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Masters in Education?

Discussion in 'Professional development' started by lillipad, Aug 12, 2011.

  1. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    Can someone explain to me the process for beginning a masters please? I'm so confused!

    Firstly, do I need to ask my head if I can do it? Or can I just register and do it in my own time?

    Next, how do i know which one to do and which units to do?

    How is the open university for masters courses?

    Sorry if these questions seem silly, I can't seem to find answers on their website!
     
  2. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    Can someone explain to me the process for beginning a masters please? I'm so confused!

    Firstly, do I need to ask my head if I can do it? Or can I just register and do it in my own time?

    Next, how do i know which one to do and which units to do?

    How is the open university for masters courses?

    Sorry if these questions seem silly, I can't seem to find answers on their website!
     
  3. Middlemarch

    Middlemarch Star commenter

    Why would you need to ask the head? If it's in your own time, you can do what you like.
    How do you know which one to do? No-one can answer that for you, it's assumed that anyone intelligent enough to undertake a master's degree is bright enough to work out what they're interested in learning. Have you looked yet at the courses run at universities near you and the OU? Make a list of courses you like the sound of, then weigh up the pros and cons of each one for your particular situation.
    How is the OU? Horses for courses. It's mostly distance learning, which suits some but wouldn't suit others. I got a lot out of going regularly to tutorials and seminars with other human beings for both my higher degrees (the first was an MA I did after I'd been teaching a year. It was in my teaching subject and entailed attendance two nights a week for two years.)

     
  4. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    Thanks for your reply


    I'm not sure why i'd need to ask! Just wondered if because some of the studies would presumably be relating to pupils and my practice in the classroom!?


    The second question, well no no one can, but I wasn't sure whether there are certain parts that are more desirable than others with regards to getting jobs in the future. (Maybe didn't phrase that one well!)

    I like the idea of the OU because I wouldn't have to dash off to places. The nearest provider to me is an hour and a half away you see, so having to go after school to a university and travelling for that length of time doesn't fit in with my life overly well, however I can see the benefits of going to actual seminars.
     
  5. I've just been accepted to do my Masters, if you want to do a Masters in teaching and learning, for example, you may well need to check with your Head as often you are required to base your research in your classroom/practice. Obviously if it isn't a requirement to undertake any classroom research then it is purely a personal matter.
    I have friends who swear by the OU courses and really enjoy them. I chose my Masters course (Oxford) due to the scope of modules I could take and the way they matched up to the interests I developed during my degree. I looked at lots of different courses, as even those that broadly matched in terms of course title varied wildly in terms of content. My course is run at weekends so I have the best of both worlds, the benefits of physical attendance without causing pressures on my working week. Lots of the 'Teaching and Learning' type courses are run like this as they are designed for working teachers.
     
  6. Middlemarch

    Middlemarch Star commenter

    Ah, I see. Speaking as an experienced head, I can safely say that there is no real advantage jobs-wise to having a master's degree - it's your ability as a teacher plus the additional skills, knowledge and experience you can bring to any given school that count.
    Do a master's for learning's sake. Choose the mix of good course plus accessibility (clearly important in your case, as the nearest centre you could attend is some distance), but don't rule out a course you can attend if it's the best - and as indicated, some run at weekends and in school holidays, making your attendance more viable.
    Look carefully at which *cough* institution is offering the course. I've had young staff do (so-called) master's which only entail a small amount of work and clearly aren't worth the paper they're written on. A good course is a lot of work and is challenging!
     
  7. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    This is what I wondered... Is it more a matter of politeness than 'asking permission'?

    Ok well i would be doing it more for me and to learn more than for job purposes (Given that I have a job anyway).... That is good advice to look at the institution, but how can I tell which ones are better than others? Because having looked at a few in this area, none of them give you any kind of hints as to how demanding the course is. I mean I could search for peoples reviews and recommendations, but it's surely quite difficult to know until you've been there! My previous university has a fab reputation, but my experiences there were the exact opposite you know?!
     
  8. alex_teccy

    alex_teccy New commenter

    I did a masters a few years back. My headteacher was kind enough to give me one day paid leave to go to college and for studies! My thesis involved action research at my school, with the kids. Being a teacher at the same time really helps as it gives you access to a school and there are lots of areas to study, do thesis (thesi ?) on in education, particularly IT.
     
