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International and Comparative Education

Key information

  • Module code:

    7SSEM061

  • Level:

    7

  • Semester:

      Spring

  • Credit value:

    30

Module description

What can you learn from comparing education systems, schools or teachers? International comparisons have recently risen to prominence in the education policy discourse. At its best, comparative education can inform us about learning in different places or times and can provide us with fresh perspectives on ourselves. When we engage in international comparative education, differences are often stark. A world of alternatives opens up to us - with the capacity to challenge and reassure in equal measure. But caution is advisable. When we observe differences, what are the less visible factors we need to account for? When we find trends across countries, do they reflect national consensus or international pressures? What then is the influence of organisations such as the OECD, UNESCO, the World Bank and the EU? The question arises: are policy makers' interpretations justified or do they merely reflect pre - set political imperatives? In this module we will: familiarise ourselves with the field of comparative education; consider the relationship between education and aspects of national contexts; evaluate the methodology, contribution and limitations of international comparative education; and identify international trends in curriculum, assessment and pedagogy. Students will benefit from the international perspectives of the tutors, outside speakers, and their fellow students.

Assessment details

  • 1 x 4,000 word assignment (75%) 
  • Group presentation (25%)

Module description disclaimer

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Please note that modules with a practical component will be capped due to educational requirements, which may mean that we cannot guarantee a place to all students who elect to study this module.

Please note that the module descriptions above are related to the current academic year and are subject to change.