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THE UK: Subject Guides

Studying Education in the UK

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Let our interview with Dr Ansgar Allen provide insight into studying education at a UK institution to help you decide which course to pursue at university.


What one aspect of the course you teach do you personally look forward to each year, and why?

I really look forward to learning with students during the first module. This module draws from the huge range of expertise that our students come with. This is a truly international programme, and it is fascinating to explore relationships between educational approaches, different national, social and political contexts, and their philosophical underpinnings.


At the end of the first module, students work in groups to put together a presentation in which they offer a unique perspective on questions like: What does education do? What is education for? And how should we research it? These presentations are consistently outstanding and a pleasure to be part of. The answers to these questions are far from self-evident, and I am always impressed by how students draw from their discussions, the lectures and readings, and their own prior experience to create truly insightful and unique responses to each question.

Tell us a bit about the faculty or staff in the department, and where they come from.

Education is an exciting field to work in simply because it is so broad in what it covers. It encompasses a range of disciplines including: sociology, politics, history, philosophy and psychology, to name but a few! Students on the masters will, therefore, get to meet a wide range of people working in different areas using different research approaches based on different research philosophies. For that reason, it is a great place to explore and develop your interests, knowing that you will be supported whichever direction you take them in.


Why is it an exciting time for prospective students to move into your field?

Education has always been an exciting field to study, as it lies at the core of social relations and societies. To understand how education works is to investigate how societies function and reproduce themselves. Education has, though, been given a particularly important role in today’s society, and this is something that we will critically investigate during the course.


It is promoted more and more, as the solution to economic and social ills. For this reason, to study education is to investigate the problems that face contemporary societies, how those problems are posed, and how they are expected to be solved. Education occupies a unique and problematic position here. It is held up as the great panacea, and yet the educational endeavour itself is far from unproblematic. It truly is a fascinating area to study!

Can you give a few examples of the roles and positions which graduates have gone onto?

A degree in education is a qualification that demonstrates you have mastered a broad range of skills. For this reason, graduates go on to roles and positions that are both within education and beyond. Our graduates have gone on to work as teachers and in related professions. They have occupied posts, in education ministries and other government departments, and have worked in businesses related to education. Many graduates go on to further, doctoral level study, using the research expertise they have generated during the masters.


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Study in the UK


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