Master’s offer for 2019 trainees and ambassadors

Turn your Postgraduate Diploma in Education into a master’s degree with an optional third year of part-time study. 

Last updated 23 April 2021


Created by our partner universities, the master’s degree is designed to build on your effectiveness and impact as a teacher and a leader. Taking advantage of this opportunity will help you to develop your core teaching knowledge, formally reflect on your practice and instigate evidence-based change and innovation in your school and across society. 

This page explains the structure and details of the master’s degree at each university, the financial arrangements, and the registration process. We’re dedicated to supporting the leadership needed to address the stubborn educational inequalities that exist.  

We hope you’ll consider taking this opportunity to benefit both yourself and your continued contribution towards the Teach First vision of a fair education for all children.

I was able to research something that was directly relevant to my professional experience in the classroom…I found it incredibly energising to take a step back and be able to research and write about the professional issues you are otherwise caught up in on a day-to-day basis.

Katherine Ingham, Teach First ambassador 

My dissertation helped me understand the way my students saw the world and the impact I had on their understanding of themselves and those around them. It also helped me place myself within a much larger global community and understand how to reduce or eliminate patterns of behaviour and prejudices within myself.

Emma Sheppard, Teach First ambassador

Introducing the Teach First master's offer

The master’s degree is a part-time, optional commitment that takes a minimum of one academic year to complete. It builds on the work you’ve already undertaken on the Training Programme to get your Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE).

The PGDE gives you between 90 and 120 credits to transfer to a master’s degree, depending on the institution you choose. All our university partners offer a 60-credit dissertation module, although the exact structure of the degree varies between them.

Please scroll down to each individual university's course outlines for full details.

Our university partners

Our university partners are experts in education and leadership. Each university has independently designed a master’s degree specifically for Teach First ambassadors, and you can choose to study with any of them. Some universities offer distance learning, which allows you to combine your studies with work or other commitments. All offer competitive fees.

Please see our 'Course outlines' below for the full list of partner universities.

How much will it cost?

For the cost of each master’s degree, check the individual university course outlines. Fees will be paid directly to the university in line with their policies – Teach First is not involved in this process. 

Terms and conditions

Admission to the master’s degree is at the sole discretion of the university provider and will be subject to you meeting the relevant entry criteria. You’ll be solely responsible for completing all enrolment procedures required by your university, for meeting all deadlines relating to the master’s degree and for all other communications with your university.

Please note that the university you enrol with will have terms and conditions of their own, and you’ll need to comply with these. Teach First bears no liability to students or applicants with respect to the programmes outlined in this document. 

How to apply

There are key requirements you’ll need to complete as part of any course. Please make sure you consider the opportunity carefully alongside any  other responsibilities and understand the financial commitments you’ll be making with your university.

The enrolment process is different for each university. Although the master’s degree is linked to Teach First, you’re applying to complete it with one of the universities listed in this document. The programme will be delivered solely by them. The universities have a right to refuse your application, so please make sure you allow enough time to complete the registration or enrolment and follow each step carefully. The process may include some or all of the following:

  • Completing a detailed application form.
  • Providing proof of your PGDE and degree qualification.
  • Attending an induction.

Once you’ve enrolled for a degree, you’ll be able to access both your chosen university’s on-site facilities and online library.

For more information on the masters’ degrees in this booklet, please contact the individual university you’re looking to apply to. 

I obtained a PGCE rather than a PGDE, can I apply?

To be eligible for the master’s degrees outlined below, you must have completed a PGDE from within the 2017 Training Programme cohort onwards. If you have a PGCE and would like to apply, we advise you to contact the university directly for more information.

Course outlines

Bath Spa University

MA Educational Leadership (Teach First)

Maximum transferable credits: 120

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Course delivery method: 

  • Taught in several ways, including group seminars, presentations, online and phone/Skype supervision and face-to-face supervision. 
  • University sessions take place on Saturdays at the Newton Park campus.  
  • Assessment is entirely based on a 15,000 word dissertation. 

