Postgraduate taught 

Middle Leadership & Management in Schools PgCert

Leading Change for Improvement EDUC5927

  • Academic Session: 2020-21
  • School: School of Education
  • Credits: 40
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

This course is designed to enable aspiring middle leaders to gain further knowledge and expertise in leading change in their school context, with an emphasis on curriculum and pedagogical leadership within the current national and international policy focus on achieving equity and excellence in education.


5 teaching days (Saturdays) plus online component.

Requirements of Entry

Access to a suitable work environment to take forward work based elements of the course.


The focus of the summative task is on 'Leading an area of departmental/faculty/school improvement as a Middle Leader to transform learning.'


Participants will be expected to demonstrate capability and competence in planning, conducting and evaluating a learning and teaching improvement initiative in school. The assessment components (8000 words equivalent) comprise a written assignment in two parts (i) a critically evaluative report on the change initiative and (ii) a reflective review. The second assessment component is a poster presentation. Further information is provided below.


1. An essay in two parts:


Part A

Critically evaluative report on change initiative - a summative report (2500 words) providing a critical evaluation of the change initiative taken forward as part of the course. Selected evidence to illustrate the impact of the area for improvement (no word count).


Part B

Reflective review - critical self-reflection of personal and professional growth as a middle leader through learning and work-based tasks on the course (3000 words).


2. Poster presentation - design and present a poster summarising rationale, implementation strategy, evaluation and next steps. To be presented to tutors, peers and invited local authority partners. Assessed by tutors. (2500 words equivalent).

Course Aims

■ Building capacity for change for improvement as a middle leader through leading an agreed priority for improvement.

■ Critical understanding of changes processes including the complexities and challenges associated with these.

■ Develop and apply skills in initiating and taking forward an improvement initiative through responsive planning and evaluation of interim progress.

■ Building further capacity and capability in self and others to lead change through appreciating and reflecting critically on the emotional and personal aspects of leadership.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

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

■ Apply critical knowledge and understanding of the concept of change and change processes for improvement in learning.

■ Demonstrate competence in processes of emergent planning and enquiry, drawing on relevant sources of intelligence / information and data, with an appreciation of the context specific nature of school improvement.

■ Build and apply strategies for rigorous and collaborative evaluation with demonstrable evidence of impact for learners.

■ Exhibit further development and reflect critically on development in interpersonal and intrapersonal skills in middle leadership to lead change for improvement in learning.

■ Develop and sustain critical approaches to collaborative working with a focus on enhancing teaching to lead to high quality learning experiences.

■ Develop criticality through engaging with academic literature, policy research, to effect change for improvement to meet the needs of learners.

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.