MA Special and Inclusive Education

The University of Nottingham - Faculty of Social Sciences

Program Description

MA Special and Inclusive Education

The University of Nottingham - Faculty of Social Sciences

MA Special and Inclusive Education

The MA Special and Inclusive Education focuses on the specific needs of children with learning difficulties and disabilities, communication impairments, literacy difficulties/dyslexia, autism and ADHD to illustrate the challenges encountered in professional practice.

Critical exploration of current theory and research inform consideration of pedagogical approaches as well as the development of effective systems and structures for working with parents/carers and different agencies.

The MA Special and Inclusive Education is suitable if you are:

  • interested in developing your knowledge and understanding of children and young people with special educational needs
  • working as a teacher or associated professional in mainstream education or specialised settings wishing to extend your skills and practice
  • an experienced professional or new to working with children with additional needs
  • UK-based or an international student
  • It provides high-quality professional development that offers flexibility for you to pursue areas of interest and specialisms.

This course supports students who are not currently based in a teaching establishment to secure placements in local schools, offering the opportunity to experience local practice and the potential to conduct small scale research projects. You will also be supported by:

  • a friendly team of tutors with a breadth and depth of knowledge, understanding and skills developed through experience in the field
  • interactive and collaborative teaching methods promoting shared enquiry
  • individual and group tutorials
  • emphasis on formative feedback to support you in successfully completing the assessed elements of the course
  • access to extensive study materials from libraries and online sources
  • a comprehensive seminar programme covering a range of additional learning needs and associated approaches to teaching and learning
  • opportunities to meet and discuss approaches with other experienced practitioners

"I have thoroughly enjoyed the modules, and would have no hesitation recommending the course to colleagues."

"I have not only enjoyed the intellectual challenge of the modules and the assignments but also the opportunity to study with colleagues from a range of backgrounds. And not least, my tutors have proved not only experts in their fields but also able to pass their knowledge on to their students."

Course details

The taught element of the course can be completed over one year full-time or two years part-time, there is then an eight-month dissertation period. The course commences in September, but a January start is also possible for part-time students.

The course comprises four 30-credit modules, plus a 60-credit dissertation. There are also Postgraduate Diploma and Postgraduate Certificate exit points.

Voluntary work

The face-to-face course operates a volunteering in schools scheme. This is aimed at providing you with practical experience of working in local schools as well as an opportunity to increase your knowledge and understanding of how children and young people with special educational needs are supported in mainstream or special school. It is also anticipated that the schools will benefit from your input and support the development of their practice through evidence based research.


  • Debating Special and Inclusive Education
  • Researching Special and Inclusive Education
  • Relationships and Behaviour
  • Communication and Literacy
  • Dissertation

The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. This list is an example of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.


Graduates of the MA Special and Inclusive Education have been successful in finding employment in a diversity of areas including classroom/learning support, special education, coordinating provision for children with special needs, leadership within special education, policy/administration.

This course supports career progression through:

  • evaluating effective approaches to supporting disabled children and young people including those with moderate to severe and complex learning difficulties and/or personal, social, emotional and behaviour difficulties
  • exploring values and beliefs, policy, legislation, multi-agency working and involvement of families and disabled children and young people
  • building confidence in your professional practice skills
  • promoting personal development through reflection and critical analysis of your own beliefs and practices

Increasing your academic and research skills will support future doctorate level study including, for example, a Doctorate in Education or Educational Psychology or a PhD Special Educational Needs. Co-ordinators and Inclusion Managers who have completed The National Award for SEN Co-ordination can select modules from this programme to advance to a full MA qualification.

Average starting salary and career progression

In 2015, 91% of postgraduates in the School of Education who were available for employment had secured work or further study within six months of graduation.*

*Known destinations of full-time home higher degree postgraduates 2014/15.

Career prospects and employability

The acquisition of a masters degree demonstrates a high level of knowledge in a specific field. Whether you are using it to enhance your employability, as preparation for further academic research or as a means of vocational training, you may benefit from careers advice as to how you can use your new found skills to their full potential.

Our Careers and Employability Service will help you do this, working with you to explore your options and inviting you to attend recruitment events where you can meet potential employers, as well as suggesting further development opportunities, such as relevant work experience placements and skills workshops.

The University of Nottingham is the best university in the UK for graduate employment, according to The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2017.

Entry requirements

  • 2:2 (or international equivalent) or a relevant professional qualification in education, psychology, teacher training or a caring-related discipline
  • Applicants with a degree in any other discipline must have work experience
  • IELTS: 6.5 (no less than 6.0 in any element); if these grades are not met, English preparatory courses are available
This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated March 16, 2017
Duration & Price
This course is Campus or Online
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2017
Jan. 2018
1 - 2 years
Part time
Full time
6,930 GBP
United Kingdom - Nottingham, England
Start date: Sept. 2017
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Start date: Jan. 2018
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Sept. 2017
United Kingdom - Nottingham, England
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Jan. 2018
United Kingdom - Nottingham, England
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
International fees: 15,885 GBP (HEU fees: 6,930 GBP)