Cost: £2,565 (£1,900 for those who completed their PGDE at Bath Spa University)

Birmingham City University

MEd Education (Leadership in Learning)

Maximum transferable credits: 120

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Course delivery method:

The programme starts with taught sessions. Delivery of the initial inputs will be on a weekend (on two Saturdays). Students are then entitled to five sessions of tutorial support with their supervisor.

Induction to working and writing at master’s degree level for a dissertation will form part of the initial input and this will take place in late September.

Cost: £2,200

Canterbury Christchurch University

MA Education (specialist leadership pathway for Teach First)

Maximum transferable credits: 120

Course structure: Supervised research project dissertation (60 credits at level 7) 

Course delivery method:

1 whole-day research methods seminar held in the following locations (students choose which event to attend):

  • Medway (CCCU Medway Campus) – 2 October 2021 (indicative date).
  • South Coast (Southampton) – 9 October 2021 (indicative date).
  • East of England (Ipswich) – 9 October 2021 (indicative date).

Also includes:

  • Ongoing support with assigned supervisor/tutor.
  • Distance learning option available.

Cost: £2,840 (£2,272 where 20% discount is available for those who completed their PGDE at CCCU)

University of Manchester

MA Leadership in Learning

Maximum transferable credits: 120

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Course delivery method:

  • Ongoing support with assigned supervisor/tutor.
  • Five days of lectures and seminars on Saturdays. These will take place between October and June.
  • Ongoing support from tutors and a designated dissertation supervisor. 

Cost: £3,334

Northumbria University

MA Education Leadership in Learning (Teach First)

Maximum transferable credits: 120

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Course delivery method:

  • Six workshops (5:00pm – 7:30pm) between September and March.
  • Ongoing support with assigned supervisor/tutor. 

Cost: £2,450 per 60 credits

Sheffield Hallam University

MA Leadership in Learning (Teach First)

Maximum transferable credits: 120

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Course delivery method:

  • Teaching is a mixture of lectures and seminars currently both face to face and online.  These will be timed to support the research project and take place at weekends and evenings to suit student need.  
  • Ongoing support with dissertation supervisor. 
  • Distance learning option available. 

Cost: £2,830

UCL Institute of Education

MA Educational Leadership (Teach First)

Maximum transferable credits: 90

Course structure: 

  • 30-credit core module + 60-credit dissertation module.  


  • 30-credit core module + 30-credit report + 30-credit optional module. 

Course delivery method:

Core module taught in the autumn term (October to December 2021) over eleven weeks, using a blended approach with a mix of online lectures and content as well as weekly in-person seminars/tutorials at our Bloomsbury campus.


  • 1 year: £5,250.
  • 2 years: £2,625.

For more detail on each course, please see below.

Bath Spa University

Master’s degree title: MA Educational Leadership (Teach First)

Course length: 1 year, part-time

Maximum transferable credits: 120 credits

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Module leader: Róisín Ní Mhocháin

Contact telephone: +44 (0)1225 876 180

Contact email:


Course summary

The MA Educational Leadership (Teach First) at Bath Spa University provides an opportunity to undertake a substantial piece of research on an aspect of education theory, policy or practice relating to leadership, which is relevant to your professional practice and context. It will allow the reporting of research process and findings in a format appropriate to postgraduate level study.

The assessment is entirely based on a 15,000-word dissertation.

You’ll be taught in several ways, including:

  • in-person group seminars and presentations
  • online and phone/Skype supervision
  • face-to-face supervision. 

The first in-person group seminar reviews your understanding of research methods and allows time for you to tease out and begin to focus your research idea into an achievable project. We encourage you to consider your own current or future context and choose a topic that is of interest to you. We advise an action research or case study approach for your project allowing you to build on what you have learned in your PGDE.

Following the first seminar you’ll be assigned a supervisor who is knowledgeable in the field of Educational Leadership and Development. They will support you in further developing your project idea into a solid research proposal and also guide you through the ethical approval process. You will be invited to join an online seminar which will explore ethics generally and also more specifically in relation to your own research projects prior to submitting your ethics approval application.  The course also requires self-directed study and wide reading around your area of research. Following tutorials, you’ll be given formative feedback on your progress and the next steps in your study.

