The MA Special and Inclusive Education will develop knowledge of special and inclusive education. Students will be introduced to world-leading theory and research and consider how it links to policy and practice. The MA will appeal to those looking to develop their professional practice or progress to further study about disability, inclusive education, and/or educational policy. The MA also has two specialist routes in Autism and Specific Learning Difficulties.
Modes and duration
Part-time students typically complete three modules in their first year (90 credits) and one module plus the dissertation OR two modules plus report in their second year (90 credits).
Tuition fees (2021/22)
Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Students website: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees. Fees for flexible, modular study are charged pro-rata to the appropriate full-time Master's fee taken in an academic session.
A minimum of a lower second-class Bachelor's degree in a relevant discipline from a UK university or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants will also normally have some related professional experience.
English language requirements
If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.
The English language level for this programme is: Good
UCL Pre-Master's and Pre-sessional English courses are for international students who are aiming to study for a postgraduate degree at UCL. The courses will develop your academic English and academic skills required to succeed at postgraduate level. International Preparation Courses
Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.
Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.
This programme is suitable for international students on a Tier 4 visa - study must be full-time, face-to-face, starting October.
International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.
Select your country:
About this degree
Students will gain a comprehensive and critical understanding of theory and research relevant to special and inclusive education including subject-specific knowledge; intellectual, academic and research skills; and practical and transferrable skills. Through a variety of taught sessions, independent activities and group/individual assessments, students on the programme will graduate with a broad range of knowledge, interpersonal contacts, and skills preparing them to continue work in the field of inclusive education. Anyone interested in either of the two specialist routes should see our Special and Inclusive Education (Autism) MA or Special and Inclusive Education (Specific Learning Difficulties) MA pages.
Students undertake modules to the value of 180 credits. Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MA in Special and Inclusive Education.
The programme consists of two compulsory modules (60 credits), plus two optional modules (30 credits each). Students can then choose to complete either a dissertation (60 credits) or alternatively a report (30 credits), plus one optional module in the area of special and inclusive education (30 credits).
Upon successful completion of 180 credits, you will be awarded a MA in Special and Inclusive Education.
Please note that the list of modules given here is indicative. This information is published a long time in advance of enrolment and module content and availability is subject to change.
MASIE students will take two compulsory foundational modules of 30 credits each.
- Concepts and Contexts of Special and Inclusive Education
- Research Design and Methodology
In addition to the two core modules students take at least one module from the following. Students then choose either one or two further 30-credit optional modules from the list below or, subject to the Programme Leader's approval, modules from elsewhere at the UCL Institute of Education (subject to availability).
Please note that the module Developing SEN Co-ordination: Leading and Managing Change is only available to UK-based students currently working in an educational setting.
- Autism: Research and Practice
- Understanding Specific Learning Difficulties
- Language Development
- Psychology for Special Needs
- Social, Emotional and Behavioural Development
- Developing SEN Co-ordination: Improving Learning and Teaching
- Developing SEN Co-ordination: Leading and Managing Change
- Reading and Spelling Difficulties
Visit the UCL Institute of Education website for more information, including module descriptions, which can be seen by clicking on the module title.
All students undertake an independent research project which culminates in a dissertation of 11,000 words (60 credits) or a research report of 6,500 words (30 credits). Students will work closely with a supervisor who will oversee their self-chosen research project.
Teaching and learning
The MA is taught through blended lectures, group discussions, small group and/or one-to-one tutorials. Compulsory and optional modules are assessed through a range of different assessment types, including a range of written/oral assignments. For some modules students may choose from a range of assignment titles or may be able to negotiate their own title. They will be required to choose to write either a report or a dissertation in the final year of the programme.
Contact hours are module dependent, but each 30 credit module will equate to 300 hours of study time. Each module will include contact with faculty via a range of forums (e.g., individual tuition, whole/small group lectures/seminars).
Details of the accessibility of UCL buildings can be obtained from AccessAble accessable.co.uk. Further information can also be obtained from the UCL Student Support & Wellbeing team: ucl.ac.uk/students/fees-and-funding.
Scholarships relevant to this department are displayed below.
- Full tuition fees and accommodation (1 year)
- Based on both academic merit and financial need
- Tuition fees, stipend, flights (1 year)
- Based on both academic merit and financial need
For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the Scholarships and Funding website.
The programme prepares students for employment in a broad range of areas, for example: as senior leaders in mainstream schools, special schools, or other educational settings; and/or directly supporting children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). Graduates may follow pathways within specialist services for children and young people with SEND or SEND charities. Graduates may choose to pursue a research pathway and/or work in Higher Education. Graduates may choose to work in government and policymaking positions or as consultants.
Students on this programme can broaden their career horizons within the educational settings in which they work (if applicable) and/or develop skills that can be utilised in a wide range of careers (within or outside the field of special education). Students will also develop skills in the areas of personal and time management; oral and written communication; collaborative working; computing and IT; critical and adaptive thinking; problem solving; research and inquiry.
Why study this degree at UCL?
This high-level programme provides students with the opportunity to engage with the latest theory and research on special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) delivered by world leaders in research and teaching. IOE is ranked #1 in the world for education and our team of internationally-recognised tutors (researchers, academics, and professionals) from the Department of Psychology and Human Development (PHD) will provide students with a cutting-edge programme of taught sessions, independent activities and group/individual assessments; all of which will deepen their knowledge, challenge their thinking and enhance their employability. London offers a rich and diverse population so students can focus on neurodiversity within a wide range of individuals and communities.
Students on this MA benefit from a rigorous academic programme. Critical engagement with current research and evidence-informed practice on special and inclusive education provides a thorough grounding for those new to the field. It also challenges the thinking and deepens the knowledge of those with prior (academic, personal or professional) experience in special and inclusive education. Input from a broad range of experts (including people with disabilities, their parents and their educators) ensures strong relevance to practice and the crucial inclusion of insider expertise.
The programme attracts national and international students with rich and varied professional and/or personal experiences; offering a valuable opportunity for networking and collaborative learning. At the end of the programme, students are encouraged to join professional learning networks; to continue their personal and professional development and to provide further opportunities for peer-to-peer learning. The programme, along with the diverse range of events and initiatives provided by our centres of excellence, PHD, the UCL Institute of Education and UCL, offers a transformative experience for students interested in special and inclusive education.
Department: Psychology & Human Development
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Application and next steps
Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.
There is an application processing fee for this programme of £90 for online applications and £115 for paper applications. Further information can be found at: ucl.ac.uk/prospective-students/graduate/taught/application.
Who can apply?
This programme would appeal to those working within education (e.g., teachers, teaching assistants) who have an interest in working with children, young people or adults with special educational needs and disabilities. We particularly welcome those with personal experience of disability (e.g., family members, individuals with disabilities).
For more information see our Applications page.Apply now
What are we looking for?
When we assess your application we would like to learn:
- why you want to study Special and Inclusive Education at graduate level
- why you want to study Special and Inclusive Education at UCL
- what particularly attracts you to the chosen programme
- how your academic and professional background meets the demands of this challenging programme
- where you would like to go professionally with your degree
Together with essential academic requirements, the personal statement is your opportunity to illustrate whether your reasons for applying to this programme match what the programme will deliver.
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