Professional Learning & Enquiry MEd

A group of teachers having a discussion

This programme is designed for practising teachers who are either in or aspiring to leadership roles in education. The programme will cover the major elements of leadership and management in education and is designed to provide you with a critical understanding of the principles underpinning leadership and management.

Key facts

Why this programme

  • If you are a teacher and looking to develop your understanding of teacher leadership and/or progress into the role of Principal Teacher (or Head of Department/Faculty), this programme is designed for you.
  • You will benefit from a combination of academic and practice-focused learning to develop your capability to lead teaching and learning within your school (or Department/Faculty); particularly to achieve the ambitions of Curriculum for Excellence.
  • There is a focus on collaborative, enquiry-orientated learning, drawing on your own experiences and those of your academic colleagues to bring about improvement.
  • Your learning will be supported by an academic staff that plays a leading role in the area of career-long professional and leadership development in Scotland. 

Programme structure

The MEd has three phases of study:

Years 1 and 2

An entry Postgraduate Certificate linked to participant’s professional experience, particularly experience in a promoted post:

  • Teacher leadership
  • Middle leadership and management

Year 3

Two optional courses selected from one of the following areas of study:

  • Middle leadership and management
  • Leading professional learning
  • Supporting pupil learning
  • Futures and international perspectives
  • Wider perspectives within educational studies

Year 4 and 5

Planning and designing a practitioner enquiry followed by practice-focused dissertation.

What our students say

Barry Wright, Faculty Head – English, Media & RMPS (Vale of Leven Academy)

'Without any doubt, this has been the most significant and transformational element of education that I have engaged with, post-school. Prior to undertaking the MEd, I had many views on education, but I struggled to contextualise both my own role and the professional actions that would progress my career.

Within weeks of starting the programme, I had noticed differences in my own behaviour and approach and I saw immediate, positive results from this. My role as a classroom teacher developed significantly, taking on additional leadership responsibilities, whilst I found opportunities for career advancement far easier to understand and assume.


I also realised just how complex education actually is. The support that tutors at the University of Glasgow offered my group was exceptional – in many ways it might be more apt to describe them as mentors. Equally, the relationships that I have built with colleagues who are also undertaking the course have been meaningful and have played a key role in developing my understanding of leadership and the different contexts that exist across subjects, sectors, and local authorities.

Interestingly, the new GTCS Standard for Leadership and Management, which is beginning to offer a clear approach to progressing leadership within our profession, dovetails with issues, concerns and areas of development that we have studied on the MEd Professional Learning and Enquiry for the past four years.

Overall, the MEd at Glasgow is a wonderful opportunity to develop your leadership and professional enquiry skills in a flexible and supportive environment. Furthermore, there is no question that it will have an appreciably positive impact upon your career. I would highly recommend the programme to all teaching practitioners who are keen to develop their practice and leadership skills.'

William Turner, Teacher of French

'Participation on the programme has had a considerable impact on my professional life. The programme’s structure provides participants with a range of highly relevant avenues of study, all of which impact significantly on participants’ professional development. Participants are expected to develop their skills as critically-reflective practitioners, and a core element of the programme is the linking of a range of professional reading to classroom research, which ultimately enhances the quality of the planned learning experiences provided for our learners. The structure of the programme provides opportunities for rewarding professional dialogue amongst participants, and a natural extension of this is the development of relevant leadership opportunities within communities of practice.


My involvement in the programme has undoubtedly impacted on my current seconded role. I currently feel very well prepared for my forthcoming Masters dissertation phase, as a result of the structure and content of the course, and of the rewarding experience gained through the implementing of research into classroom practice. I would be very happy to recommend both the programme and the University of Glasgow. My experience on the programme since 2009 has been thoroughly rewarding and it is my hope to continue my studies on completion of my MEd.'

Entry requirements

for entry in 2016

The normal entry requirement for postgraduate taught programmes is a 2.1 Honours degree or equivalent qualification (for example, GPA 3.0 or above) although recognition is given for professional experience.

Applicants should be fully registered with the General Teaching Council and have access to a suitable work environment. There are flexible entry points to the programme based upon professional experience, particularly experience in a promoted post.

English language requirements

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level.

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • overall score 6.5
  • no sub-test less than 6.0
  • or equivalent scores in another recognised qualification (see below)

Common equivalent English language qualifications

All stated English tests are acceptable for admission for both home/EU and international students for this programme:

  • ibTOEFL: 92; no sub-test less than 20
  • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English):  176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • PTE Academic (Person Test of English, Academic test): 60; no sub-test less than 59
  • Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII at Distinction with Distinction in all sub-tests

For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use these tests to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level programmes. The University is also able to accept an IELTS test (Academic module) from any of the 1000 IELTS test centres from around the world and we do not require a specific UKVI IELTS test for degree level programmes. We therefore still accept any of the English tests listed for admission to this programme.

Pre-sessional courses

The University of Glasgow accepts evidence of the required language level from the English for Academic Study Unit Pre-sessional courses. We also consider other BALEAP accredited pre-sessional courses:


What do I do if...

my language qualifications are below the requirements?