Drawing on internationally based research and informed by the values and mission of Teach First, this master’s degree is designed to develop and improve your expertise as an educational leader. You’ll take a critical and cultural approach to leadership as a socially constructed and ethical practice. You’ll also relate theory and research to your own working environment.

University seminar sessions will take place on Saturdays at the Newton Park campus.

You’ll have already successfully gained 120 credits from your PGDE. Building on this award, this 60-credit dissertation module allows you to complete your master’s degree.

This programme is open to all ambassadors who successfully completed the PDGE, wherever you completed the Training Programme.


The fee for enrolment in 2021/22 is £2,565.

Ambassadors who studied their PGDE at Bath Spa University will be eligible for a scholarship of £665 (total net fee of £1,900). Contact for more details.

Application and enrolment
  1. From Spring 2021: Apply using the course website.
  2. From Spring 2021: Application reviewed by the university.
  3. Late August/early September 2021: If accepted, you'll receive enrolment details and enrol online.
  4. Late September 2021: Master's degree course beings.


Birmingham City University

Master’s degree title: Master of Education – Leadership in Learning

Course length: 1 year

Maximum transferable credits: 120 credits

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Programme Director: Neil Sheasby

Lead Administrator: Jennifer Swain-Boateng

Contact telephone: 0121 331 6189

Contact email:


Course summary

Birmingham City University is a large, diverse and increasingly popular place to study, with around 24,000 students from 80 countries. We put  students at the heart of everything we do, giving them the best opportunities for future success. The university has an enviable reputation for providing quality, student-focused education in a professional and friendly environment. Our staff and student community is defined by our core values, which outline who we are as a university and how we will work with each other. Our core values are excellence, people-focused, partnership working, and fairness and integrity.

The School of Education and Social Work is one of the largest providers of Teacher Education in England. It offers an extensive portfolio of primary, secondary and post-compulsory/Adult Initial Teacher Training programmes at graduate-level and a significant BA Primary with QTS programme. An undergraduate secondary with QTS programme in computing, physical education and science (biology) was launched in 2019. Three undergraduate degrees in education and education-related fields are offered by the school and a number of successful graduates from these programmes go on to take a teacher-training programme.

A range of masters’ programmes are available, including a Master’s in Educational Leadership which is offered to Teach First ambassadors who have completed their Postgraduate Diploma in Education and Leadership (PGDE). We also offer a highly successful taught Doctorate degree, as well as PhDs.

The School of Education and Social Work has held the contract for the Teach First Training Programme PGDE in the West Midlands since 2013. It’s also held the contract for the East Midlands since the introduction of the PGDE. The MEd- Leadership in Learning is a programme specifically designed for Teach First ambassadors who have successfully completed their PGDE on the Training Programme. As someone who has already gained the PGDE, you will have 120 credits at master’s-level and we will recognise these through Advanced Standing/Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) for this master’s degree.

You’ll undertake a 60-credit dissertation module. At the beginning of the module, you’ll be brought together as a group to have taught inputs to prepare you to research and write your dissertation. Alongside this, there will be a focus on ethical issues and processes, so that you’re able to complete your dissertation proposal and submit the necessary ethical approval document.

You’ll be assigned a supervising tutor who will have a series of tutorials with you during your studies. These will be both face-to-face and by telephone/ Skype. You’ll be expected to keep your tutor updated on your progress. The research focus for your dissertation will enable you to draw on your work in school/education and build on the knowledge and understanding you developed during your PGDE. It will be informed by the values and mission of Teach First.

The master’s progression programme will start in late September in the West Midlands and the East Midlands via MS Teams. It’s open to all Teach First ambassadors who successfully completed the PDGE, wherever you completed the Training Programme.


The cost of the 60-credit master’s dissertation module is £2,200 (2021 commencement). The university reviews its tuition fees on an annual basis. You’ll be sent an invoice by the finance department once you’re fully enrolled on the programme. You’ll also receive guidance on how to pay  (cheque or credit/debit card) in advance, along with the expected schedule of payments (either the amount in full or two instalments).

