertation focus is on the execution of students' empirical research and writing up their theories. Sections likely to be included are: Introduction; Contextualisation; Methodology; Data Collection and Analysis; Implications; Recommendations and Conclusions.

The delivery of modules offered will vary and will include the following:

  • Attending taught sessions, workshops and discussion groups.
  • Research in your workplace.
  • Portfolio routes.
  • Writing up an area of work you are already engaged in.
  • Independent study.

*A taught course at UWE Bristol for 12 weeks or as a summer school usually held in the first week of the school summer holidays.

Hear what our students think about their time at UWE Bristol.

The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved we will inform you.

Study time

The MA is a flexible modular programme and can be spread over 3-5 years. Taught modules take place on weekday evenings, starting at 17:00.


We use a range of assessments across the course designed to enhance your learning and support your future employability. We do not use written exams as part of our formal assessments.

For more detail see our full glossary of assessment terms.


Study facilities

The Department of Education and Childhood at Frenchay Campus has excellent facilities and resources for learning and teaching.

Its modern, purpose-built facilities provide high quality teaching rooms with state-of-the-art technology available. The Department has excellent IT facilities and houses an Open Learning Area with the latest equipment.

Learn more about UWE Bristol's facilities and resources.


Supplementary fee information

See our funding pages for more information. 

UWE Bristol Alumni receive a 25% discount. Students working in schools in partnerships with UWE Bristol's Education Department may be eligible for a discount. Contact our admissions team for more details.


Entry requirements

Usually applicants will be required to hold an undergraduate degree (or equivalent). Applicants without a degree will be required to demonstrate suitability for study at master's level.

Accredited Learning will be available up to a maximum of 90 credits for relevant qualification, eg PGCE, Cert Ed, Dip Ed. Accredited Experiential Learning may be available for attaching academic credit to recognised professional training/CPD courses, eg NPQH/SL/ML, MAST.

International applicants

We welcome international students onto this course.

For country specific entry requirements, please find your country on the country Information pages.

English Language Requirement

EU applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 with 5.5 in each component (or approved equivalent*).

*The University accepts a large number of UK and international qualifications in place of IELTS. To find details of acceptable tests and the required grades please visit English Language requirements.

English Language support

If you are applying to study at UWE Bristol and require additional support to meet our English language requirements, you may be able to attend one of our pre-sessional English courses.

Read more about our pre-sessional English programme.

How to apply

Read more about postgraduate applications.

For further information

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