Postgraduate taught 

Leadership & Learning PgCert: Online distance learning

Leadership for 21st Century Learning EDUC51082

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Education
  • Credits: 30
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Taught Wholly by Distance Learning: Yes

Short Description

Research in education identifies the significant role that teachers can play in enhancing outcomes for learners through their identification and leadership of change to improve aspects of learning and teaching. This course aims to equip teachers with knowledge and skills that will support them in this process.


A blend of synchronous and asynchronous online components.

Excluded Courses



Assessment will consist of two components:

1. A project plan which draws from relevant research and data to provide a rationale for the change and a justification of the proposed approach to each stage of the project. (1500 words).


2. An essay in two parts (4500 words)

a) A critically evaluative report on the implementation of a small-scale project, which draws from relevant evidence, data, and research to provide a critical evaluation of the project.


*Alternative option for part 2a which is available in specific circumstances (e.g. to students participating on a full-time basis). A detailed project proposal which includes critical discussion of each stage of the project and draws from relevant data, research, academic literature and other information to justify the rationale for the change and for the project approach.


b) A critical self-reflection of personal and professional growth through learning on the course and programme.

Course Aims

This course aims to

1. Deepen participants' understanding of relevant research and policy in which teachers are positioned as key agents in the delivery of change and improvement in learning and teaching.

2. Develop participants' knowledge and expertise in the leadership of change through critical engagement with relevant academic literature and the application of this literature to identify and conduct/plan a small-scale project to improve teaching and/or learning.

3.Provide an opportunity for participants to develop as enquiring, research-engaged agents of change through evidence-informed enquiry and reflective practice.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

On completion of this course, students will be able to:

Knowledge and understanding

■ Apply theoretical and applied understandings of the concept of leading change to deliver improvements in learning and teaching.

■ Identify and justify an area for change and improvement, drawing from sources of data, research and other information relevant to the context.

■ Conduct and/or plan* a small-scale change project which will support an improvement in learning and/or teaching.

■ Critically reflect upon and evaluate professional practice and the potential to lead change in learning and teaching within their context.

*The option to plan only is available in specific circumstances e.g. for students participating on a full-time basis.


Skills and other attributes in

Subject-specific/practical skills

■ initiate, plan, implement, monitor and evaluate a small-scale change project,

■ identify and justify decisions taken in relation to managing and leading a small scale project,

■ build and develop individual leadership skills,

■ evaluate effectiveness within a given range of tasks and skills.


Intellectual skills

■ Critically engage with a range of research and policy to explore theoretical and applied approaches to leading change in learning and teaching.

■ Systematically analyse sources of contextual data to identify potential areas for change to enhance learning and teaching.

■ Adopt a data-informed approach to identifying an appropriate area for change that is relevant to the specific context

■ Use critical enquiry and reflection to impact on practice, decision-making and professional reflection.


Transferable/key skills

■ Critical evaluation.

■ Self evaluation and reflection.

■ Self management skills.

■ The capacity to make informed judgments to deal with complex issues using a range of data.

■ Communication skills and the ability to maintain and enhance working relationships with others.

■ Planning, decision making and problem solving skills.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

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