Application and enrolment
  1. November 2020 onwards: Application process opens for September 2021. Check the university website and/or contact the Teach First Administrator (email, or call 0121 3316189).
  2. January 2021 onwards: Applications received and processed. Conditional offers made to applicants who meet the entry criteria.
  3. July 2021: Following Institutional Examination Boards (which awards the PGDE to Teach First trainees), successful completion of the PGDE will lead to a confirmation of the place on the programme.
  4. July/August 2021: Programme handbook, including induction information for the master’s programme made available to students. Final enrolment emails issued.
  5. September 2021: Enrolment completed and programme starts.


Canterbury Christchurch University

Master’s degree title: MA Education

Course length: One year, part-time

Maximum transferable credits: 120 credits

Course structure: Compulsory one-day research methods workshop at the start of the course, followed by personal and group supervision for the duration of the research project and dissertation (60 credits at Level 7)

Programme Director: Anselm Fisher 

Lead Administrator:

Contact telephone: 01227 767700 ext. 3289

Contact email:


Course summary

The MA Education at Canterbury Christ Church University includes a specialist leadership pathway, specifically designed for Teach First ambassadors such as you. After successfully completing the two-year PGDE (120 credits at Level 7) you can progress to a third-year, 60-credit research project dissertation. You can choose your own focus for research, based on your professional context, personal circumstances and interests.

This supervised research project is ideal for you if you occupy or aspire to a leadership and management position at any level in an education context.

After completing a compulsory research methods seminar, you will be  allocated a supervisor who will  keep in regular contact to support  your different stages of the research project. Supervisions normally take place on-line, either individually or in groups, typically covering areas such as the literature review, ethical clearance and data analysis. Supervisions are highly personalised to your personal and professional context and geographical location. 

Recent areas of research on the master’s degree include:

  • using virtual experiences to bridge the cultural capital gap
  • developing children’s digital literacy skills through English
  • building teamwork and leadership through the Duke of Edinburgh award
  • creating spaces for belonging
  • issues affecting retention in international schools
  • building a professional learning community in an international school
  • helping parents to support their children’s learning
  • raising aspiration through careers education
  • questioning the neo-liberal agenda in education
  • emerging leadership in the Head of Year role.

The university’s academic supervisors have extensive experience of school and university leadership and are actively engaged in local and international projects, academic research and publications.

Teaching locations

Canterbury Christ Church University is the provider of the Teach First PGDE in the South East, South Coast and East of England. The introductory taught session will take place in each of these regions (Covid-19 restrictions permitting), and on-line if you are studying from abroad. Following the completion of this compulsory session, individual tutorial support will be arranged with your supervising tutor.


The course fees for 2021/22 are £2,840. If you have previously studied at CCCU, including for the PGDE, you are eligible for a personal discount of 20% on fees.

You’ll be sent an invoice by the university’s finance department as soon as you’re fully enrolled on the programme. You can pay for your tuition fees in full at the start of the course, in three termly instalments or in eight monthly instalments. You can make payments and set up payment plans via the university website. If you completed your PGDE with CCCU, your credits will be brought into the MA automatically.

If you completed your PGDE with another provider, you are very welcome to complete your MA with us. Please be aware that you will be required to complete a Recognition of Prior Learning form as part of your application, for which a fee may apply.

Application and enrolment
  1. January 2021 onwards: You can apply online through the course webpage.
  2. July 2021: Offers of places emailed, together with session date information. Offers to be accepted by (applications by returning email 31 July 2021).
  3. August 2021: Once you have accepted the offer, you will be emailed a welcome letter and guidance of how to upload a photo for your student card, and how to complete your pre-registration online. This information will normally be sent within 40 days of the programme starting.
  4. August 2021: You should now able to see information on the student portal about your registration event, induction and welcome to the programme.


University of Manchester

Master’s title: MA Leadership in Learning

Course length: 1 year

Maximum transferable credits: 120

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Programme Director: Dr Paul Armstrong

Lead Administrator: Daniel Shipman

Contact telephone: 0161 306 1762

Contact email:


Course summary

The MA Leadership in Learning at the University of Manchester is a part-time programme for students who are full-time practitioners. The structure of the programme reflects this, with face-to-face learning taking place during a small number of Saturdays through the academic year.