The University's English for Academic Study Unit offers a range of Pre-Sessional Courses to bring you up to entry level. The course is accredited by BALEAP, the UK professional association for academic English teaching; see Links.

my language qualifications are not listed here?

Please contact the Recruitment and International Office:


For further information about English language requirements, please contact the Recruitment and International Office:

Fees and funding

Tuition fees for 2016-17


Home and EU
Full time fee£2889
Part time 20 credits£321
Full time fee£15250

Fees are subject to change and for guidance only

Funding opportunities

Career prospects

It is likely you will already be employed within education. The professional development you gain on this programme should help enhance your career. The programme also provides an excellent platform for you to move onto doctoral studies and an academic career.

How to apply

We ask that you apply online for a postgraduate taught degree. Our system allows you to fill out the standard application form online and submit this to the University within 42 days of starting your application.

You need to read the guide to applying online before starting your application. It will ensure you are ready to proceed, as well as answer many common questions about the process.

Guide to applying online

Do I have to apply online for a postgraduate taught degree?

Yes. To apply for a postgraduate taught degree you must apply online. We are unable to accept your application by any other means than online.

Do I need to complete and submit the application in a single session?

No. You have 42 days to submit your application once you begin the process. You may save and return to your application as many times as you wish to update information, complete sections or upload additional documents such as your final transcript or your language test.

What documents do I need to provide to make an application?

As well as completing your online application fully, it is essential that you submit the following documents:

  • A copy (or copies) of your official degree certificate(s) (if you have already completed your degree)
  • A copy (or copies) of your official academic transcript(s), showing full details of subjects studied and grades/marks obtained
  • Official English translations of the certificate(s) and transcript(s)
  • Two supporting reference letters on headed paper
  • Evidence of your English Language ability (if your first language is not English)
  • Any additional documents required for this programme (see Entry requirements for this programme)
  • A copy of the photo page of your passport (Non-EU students only)

If you do not have all of these documents at the time of submitting your application then it is still possible to make an application and provide any further documents at a later date, as long as you include a full current transcript (and an English translation if required) with your application. See the ‘Your References, Transcripts and English Qualification’ sections of our Frequently Asked Questions for more information.

Do my supporting documents need to be submitted online?

Yes, where possible, please upload the supporting documents with your application.

How do I provide my references?

You must either upload the required references to your online application or ask your referees to send the references to the University as we do not contact referees directly. There is two main ways that you can provide references: you can either upload references on headed paper when you are making an application using the Online Application (or through Applicant Self-Service after you have submitted your application) or you can ask your referee to email the reference directly to See the 'Your References, Transcripts and English Qualifications' section of the Frequently Asked Questions for more information.

What if I am unable to submit all of my supporting documents online?

If you cannot upload an electronic copy of a document and need to send it in by post, please attach a cover sheet to it that includes your name, the programme you are applying for, and your application reference number.

You may send them to:

Recruitment & International Office
71 Southpark Avenue
G12 8QQ
Fax: +44 141 330 4045

Can I email my supporting documents?

No. We cannot accept email submissions of your supporting documents.

What entry requirements should I have met before applying? Where can I find them?

You should check that you have met (or are likely to have met prior to the start of the programme) the individual entry requirements for the degree programme you are applying for. This information can be found on the ‘entry requirements’ tab on each individual programme page, such as the one you are viewing now.

What English Language requirements should I have met before applying? Where can I find them?

If you are an international student, you should also check that you have met the English Language requirements specific to the programme you are applying for. These can also be found on the ‘entry requirements’ tab for each specific programme.

Further Information

Please see the Frequently Asked Questions for more information on applying to a postgraduate taught programme.

Guidance notes for using the online application

These notes are intended to help you complete the online application form accurately, they are also available within the help section of the online application form. If you experience any difficulties accessing the online application then you should visit the Application Troubleshooting/FAQs page.

  • Name and Date of birth: must appear exactly as they do on your passport. Please take time to check the spelling and lay-out.
  • Contact Details: Correspondence address. All contact relevant to your application will be sent to this address including the offer letter(s). If your address changes, please contact us as soon as possible.
  • Choice of course: Please select carefully the course you want to study. As your application will be sent to the admissions committee for each course you select it is important to consider at this stage why you are interested in the course and that it is reflected in your application.
  • Proposed date of entry: Please state your preferred start date including the month and the year. Taught masters degrees tend to begin in September. Research degrees may start in any month.
  • Education and Qualifications: Please complete this section as fully as possible indicating any relevant Higher Education qualifications starting with the most recent. Complete the name of the Institution (s) as it appears on the degree certificate or transcript.
  • English Language Proficiency: Please state the date of any English language test taken (or to be taken) and the award date (or expected award date if known).
  • Employment and Experience: Please complete this section as fully as possible with all employments relevant to your course. Additional details may be attached in your personal statement/proposal where appropriate.
  • References: Please provide the names and contact details of two academic references. Where applicable one of these references may be from your current employer. References should be completed on letter headed paper and uploaded on to your application.

Standard application deadlines

  • International applications (non-EU): 22 July 2016 
  • UK and EU applications: 26 August 2016

Classes start September 2016 and you may be expected to attend induction sessions the week before.

Apply now