IOE - Faculty of Education and Society


Q&A with Andrew Deane

Andrew Deane was an Applied Educational Leadership MA student, class of 2021. He talks to us about his experience studying at IOE.

Andrew Deane, Applied Educational Leadership MA student, class of 2021. Image permission: Andrew Deane.

Why did you choose to study your programme and what made you choose IOE?

IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education and Society has ranked #1 in the QS World Rankings by Subject since 2014, and I wanted the challenge of an outstanding institution. Secondly, their Master’s programme in Educational Leadership was applied rather than theoretical, and this allowed me to integrate my studies with my practices. Thirdly, the degree was online asynchronously, which meant I could learn while I was still working at an international school in Tokyo.

What did you enjoy most about your programme?

The programme was intellectually rigorous and state of the art.

I had grown cognitively lethargic in the 25 years since I left university, but my professors and coursemates pushed me to think deeply and challenged my outdated assumptions and biases.

I reacquired academic skills and the desire to effectively question and change current practices in myself and in my school. I particularly enjoyed debating theories around case studies and exchanging problems and practices with fellow professionals from around the world. 

What is the most valuable takeaway from your time at IOE?

I am perhaps unusual in that I have decided to remain in the classroom, using the knowledge I acquired from my programme to become a teacher-leader and an inspirational leader.

My fundamental understanding of leadership was transformed, especially in the areas of service, community and environment, and this impacts my daily practice.

How have you applied the learning from your degree in your job?

My school faces a number of challenges which cause friction and conflict. I can appreciate the difficulties faced by our board and our administrators, but I can also understand teachers' perspectives, students' frustration, and parental incomprehension.

I use what I have learned to forge connections between competing agendas and facilitate dialogue.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I love the relationships I have with colleagues, students and parents. I love the variety of challenges and the constant demand to improve our educational offerings. I love drawing out potential in others and pushing myself. I am often exhausted, but every day brings at least some small achievement. Most of all, I know that what we are doing is deeply meaningful.

Last updated 13 March 2023.