  9. I'm currently doing my MA in Education at Edge Hill University. It's part-time with one 5000 word assignment due per term (3 per year). Once you have 120 Credits you take the compulsory Thesis to get you to the 180 and the MA is yours. You also have the option of 'cashing in' your credits at the 60 and 120 stages for a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (perhaps you did a GTP/SCITT) or for a Postgraduate Diploma in Education.
    As for the modules - they've got a great selection. As for choosing them - it's up to you!
    I'm really enjoying it and getting a lot out of it. It's distance learning and the Blackboard system they use is great. There's a lot of discussions during each section of the module, with several modules per assignment. The support from the tutors is great. They also run a partnership with the ATL which gives you subsidised fees if you are a member of the union.
     
  10. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    Hi thanks for your replies. The Edge Hill University- do you have to attend tutorials and things like that? Given that it's a very long way from myself in sunny Somerset, I can only consider distance learning, or OU or travelling for an hour and a half to reach tutorials!

    How do you find writing for a masters? I did my degree a good 4 or 5 years ago now, so am a bit anxious about moving to writing at a higher level when i'm a bit out of practice. I would get books and things with support and advice, but don't want to take it on to find that it's out of my capacity!!
     



  11. The Edge Hill course is online distance learning although
    there is the option of attending face-to-face taught modules if you want to.
    For me, it&rsquo;s been great, especially as I&rsquo;m in London.</font>


    As for the support, as I said, previously, it&rsquo;s second to
    none. I was surprised when sitting my first module and received a phone call
    from the module leader who said she likes to call her students who are distance
    learning and discuss how they find the course and of they need any additional
    support etc. All of the materials are provided online (journal articles etc)
    and you are given access to the Edge Hill Online Library.</font>


    With the writing, I find it ok, but again, there is support
    if required and the tutors are happy to go over your work with you, refine
    assignment questions, review draft work etc.</font>


    In all, it has been and still is great for me. There&rsquo;s also
    a great online community of other students following the distance learning
    modules and is a great source of discussion, encouragement and support.</font>






     
  12. lillipad

    lillipad New commenter

    Hi that's great! Thanks :) I will def look into it, although being so far away does concern me slightly because I couldn't attend even if I did want to!

    Last question - if you find you need extra reading materials, in a 'normal' University you go to the Library- what do you do with distance learning? The OU says it gives you all you need, but i'm assuming you would be expected to go beyond that and if you don't have a library, what do you do? Surely you don't just buy the books? thanks :)
     
  13. I must say that during the two modules that I&rsquo;ve sat (I&rsquo;m
    currently on my third), I&rsquo;ve never felt the need to travel to any of the live
    lectures/seminars. When you choose the online modules, everything is catered
    for in the Blackboard VLE. Just like the OU.</font>


    The reading materials for the course are all provided and if
    you want to read around the subject are you have access to the online library,
    journals etc. Within the modules (those that I&rsquo;ve sat) you formulate your own
    assignment question based around your own practice so any books that you have
    which relate to teaching in your area will also be of help. I find some of the
    books I got for my PGCE year particularly useful.</font>


    When I was looking at starting the MA last September, I had
    two institutions in mind for the distance learning - the OU and Edge Hill. With the OU, each
    module is worth between 30-60 credits (180 required for MA) but there are a
    number (between 3 and 6) of assignments due in each module. With Edge Hill each module is worth
    30 credits but with only one assignment due at the end. This, and the fact that
    the ATL partnership means I only pay for my dissertation/thesis module seemed
    like the best option.</font>
     
  14. i have been thinking about completing an MA for a while now. I understand there are two types of MMAs - research based and course based. can anyone point me in the direction of course based MMAs with distance learning please?
     
  15. sorry meant, either research or taught. It is taught I am more interested in. thanks
     
  16. The course I've enrolled on is taught - Oxford. I know my 'old' Uni, Gloucs, do a taught Masters. If you look at courses that are 'teaching and learning' or similar then they are likely to be taught and accessible for practicing teachers who work full time.
     

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