Postgraduate taught 

Educational Leadership MEd

Leading Professional Learning EDUC5850

  • Academic Session: 2021-22
  • School: School of Education
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

This course examines critically the key concepts and process that underpin professional learning, equipping leaders with a critical understanding of research and policy in this important area. The areas covered include approaches to professional learning, strategies for evaluating impact and critical exploration of policy and professional standards.


Blended learning including Saturday and weekday twilight teaching and online components.

Excluded Courses




There is a 4,000 word assignment in two parts:

1. A critical report on a literature search to identify current policy and texts in the area of professional learning (2000 words).

2. A critical analysis of a specific policy in professional learning (2,000 words).



In accordance with the University's Code of Assessment reassessments are normally set for all courses which do not contribute to the honours classifications. For non honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students, and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions are listed below in this box.

Course Aims

■ To provide a critical understanding of the nature of professional learning

■ To examine critically policy in professional learning

■ To develop key concepts underpinning practice in professional learning

■ To examine the relationship between professional learning and practice

■ To develop skill in policy analysis

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

The course provides opportunities for students to develop and to demonstrate knowledge and understanding, skills, qualities and other attributes in the following areas.


Knowledge and Understanding:

By the end of this course students will be able to:

- describe different approaches of professional learning

- compare and contrast examples of policy related to professional learning different international contexts

- identify the discourses underpinning policy in the area of professional learning

- justify the importance of professional learning in professional practice


Skills and Other Attributes:

By the end of this programme students will be able to:


Subject-specific/practical skills

- analyse critically policy discourses in professional learning

- evaluate relevant policy documentation


Intellectual skills

- draw on ideas from literature and research to review policy

- identifying relevant sources and policy documentation


By the end of this programme, students will be able to demonstrate:

Transferable/key skills

- planning and conducting a literature review

- discourse analysis

- presentation skills

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.