Entry requirements

A 2:1 or above (or international equivalent) Bachelor's degree in Education, Teaching or English (or related Social Science degree i.e. Anthropology, Economics, Geography, History, Law, Linguistics, Political Science, Philosophy, Psychology, and Sociology) is required.

Applicants without a 2:1 or a degree in Education, Teaching or English (or related Social Science degree as above) are welcome to apply, but should have a degree and a minimum of three years relevant professional experience post degree, in an education-focused setting.

Months of entry


Course content

The MA Education (Leadership) is for those who may not have worked in education, but aspire to be education leaders one day. It aims to make a real difference in schools through leadership that is focused on learning and school improvement. We welcome applications from all aspiring or current educational leaders.

Educational leadership takes many forms including school leadership and management, curriculum or subject leadership, advisory work, teaching training and educational technology. On the MA Education (Leadership) pathway, you will be part of a research-led community that studies and develops critical and practical understanding of research- and evidence-informed practice in education.

You will study the skills, knowledge and characteristics of effective educational leaders and how leaders can improve schools. You will engage with cutting-edge research in the fields of educational effectiveness, improvement and leadership; examine issues in real schools and improvement projects; and hear from outstanding educational leaders from the West Midland region who have been invited to share their expertise and experience of educational leadership in practice.

All assignments and the dissertation may be tailored to suit your own subject specialism, context and interests. By developing your understanding of evidence- and values-informed education, along with skills of reflective and critical analysis for improving education, this pathway is suitable whether your aim is to make a difference leading a classroom, a school or an entire school system.

The MA Education (Leadership) pathway is part of the School of Education’s Educational Leadership Academy which connects, collaborates with, and develops educational leadership across the region and beyond. It is underpinned by and promotes evidence- and values-driven approaches to educational leadership.

International students

The MA Education course attracts students from a wide range of backgrounds and nationalities, and welcomes applications from international students.

The University of Birmingham, which has over 10,000 international students from approximately 150 countries, provides support throughout the course for those that are new to, or less experienced in, studying in a UK context.

If you would like further information about studying in Birmingham, then you can visit our international students webpage.

MA Education pathways

You can choose from one of our other specialist focus pathways, based on the School of Education’s principle research areas or the broader MA Education:

Please note that like most Masters programmes, this programme does not confer qualified teacher status (QTS).


The MA Education (Leadership) programme consists of the following compulsory modules, a dissertation and optional modules from the list below.

Unless indicated otherwise the modules listed for this programme are for students starting in 2023.

The following compulsory modules must be taken:

Compulsory Modules

Optional Modules

Choose two 20 credit modules from the list below. Find out more about each of the modules

  • Citizenship, human rights and the environment
  • Education, Curriculum Design Planning and Social Justice
  • Language, discourse and society
  • Disability and Inclusive Development
  • Education policy and improving schools
  • Special educational needs of children with autism
  • Curriculum and Approaches for Children with Autism

Information for international students

Standard English language requirements apply. Speakers of English as a second language will be required to hold an IELTs 6.5 with no less than 6.0 in each band or equivalent qualification.

Fees and funding

UK students
International students

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MA
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details