On the programme you’ll identify and investigate a research problem, beginning with one or more research questions. You’ll then explore a workable solution to that defined issue or problem, ideally combining the practical with the theoretical, supported by empirical evidence. Students are encouraged to pursue an action or practice-based research project within your own organisation. This will build on the previous modules completed for the PGDE, each of which is focused on professional development and practice, and on your wider influence within the schools and communities you serve.

You’re expected to describe and discuss the influence and impact of your project inquiry. This might be the impact it has had on you, practitioners or citizens, the impact on wider policy and/or practice within their schools and organisations, or the impact on your community – or a combination of some or all of those.

Through lectures and seminars, the course introduces a range of issues relating to educational equity and inclusion, leadership, policy, practice and research. The programme draws on the considerable research, knowledge and expertise of academic staff members within the Manchester Institute of Education (MIE) at the University of Manchester.

The course aims to:

  • provide students with an opportunity to design, undertake and report on a small-scale independent inquiry in an area directly related to their practice and/or research interests.
  • further students’ knowledge of a relevant body of literature and develop their skills of synthesis and critical reasoning.
  • introduce students to research and theory across a range of different areas within the broader field of education.
  • develop students’ knowledge of, and competence in, research methods and practitioner inquiry within education.
  • support students to improve their writing, presentation and bibliographic skills
  • facilitate an understanding of how impact and influence may be disseminated in different forms to suit different audiences.

The course is delivered through lectures, group seminars and tutorials with a supervisor. This is supplemented with self-directed study and engagement with e-learning resources. The university encourages both individual and co-operative learning and hopes to foster an ethos of evidence-informed practice amongst students. They also aim to build on the expertise of their students, developed through their experience as teachers, who bring with them a wealth of practical knowledge and understanding.

Each student is allocated a university supervisor, who supports the dissertation project. That support consists of a flexible combination of tutorial meetings (face-to face, phone or Skype) and regular email contact. The assessment for this programme is made up of the following three components:

1. Research proposal (10%) – submitted by 31 January 2022 – comprising a detailed proposal for the dissertation project that outlines the focus, rationale, background literature, research design or approach, methods of data generation (or sourcing), analysis techniques, ethical considerations and project timeline. The indicative word count for this component is 2,500.

2. Dissertation (70%) – submitted by 31 August 2022 – comprising a 10,000-word account of the dissertation project.

3. Dissemination of impact (20%) – submitted by 31 August 2022 – through which students are expected to describe and discuss the influence and impact of their project through one of the following:

  • Blog.
  • Vlog.
  • Poster.
  • PowerPoint presentation.
  • Other format, to be agreed with the supervisor.

The indicative word count for this component is 2,500. The proposal and dissertation should comply with the requirements of an academic paper – the dissemination element should be written for an audience of professional practitioners and/or laypeople.


The fee for enrolment is (2021 figure):

  • £3,334 (home)
  • £6,667 (overseas)

This may be paid in three instalments (September, January and April).

Teach First no longer subsidises the cost of the programme. Students are encouraged to approach their employer to enquire whether any financial support is available for this important professional development activity.

Application and enrolment
  1. April 2021: Register interest with programme team.
  2. May-August 2021: Submit application to enrol for the programme.
  3. Late August/early September 2021: If accepted you'll receive enrolment details and enrol online.
  4. September 2021: The course begins.


Northumbria University

Master’s degree title: MA Education Leadership in Learning (Teach First)

Course length: 1 year

Maximum transferable credits: 120

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Programme Director: Dr Mike Cole

Lead Administrator: Mark Corcoran-Lettice

Contact telephone: 0191 215 6176

Contact email:


Course summary

The MA Education Leadership in Learning (Teach First) is offered part-time. To enrol on it, you’ll need to be a professionally qualified individual based in the UK and working largely in a school’s context. The programme has been designed around the needs  of ambassadors who have completed the Training Programme and are employed within schools. Independent study is an important feature of the programme design. Adult learning approaches, including work-based learning, allows you to tailor the programme to your own needs within your specialist area of practice.

We anticipate that you’ll maintain a timeline of your progress. This might include written records of supervision meetings, records of academic achievement and feedback, and perhaps reflective notes on experiences and personal development during the programme. This will serve as a record of achievement during the programme, and provides evidence to others – such as employers – on the benefits individuals and their organisations have gained from it.

