This programme comprises four x thirty (30) credit modules at Level 7 that will enable educational leaders to train in and evidence outstanding practices and real whole-school change in support of the most vulnerable and challenging students. The programme aims to enable teachers to develop expertise in pastoral leadership through critical evaluation of research and scholarship and to integrate this with their own practice. Students will be able to critically analyse, engage in and reflect on these educational issues and reflect on the implications for their own educational setting.
The Postgraduate Diploma is delivered by Inclusion Expert and supervised by the University of Buckingham.
Module 1: Leading People and Organisational Change
This module introduces students to the thinking related to leading staff and organisational change. Students take simple but thoughtful steps to help identify what would have the greatest impact within their setting for the most vulnerable and challenging students. In this module students will reflect on their development through critical evaluation of key documents relating to leadership competencies and they will be able to evidence the application of this theory on their actions in their setting.
Module 2: Leading on Upskilling Staff
This module looks at the latest in terms of evidence-based pedagogy and links this to the work of a pastoral leader outside of the classroom. The students work with the professional development of their staff through the delivery of five online courses; Attachment in the Classroom; Behaviour as Communication; Advanced Listening Skills and, How to Support Students in a Crisis. In this unit, students are introduced to the most recent research and theoretical knowledge around effective teacher development.
Module 3: Leading on Transformational Change for Vulnerable Students
Students demonstrate their ability to devise a work-based action plan for working with vulnerable students. This will be completed by working collaboratively with four other students, to explore the effectiveness of teacher professional development in their current organisation. This will involve an evaluation of coaching theory and methods along with an understanding of contemporary statutory policy to understand the nature and responsibilities of pastoral leadership. Students apply a range of appropriate research methods and enquiry methodologies to assess the effectiveness of their plan, taking into account the culture, leadership and processes associated with their organisation
Module 4: Innovate and Lead in Other Settings
In this unit, students focus on operating as a reflective practitioner, critically reflecting on their professional learning experience and gathering evidence to evaluate the innovation they bring to their practice. This module examines relevant educational leadership research and theory and enables students to look for opportunities to apply this firstly to their own context. Students can focus on one area of educational practice of importance in their own context. This is presented to other students to allow for further critical evaluation in order for the material to be able to be presented and applied to a range of school settings. Students devise a final format for their research to improve practice, this could be through devising coaching workshops, larger workshops of professional development or lectures. The reflections and evaluation of this work will form the basis of the final assignment.
Those participating in this Diploma programme will gain an enhanced understanding of what it means to be a pastoral leader in a school today but will also be encouraged to reflect on their own experiences. The programme aims to build on the skills developed on their educational pathways. This course aims to translate educational thinking, theory and research into effective pastoral leadership. It also enables for students new to research to understand how this can translate into effective practice. The programme is concerned with examination of organisational change theory and the application of this in an educational setting. The programme is concerned with the development of critical enquiry and reflection, together with professional knowledge and expertise. This allows for leaders and potential leaders to grow in confidence from having a research-informed approach.
The aims of the programme are:
To understand the conditions for successful organisation change
To be able to critically analyse, engage in and reflect on educational issues, research, philosophies and initiatives
To support better understanding of the needs of vulnerable pupils and to increase skills of school staff to ensure needs are met.
To take responsibility for one’s own learning and study independently
To function as an independently minded professional capable of contributing to wider educational debate
To develop skills in searching for and critically analysing relevant literature in order to plan teacher development materials relevant to their chosen areas of interest
To facilitate sustainable and positive change for the most vulnerable pupils with highly complex needs.
To be able to communicate good practice to fellow specialists and non-specialists.
To synthesise relevant literature and current trends within Education in support of arguments
Upon successful completion of the programme, students may choose to progress onto the MA in Inclusive Leadership. This requires the completion of a Dissertation module delivered and assessed by the University of Buckingham.
This 60-credit module (at level 7) allows for it to be completed in two stages, firstly through studying research methodology, this includes an exploration of the role of the literature review, then through an understanding of the research position and the implication of this for the chosen methodology and the ethical implications of conducting research.
Through completing this module, students not only gain knowledge of the research process itself, they are also able to evaluate other research projects in Inclusive Education and go on to conduct their own small-scale project. This is carried out with guidance from the University and specifically their supervisor. This module introduces students to some of the complexities and challenges of engaging in educational research.
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The online Postgraduate Diploma is delivered by Inclusion Expert over 12 months and is supervised by the University of Buckingham. Please register your interest with Inclusion Expert.