MA
2022 start September 

Education: Language and Education

School of Education, Faculty of Social Sciences

On this MA, you'll focus critically and constructively on language acquisition and learning, on the place of language in society and on the impacts that language can have on educational provision. You'll explore key theories and debates in language acquisition and teaching and learning, in how and why languages are patterned in society and in the relationship between linguistic structures and social categories.
Group of postgraduate education students in the students' union

Course description

Designed for anyone interested in languages and education and the role of languages in society, this course covers a very broad field and will appeal to those working in language teaching and learning, both internationally and nationally, whether teaching English as a foreign language/second language, or teaching second or foreign languages. It will also appeal to those fascinated by the world of linguistics and sociolinguistics.

How to apply

You'll need to include a personal statement with your application.

Your personal statement: what to include

Apply now

Modules

The modules listed below are examples from the last academic year. There may be some changes before you start your course. For the very latest module information, check with the department directly.

Core modules:

Critical Issues in Education and Educational Research

This module introduces students to key issues in education and educational research that will underpin their studies, regardless of which pathway they take through the full-time masters programme.

It outlines historical and theoretical approaches to education and introduces the key paradigms of educational research. The module moves on to consider critical issues in education and educational research, drawing on the research strengths of the module team focusing on a range of areas including educational psychology, globalisation, disability and inequalities, enabling the module to provide a foundation for other modules on the programme.

The module thus offers students an opportunity to develop a critical stance towards some of the most pressing issues in educational research in contemporary societies.

30 credits
Language Acquisition, Learning and Pedagogy

This module will explore key theories and approaches in language acquisition, learning and associated pedagogies.

Various theoretical and empirical issues will be addressed together with learner-internal and learner-external factors that influence the processes of second language development in education.

For example, the course provides students with an opportunity to consider critically second language acquisition (SLA), Universal Grammar (UG) and the roles of learner factors such as age, first language and interference.

The theory and application of new technologies in the field are addressed. The application of SLA theory and research to aspects of second language teaching and learning is also explored.

30 credits
Language, Society and Education

The Language, Society and Education module provides students with an advanced understanding of the relationship between linguistic structures and social categories.

It covers key research methods in the interdisciplinary field of sociolinguistics and their application to a range of areas including language and identity, discourse, performance and social interaction, ideologies and social structure, culture and education.


By the end of the module, students will have developed solid theoretical knowledge in a range of research traditions as well as an advanced competence in qualitative research methods for the study of language, society and education.

Students have the opportunity to explore topics relating, to the evolution and transmission of culture, intercultural communication, bi/multilingualism, attitudes to language varieties, voice, narrative and inequality in ordinary and institutional settings, media representations of social worlds, global spreads of language and cultural forms with specific reference to English and new media.

30 credits
The Practice of Research

This module introduces students to the processes involved in designing a research project, conducting the study and completing the research report.

The module focuses on research design, on identifying issues, formulating research questions and choosing appropriate methods to use in particular instances and settings. It explores various approaches to data analysis and outlines issues to be considered in the writing-up process.

It aims to provide students with the skills and knowledge required to complete a dissertation in an education-related field.

30 credits

The content of our courses is reviewed annually to make sure it's up-to-date and relevant. Individual modules are occasionally updated or withdrawn. This is in response to discoveries through our world-leading research; funding changes; professional accreditation requirements; student or employer feedback; outcomes of reviews; and variations in staff or student numbers. In the event of any change we'll consult and inform students in good time and take reasonable steps to minimise disruption. We are no longer offering unrestricted module choice. If your course included unrestricted modules, your department will provide a list of modules from their own and other subject areas that you can choose from.

Teaching

Teaching and learning takes place via lectures, weekly seminars, individual tutorials, discussion, active inquiry and investigations. Regular meetings with a personal tutor support and encourage your learning and understanding.

A weekly tutorial accompanies the taught modules.

Assessment

There are no formal written examinations. Assessment is by coursework and a dissertation.

Duration

1 year full-time

Student profiles

Postgraduate education student, Yan Wu

The School of Education has provided so much support in addition to the excellent course and allowed me to develop a clear idea of my future career path.

Yan Wu
MA in Education: Language and Education

Entry requirements

A good honours degree in a related field is required.

Overall IELTS score of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component, or equivalent.

Pathway programme for international students

If you're an international student who does not meet the entry requirements for this course, you have the opportunity to apply for a pre-masters programme in Business, Social Sciences and Humanities at the University of Sheffield International College. This course is designed to develop your English language and academic skills. Upon successful completion, you can progress to degree level study at the University of Sheffield.

We also accept a range of other UK qualifications and other EU/international qualifications.

If you have any questions about entry requirements, please contact the department.

How to apply

You'll need to include a personal statement with your application.

Your personal statement: what to include

Apply now

Contact

education-admissions@sheffield.ac.uk
+44 114 222 8177

Any supervisors and research areas listed are indicative and may change before the start of the course.

Our student protection plan

Recognition of professional qualifications: from 1 January 2021, in order to have any UK professional qualifications recognised for work in an EU country across a number of regulated and other professions you need to apply to the host country for recognition. Read information from the UK government and the EU Regulated Professions Database.

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