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ED50422: Education policy: society, politics and the economy

Follow this link for further information on academic years Academic Year: 2013/4
Follow this link for further information on owning departmentsOwning Department/School: Department of Education
Follow this link for further information on credits Credits: 12
Follow this link for further information on unit levels Level: Masters UG & PG (FHEQ level 7)
Follow this link for further information on period slots Period: Semester 2
Follow this link for further information on unit assessment Assessment: CW 100%
Follow this link for further information on supplementary assessment Supplementary Assessment: Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Follow this link for further information on supplementary assessment Supplementary Assessment: Supplementary assessment information not currently available (this will be added shortly)
Follow this link for further information on unit rules Requisites:
Follow this link for further information on unit content Description: Aims:
The aims of the unit are:
To provide students with an understanding of:
* Perspectives on education policy, in particular those provided by social theory and political economy;
* Key theoretical debates within the field of education policy, particularly those concerning different interpretations of the relations between the state, society and education.
To enable students to:
* Critically analyse policy issues from a theoretically informed perspective;
* To apply these analyses to extant and past policies as well as to the development of policy scenarios.

Learning Outcomes:
At the end of this unit the student will be able to:
* Apply and critique the main theories on the relations between education, society and the state;
* Identify the different ideologies that underpin education policies;
* Recognise the different supra/sub/national and local forces that are at play in the making of education policies;
* Identify and reflect upon the intended and unintended consequences of different education policies.


* Critically engaging with literature (T/F/A)
* Analysing and interpreting findings (T/F/A)
* Identifying and categorising concepts (T/F/A)
* Developing a logical argument (F/A)
Key Skills
1. Make critical use of the literature of the field of Education (T/F/A).
2. Make critical use of professional experience in the field of Education (T/F/A).
4. Analyse, interpret and critique findings and arguments (T/F/A).
9. Demonstrate self-direction and originality in tackling and solving problems (T/F).
10. Evaluate research and variety of types of information and evidence critically, also making informed judgments in the absence of complete data (T/F/A)
12. Contribute to professional debate in the field of education (F).
13. Act autonomously in planning and implementing tasks at a professional level (F).
14. Communicate their conclusions clearly to specialist and non-specialist audiences (T/F).
15. Evaluate their own academic and professional performance (T/F/A).
16. Manage change effectively and respond to changing demands (F).
17. Manage time, prioritise workloads and recognise and manage personal emotions and stress (F).
18. Develop new or higher level skill, for example in information technology (T/F/A).

The unit will address the following areas; some of these will be individual sessions while others are likely to be combined in one session or to appear across more than one session:
* The ideological underpinnings of education policies: consensus and conflict views of education and the state; neo-liberalism; political economy.
* Conceptualising policy: theoretical approaches to education policy analysis, including feminist and post-structuralist perspectives.
* The relations between theory and evidence - is a policy science possible?
* The politics of education policy making.
* Researching educational policy: numbers and narratives.
* Globalisation, the state and education policies.
* From the global to the local: the impact of policy on educational practices.
* Education and the economy: relations between education and the labour market; skill formation policies.
* The role of education in citizenship formation.
* Current issues in educational policy.
Follow this link for further information on programme availabilityProgramme availability:

ED50422 is Optional on the following programmes:

Department of Social & Policy Sciences
  • THSP-AFM13 : MSc International Public Policy Analysis (Full-time)
  • THSP-APM13 : MSc International Public Policy Analysis (Part-time)

* This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2013/14 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2014/15 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2013/14.
* Programmes and units are subject to change at any time, in accordance with normal University procedures.
* Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.