You’ll complete a 60-credit dissertation module, WB0716 Work Based Project. The project module provides a common framework for undertaking master’s degree-level research using work-based learning project approaches.

You’ll customise the project throughout the selection of the research question and apply this to the discipline of education. This will entail undertaking a real-life quality improvement project, addressing an issue identified in practice within your work remit. This could be from a teaching and learning perspective, part of your school improvement plan, a response to an Ofsted report or changes in policy. Theory, education research reports, project management and change management models will inform the process. You’ll be supported throughout the programme by the programme leader and a guidance tutor, who will monitor progress and provide individual and group guidance as necessary. Tutorial support will be directed at problem solving, as well as helping you develop understanding of issues and questions covered in the programme and relating them to your own professional experience. Peer support is also important in developing understanding from a range of perspectives and educational contexts, and developing your collaborative working skills.

A supervisor with appropriate experience and expertise will be allocated to provide support and supervise you through your dissertation project. All teaching/tutoring staff on the programme are qualified teachers and practitioners with substantial experience in the sector. This will be assessed through a dissertation (15,000 words).


The fee for enrolment is £2,450.

Application and enrolment
  1. April to July 2021: Submit online application form.
  2. From April 2021 onwards: Application reviewed by the programme leader.
  3. Late August/Early September 2021: If accepted, you’ll receive enrolment details and enrol online.
  4. September 2021: The course begins.


Sheffield Hallam University

Master’s degree title: MA Leadership in Learning (Teach First)

Course length: 1 year

Maximum transferable credits: 120

Course structure: 60-credit dissertation module

Programme Director: Sarah Lawson

Lead Administrator: Tony Quixley

Contact telephone: 0114 225 5555

Contact email:


Course summary

On the MA Leadership in Learning (Teach First) at Sheffield Hallam University, you’ll complete one research project module of 12,000 words, worth 60 credits.

You’ll undertake an original piece of research related to your own professional and personal interest in leadership in learning. The module aims to deepen your understanding of research concepts, tools and applications within the context of developing your knowledge of leadership. By undertaking a largely autonomous substantive research-based project, you’ll learn how to develop your own research and leadership practice.

The mode of delivery is under review and will include lectures and seminars across three Saturdays and some evenings timed to correspond with arising need to support the introduction and design of the project, mid-review and pre-submission. You will be supported by the course and module leader and field experts during these sessions.

There will also be opportunities to debate and discuss themes, network and receive dissertation support. There will be ongoing supervisory support, allocated by specialism.  You will work with your supervisor to develop the means by which you can be best supported.

Assessment is entirely by the submission of a 12000 word leadership project in August - exact date to be confirmed. The programme will commence in September 2021.

It’s open to all ambassadors who successfully completed the PGDE, regardless of where you completed the Training Programme.


The fee for enrolment is £2,830

Application and enrolment
  1. March 2021 onwards: Complete application process.
  2. Within three weeks of application: Response sent and conditional offers made, enrolment/continuation information sent.
  3. July 2021: Place confirmed following successful completion of PGDE.
  4. September 2021: Course begins. 


UCL Institute of Education

Master’s degree title: MA Educational Leadership (Teach First)

Course length: 1 year (full-time) / 2 years (part-time) / 1-5 years (flexible)

Maximum transferable credits: 90

Course structure:

30-credit core module + 60-credit dissertation module


30-credit core module + 30-credit report + 30-credit optional module

Programme Director: Dr Ruth McGinity

Lead Administrator: Mrs Bilan Yusuf

Contact telephone: 0207 612 6615

Contact email: or


Course summary

On the MA Educational Leadership (Teach First) at UCL, you’ll take modules that add up to a total of 90 credits. This can be one core module (30 credits) and a dissertation (60 credits), or one core module (30 credits), a report (30 credits) and an optional module (30 credits).

The programme can be completed either full-time (one year), part-time (over two years) or flexibly (over one to five years). You’ll complete a dissertation (or report) in the final stage of the programme. This takes the form of an original piece of research on educational leadership.

