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Programme & Unit Catalogues

ED60278: International education: philosophy and practice

[Page last updated: 02 August 2022]

Academic Year: 2022/23
Owning Department/School: Department of Education
Credits: 18 [equivalent to 36 CATS credits]
Notional Study Hours: 360
Level: Doctoral (FHEQ level 8)
Modular (no specific semester)
Assessment Summary: CW 100%
Assessment Detail:
  • Assignment (CW 100%)
Supplementary Assessment:
Like-for-like reassessment (where allowed by programme regulations)
Learning Outcomes: As a result of completing this unit, students will be better able to:
(i) understand the role of contrasting value systems in the context of international education;
(ii) relate the value systems and other contextualising factors to the development of different curriculum models in the context of international education;
(iii) consider the application of ideas relating to organisational structures which have developed in national, commercial contexts to the context of international education, and be able to apply them where appropriate; and
(iv) understand the major factors affecting students, teachers and administrators working in international education which arise particularly within that context, and be able to relate these to their own professional experience.

Aims: The Unit aims to provide students with a critical understanding of the following four themes.
(i) the social, economic and political forces which have transformed much of the world into a 'global village' in which human activity increasingly operates across national frontiers;
(ii) the way in which an organisation such as a school or a university both reflects the cultural values of its community and tries to modify them, a potentially conflictual process for an international education institution;
(iii) the structures of organisations in education, in relation to government and commerce which have evolved in response to the process of globalisation; and
(iv) the cultural and professional impact on individuals who work in such international organisations.
Students will explore the implications of each of the themes for the curriculum, the organisation of learning and the leadership and management of education institutions in an international context.

Skills: (i) Apply a systematic and coherent approach to critical analysis, evaluation and synthesis of ideas, information and issues that is well-grounded in existing educational research and literature in the area of international education (intellectual skill)
(ii) Identify, conceptualise and communicate original and well-grounded insights and responses to important issues of educational policy and practice that demonstrate advanced scholarship (professional/ practical skill)
(iii) Identify and address complex and/or emerging issues in international education and make informed judgements in the absence of complete or consistent information (professional/ practical skill)
(iv) Continually develop and enhance participants' own practice in international education through critical reflection and practical action with the aim of improving conditions for the development of all involved in the educational enterprise (professional/ practical skill)
(v) Continually develop and enhance participants' own practice and influence the practice of others in the area of international education through critical reflection and practical action with the aim of improving conditions for the development of all involved in the educational enterprise (professional/ practical skill)
(vi) Use networked learning technologies as a means of developing one's own professional practice and scholarship (transferable skill).

Content: The following areas will be studied in the context of international schools and international education:
The Curriculum
(i) The processes which best address global issues such as conflict resolution and the environment;
(ii) the transmission of values and ideologies associated with different curriculum models;
(iii) the influence of philosophical, religious, political, economic and cultural institutions on the curriculum; and
(iv) the way in which participants and the wider community affect and are affected by the curriculum.
The Organisation of Learning
(i) The effectiveness of different learning styles in the incorporation of global issues in an international curriculum;
(ii) the expectations of people from different cultural backgrounds of the nature of teaching and learning;
(iii) the organisation of learning in formal and non-formal situations; and
(iv) the development of professional competence in the staff.
The Management of the Organisation
(i) The appropriate management responses to the global challenges facing the international community;
(ii) the distinctive values which help create a management culture to support education in this particular context;
(iii) the impact of other international organisations on the management of educational institutions; and
(iv) the challenge of managing coherent policies amongst culturally diverse people.

Programme availability:

ED60278 is Optional on the following programmes:

Department of Education


  • This unit catalogue is applicable for the 2022/23 academic year only. Students continuing their studies into 2023/24 and beyond should not assume that this unit will be available in future years in the format displayed here for 2022/23.
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