Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2018-2019 (archived)

Module EDUC31730: Professional Issues in School Based Education

Department: Education

EDUC31730: Professional Issues in School Based Education

Type Tied Level 3 Credits 30 Availability Available in 2018/19 Module Cap
Tied to X6K114, X7K214, X5K307, X5K207,


  • None.


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • A critical understanding of the key issues related to the development of the professional competence as a teacher.


  • Research evidence in classroom strategies for effective teaching and learning.
  • Managing the teaching and learning environment.
  • The teacher as reflective practitioner, enhancing professional development through detailed examination of personal aims, intentions and practice.
  • Teaching for understanding.
  • Creative dimensions of teaching and learning.
  • Subject and pedagogical bases of learning and teaching.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • By the end of the module students will have acquired:
  • LO1 a critical in-depth understanding of the educational ideas and philosophies relevant to Professional Standards as the foundation of subsequent professional development as teachers;
  • LO2 a critical understanding of the factors which affect teaching and learning across a range of generic educational issues.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • By the end of the module students will have acquired:
  • LO5 the ability to identify and solve problems in specific educational contexts;
  • LO6 the ability to identify and develop the competencies required to be an effective classroom practitioner.
Key Skills:
  • Through their professional portfolio students will demonstrate the ability to:
  • collect and organise evidence related to professional practice in an effective way;
  • communicate ideas effectively, both orally and in writing, to an advanced level;
  • learn independently;
  • reflect on their developing practice;
  • identify key developmental issues for their own practice through self-evaluation
  • apply their subject and pedagogical skills, knowledge and understanding, effectively and reflectively in a contemporary school context.
  • The portfolio should demonstrate their ability to meet the government’s standards for teacher training within the following broad areas:
  • professional attributes;
  • professional knowledge and understanding;
  • i. problem solving
  • ii. evaluation
  • iii. communication
  • professional skills;
  • i. effective planning
  • ii. instructional practices.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • An intensive programme of teaching, mentoring and coaching support, with seminars, practical explorations and individual tutorials will be provided.
  • A structured university programme to develop subject and pedagogical knowledge and understanding through lectures, taught workshops and seminar/tutorial sessions.
  • Learning will also occur through school placements providing practical classroom experience and coaching/mentoring. Use will be made of targeted observations and action plans for development. Both school and University-based staff will engage in this process of support to students. Throughout best practice guidance will be offered through a closely personalised system of support.
  • There will be a range of school placement patterns provided in order to satisfy professional qualification requirements. The mentoring and coach will occur both in school and in the University;
  • Assessment in the form of a professional portfolio will provide the opportunity for students to present the extent to which they have understood and are able to engage critically with the themes and issues covered under the aims of the module. This assessment will also carry the requirement of demonstrating that the professional standards as required by the relevant government agency have been satisfied;
  • Throughout the school placements the students will maintain working files which will contain lesson plans, evaluations and feedback comments from mentors and University tutors as appropriate and in accordance with departmental policy. These files will form the basis of the reflective portfolio.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
School experience/Field work* Minimum: 18 weeks (Primary route) 24 weeks (Secondary route) 90 days (540 hours)(Primary) 120 days (720 hours) (Secondary)
Lectures/Seminars/Tutorials Primary: 20 x 3.5 day weeks Secondary: 14 x 3.5 day weeks Primary: 20 Weeks outside school experience blocks Secondary: 14 Weeks outside school experience blocks 28 hrs p.w. Primary: 560 hrs Secondary: 392 hrs
Preparation & Reading Primary: 120 hours Secondary: 108 hours
Total 1220 hours (Primary) 1220 hours (Secondary)
*Section R2.8 of the TDA standards guidance state: That training programmes are designed to provide trainees with sufficient time being trained in schools and/or other settings to enable them to demonstrate that they have met the QTS standards. This means they would typically be structured to include the following periods of time to be spent in training in school or other settings: A Secondary Graduate QTS programme - 120 days (24 weeks) A Primary Graduate QTS programme - 90 days (18 weeks)

Summative Assessment

Component: Assignment Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Assignment Professional portfolio with a reflective overview. This will be equivalent to 3000 words. The reflective overview will be expected to be not more than 1500 words 100%

Formative Assessment:

Preliminary summary and outline of the assignment above, with additional critical bibliography on reflective practice and professional development to indicate reading undertaken.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University