Teaching is delivered through a blended approach which includes, facilitation, multimedia presentations and activity-based learning. Each module is supported by materials on our virtual learning environment and requires face-face attendance at our Bloomsbury campus for tutorials/seminars. The programme is assessed through written assignments, typically of 5,000 words, and a dissertation of 20,000 words.


Leading and Managing Change and Improvement - (30 credits)

This is a core taught programme and includes contributions from guest speakers recognised internationally as experts in their fields. Taking this module will expand your critical awareness of educational research on school leadership, innovation and change, and how this applies to leadership practices within your school and across the education system more broadly.

The module will be based around the following three themes:

  • Theories and practice of leadership.
  • Educational change and school improvement.
  • Social, policy and community contexts of leading for improved student outcomes.

It is taught between October and December 2021. It includes input from institute academics and visiting speakers, alongside group discussions and activities which will take place online and face-to-face. As part of the assessment, you’ll submit a 5,000-word essay of a case study of change. Please note this module is delivered on the main MA Educational Leadership programme, so the cohort will include students from Teach First as well as full and parttime students on the main MA programme.

Students must enrol for and complete the 30-credit core Leading and Managing Change and Improvement module in their first year.


1. Dissertation (60 credits)

In this double module you’ll get the opportunity and support to conduct research within any area of educational leadership, management, and policy. This will help you progress in your individual career choice, whether it’s within education, policy or private sector, nationally or internationally. This module provides an introduction to research methods in the social sciences and builds links to the Leading and Managing Change and Improvement module.

You’ll gain an understanding of:

  • the key methodological skills used in educational leadership and management research
  • how to deal with the methodological and ethical issues you’ll encounter when conducting school based research  

There is no taught component to this module. You’ll be supported by up to two cohort sessions, plus individual supervision.

You’re required to submit a research proposal (2,500 words) and apply for ethics approval before you conduct your research. To complete this module, you’ll be required to submit a 20,000 word (with 10% margin) dissertation.  

2. Report (30 credits)

As above, the report option requires you to undertake a piece of research within any area of educational leadership, management and policy, and you’re required to apply for ethics approval before you conduct your research. To complete this module, you’ll be required to submit a 10,000 word (with 10% margin) report.

If you opt for the report, you’ll also need to undertake a 30-credit optional module either from within the MA Educational Leadership suite of options, or from other optional modules from across the Department of Leadership and Learning. Our ‘optional’ modules include:

  • Doing and Using Educational Leadership and Management Research
  • Leadership for the Learning Community
  • Leading in Diverse Cultures and Communities.

Please note the module content and availability is subject to change. A minority of students will opt for other modules at UCL Institute of Education, subject to the availability of places and the approval of the programme leader. If you opt for a report (30 credits), you can choose one module outside of the programme.


The fee for enrolment is:

  • 1 year: £5, 250 (UK/EU).
  • 2 years: £2,625 (UK/EU).

If you’re registered as a modular student, your fees will be generated and charged on Portico after you have chosen your modules and the module selection deadlines have passed. The fee is based on the credit value of the modules you’re taking. This is worked out by dividing the full-time fee by the total number of credits your programme is made up of (in this case, 90 credits). If you change your module selection during the academic year your fees will not update automatically. If modules are added or removed during the year, please check your Portico account - if you think your fees need to be recalculated, you should email the student fees office.

Fees increase for all continuing students every year – this applies to full-time, part-time and modular students. These increases reflect the increase in cost to UCL in delivering the programme, such as operational costs, market forces and inflation. Any annual increases in the fees will not be more than 5% per year. You’ll be invoiced at the start of each academic year and can pay for each yearly fee in three instalments.

Students are ineligible for the Postgraduate Master’s Loan from the Student Finance, so will need to self-fund the tuition fees.

Application and enrolment
  1. By 31 May 2021: Apply using the online form. (Limited places available so early application is advised).
  2. 23 September 2021: Provide evidence of successful completion of PGDE.
  3. 27 September 2021: Induction week.
  4. 30 September 2021: Enrol and pay first instalment of fees.
  5. 4 October 2021: Core module begins - Leading and Managing Change and Improvement.
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