MA International Educational Management

University of Leeds, Faculty of Education, Social Sciences, and Law

Program Description

MA International Educational Management

University of Leeds, Faculty of Education, Social Sciences, and Law

MA International Educational Management

This specialist programme is suitable for experienced educators, including teachers, school leaders, lecturers, governors, ministry officials, administrators, school inspectors, and students of development, or officials from international contexts with current, or prospective, management responsibilities in schools, further or higher education.

If you work in a senior educational leadership role, or aspire to such a position, the MA International Educational Management will help you address the issues central to the management and leadership of schools, colleges and higher education institutions in national policy contexts.

As the programme includes participants from across the world, we are able to make use of such varied student expertise and knowledge to enrich the learning experience of the whole group. Academic study is further enriched through educational visits to government departments and local schools. An emphasis is placed on the critical application of contemporary education theories to practical challenges and case studies relevant to students’ own cultures and workplace environments.

The course provides a deeper understanding of education management and leadership theory and practice from an international comparative perspective. Students will develop conceptual insights essential to effective leadership and management practice, along with academic skills in educational research and academic writing as a foundation for further study at doctoral level. The diversity of the group also facilitates the development of intercultural competency and communication skills, essential to educational leaders in a globalised world.

Why study with us?

There are several MA degrees offered in Educational Leadership at various higher education institutions throughout the UK and abroad, but External Examiner reports have highlighted both the very high level of student satisfaction and what has been described as an ‘almost unique’ feature of the Leeds programme in assessing educational leadership, management and policy from a critical international comparative perspective, facilitated by the diverse cultural and international profile of the course participants.

MA International Educational Management critically examines key issues in education policy and organisational leadership and management from an international comparative perspective, preparing students for promotion to more senior leadership positions and/or further research for doctoral degrees (PhD and EdD). Dr Michael Wilson Programme director.

Students come from a variety of educational sectors ranging from primary schools to universities, and are thus able to adapt the assignment topics to their own contexts and professional interests. The tutors are not only research active, with strong international contacts for both teaching and research, but also have senior leadership experience in schools and/or universities.

Research environment

The tutors are research active and have published widely in top-rated educational journals. Much of this work has been done (and is being done) in collaboration with colleagues overseas, including academics and school leaders in China, Indonesia and Nepal.

The key publications of the tutors are included in the reading lists and made available on the VLE. Students also have access to additional research methods modules and supplementary workshops on preparing their critical studies. PhD students in IEM are also encouraged to give presentations to the MA group on their research, which has been mutually beneficial in providing valuable feedback to the PhD students while acquainting the MA students with some leading-edge research in their field of study. Several Visiting Academics and Research Fellows from China working in Leeds with the Programme Leader have also attended MA seminars and contributed to the research culture of the IEM course.


As members of a wider research community, we encourage students to attend a variety of relevant School, Faculty and University seminars on research and practice related to educational policy, leadership and management. The formal academic programme is also enriched through student membership of the British Educational Leadership Management & Administration Society (BELMAS) and a number of educational visits. We regularly receive welcome news and feedback from former students on their experience of the MA (IEM) programme and its value to their professional development and subsequent career progression.

Membership of BELMAS

Membership of BELMAS is free for students in their first year of postgraduate study and provides access to two leading journals, Educational Management Administration & Leadership and Management in Education, as well as an opportunity to attend major events, including the BELMAS Annual Conference in July and local research seminars and workshops. Attendance at such events is co-ordinated and supported by course tutors.

From 2013, students will also be encouraged to join the Commonwealth Council for Educational Administration (CCEAM). Membership fees are fixed at 2009 prices and are as little as £4 for students from developing countries in the Commonwealth. Membership includes access to the journal International Studies in Educational Administration.

Educational visits

In semester 2 we plan to arrange at least one school visit to provide an opportunity for MA (IEM) students to observe lessons and to discuss various aspects of school leadership and management with the Principal and other senior members of staff. In the past, students have found this a particularly valuable experience in linking the theory and principles of effective leadership and management to a case study context. Discussion topics have included the management of financial and material resources and staff development policy and practice, which are directly linked to the coursework modules.

Also In semester 2 an opportunity to explore the processes of developing educational policy into practice is offered through a series of visits in London. Meetings take place with a Member of Parliament (MP) and associate staff with an opportunity to tour parliament and witness debates in the Houses of Commons and Lords. We explore the political process of policy development and how it becomes law using current educational themes as examples. Further additional sessions are arranged at the government Departments for Education and Business, Innovation and Skills, talking to the civil servants responsible for developing and implementing educational policy and with members of a political party hoping to influence educational policy. These sessions include presentations from key civil servants with invitations for students to question and discuss the issues. In the past two years, Hilary Benn, the MP for Leeds Central (including the University of Leeds), has met us at Westminster. He is currently in the Shadow Cabinet and has served in the previous Labour government as Secretary of State for International Development with a wide knowledge of international policy issues and a keen interest in the MA (IEM) programme. Our stay in London is over three days, including two nights' accommodation at a university hall of residence. This is also an excellent opportunity to relax and reflect on the programme. Time is also available during the visit for other parts of London to be explored.

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated June 7, 2016
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2017
12 months
Full time
Start date Sept. 2017
United Kingdom Leeds, England
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Duration 12 months
Price Request Info