This programme provides participants, who have clinical professional experience, with the opportunity to pursue postgraduate education relevant to their professional interests and requirements. The programme aims to provide a distinctive element by combining work-based opportunities with theoretical underpinning, thus enabling participants to develop their own practice as clinical educators.
Participants need to have regular teaching responsibilities as part of their role, because of course activities and also because of the programme’s focus on the connection between theory and practice in clinical education.
The heart of the Masters in Clinical Education programme is the Postgraduate Certificate in Clinical Education. As a recognised teaching qualification in higher education, the programme is dual accredited: successful completion of the programme awards participants Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy and Membership of the Academy of Medical Educators (via the expedited accredited application route). Course participants from a nursing and midwifery background will have the option of specific support in developing their teaching, as required by the Nursing and Midwifery Council. As a 60-credit Level 7 award, the Certificate is comprised of one 45- credit core module that encourages grounding in pedagogic thinking and practice, and a one 15- credit option module of the participant’s choice.
Upon successful completion of the Postgraduate Certificate, and with agreement from the programme team, participants can apply to continue their study into the Diploma level. Participants at this level may pursue one further core module and three option modules from a range of interdisciplinary and discipline-specific options. The core of the Diploma is the module Using Research in Clinical Education. This module offers participants an insight and understanding into the methodologies and methods used to conduct enquiry in clinical education settings, and an opportunity to develop their ability to systematically analyse the existing research in order to understand more about pedagogical issues in day-to- day clinical practice. The second module at this level, Researching Clinical Education, which is required to continue onto the Masters level but is otherwise optional at the Diploma level takes this a step further by encouraging participants to develop their own plan for designing and conducting an appropriate enquiry in their own settings. Colleagues with an existing Postgraduate Certificate in Clinical Education, or a similar award, from another institution, may apply for admission at this level by requesting an Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL).
Masters in Clinical Education
Once participants have advanced through the Postgraduate Certificate and Diploma stages of the Programme successfully, and by agreement from the programme team, they can register on the Dissertation Module to complete the Masters in Clinical Education. The dissertation, which consists of an extended piece of written work
of between 10,000 and 15,000 words, enables participants to demonstrate their ability to plan, carry out and evaluate a piece of research into an aspect of their academic practice. It will be an original piece of work; which might, for example, present new evidence on a familiar aspect of teaching and learning; apply established leadership models or theories to a new context; or present an independent critique of an existing body of theory.
Programme modules consist of required face-to-face postgraduate seminar and workshop sessions, which require advance reading and preparation, as well as self-study outside the seminar sessions. Some assigned group activities and self-directed activities must be completed outside seminar sessions.
Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.
Most participants start with the postgraduate certificate and begin with the core module, which starts in October, and an option module, which can start between February and April, meaning that they should finish the Postgraduate Certificate in about 12 months.
The Postgraduate Certificate is 60 credits, which generally corresponds to about 600 hours of work. That breaks down typically to about 60 hours of postgraduate seminar sessions (at which attendance is mandatory; generally these are study days which are spread over the academic year), and a further estimated 540 hours consisting of self-study, assigned group activities, reading, consolidating learning from previous study days, and preparation for and writing of assessments.
Assessment is by coursework; no examinations are conducted on this programme. Written assignments include academic essays; compilation of and reflection on evidence of teaching; successful completion of teaching observations.
The study time and assessment methods detailed above are typical and give you a good indication of what to expect.
The most challenging thing for most people is that they find it difficult to balance work and postgraduate study. It is an academically rigorous course, but people who are currently on the course and have finished the course have rated it very highly and feel that their teaching practice has improved as a result of the course. You are required to have an educational component to your role as part of this course, that is, that you have some ongoing opportunities to teach. This allows you to meaningfully put the ideas in the programme to use on a regular basis (and to bring your experience as a teacher into your learning and your participation on the programme).