Taught course

The National Award for Special Educational Needs Co-ordination

Plymouth University · School of Early Years and Primary Education

Entry requirements

All participants must be holders of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). They must also be holders of the post of SENCO; this can be either as a new SENCO, or as an experienced SENCO. The former is defined as ‘those who have taken up the lead SENCO responsibilities in their, or any other maintained school, within a total period of twelve months.’ The latter status will be for all other SENCOs. There will be an equal number of places in each cohort for both new and experienced SENCOs. For further information, please enquire.

Months of entry

January, September

Course content

This successful one year training programme is designed to support the professional development of special educational needs coordinators (SENCOS). Gain 60 credits at masters level and join the hundreds of SENCOs in the South West Consortium who have already gained the award. Discover how you can get involved and make a positive impact on practice, and the achievements of schools and their pupils.

  • Take the opportunity to undertake this Department for Education (DfE) approved post-graduate qualification which must be achieved by teachers new to the role of SENCO. If you are an experienced SENCO or working in a related professional role you can also apply. To achieve the National Award you must have QTS/QTLS, and if not it may be possible for you to achieve the PgCert Inclusive Education (60 masters level credits).
  • Benefit from an award offered through the South West Consortium consisting of Plymouth University and the University of Exeter, working in partnership with the local authorities of Bournemouth, Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Plymouth, Poole and Somerset.
  • Take part in a programme which runs in Bodmin, Plymouth, Exeter, Ilminster, and Dorchester. The local tutors are mainly Special Educational Needs (SEN) advisory teachers and experienced SENCOs, working in conjunction with university tutors.
  • Gain experience working with a tutor allocated to you, offering extensive expertise, knowledge and experience and high quality local personal tuition.
  • Draw on support from a professional learning community through face-to-face and virtual learning support and resources. Access valuable university facilities and online resources.
  • Gain 60 masters level credits which can be used towards a masters degree (e.g. MA Education Special Educational Needs).

Information for international students

The minimum IELTS score for acceptable English proficiency for entry is 6.5.

Qualification and course duration


part time
12 months

Course contact details

Admissions Office
01752 585858