The MA in Higher Education Practice ( MA-HEP) is a professional development course primarily aimed at early-career academics. As such it forms part of the probation process for newly-appointed lecturers. It is flexible to meet the needs of participants.
Most lecturers on probation are required to complete the course to Certificate level, depending on their prior experience. The Postgraduate Certificate in Higher Education Practice (PGCERT) is awarded on successful completion of three modules. Participants can continue to Diploma level by successfully completing a further three modules. Finally, to achieve the MA a dissertation is required.
The programme is offered jointly by CSED and the School of Education, and The Higher Education Academy (HEA) accredits the course as part of their professional recognition scheme – further information is available on their site. This leads to becoming an HEA Fellow.
The programme also is aligned with the HEA Professional Standards framework – see: http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/ukpsf
Each module runs annually and modules may be taken concurrently, although this will depend on individual priorities. Participants take the first three modules – the PGCERT (see below). The pace of progress through the course is a matter for the individual in consultation with his/her School and the MA-HEP course team, but it is usual to start with Modules 1 and 2.
The modules are as follows:
Module 1: Exploring the Academic Role
Module 2: Evaluating Teaching
Module 3: Beyond Blackboard: Enhancing your Digital Practice
Module 4: The Role of Research and Scholarship in Teaching and Learning
Module 5: Reflective Project in Teaching Practice
Module 6: Reflective Project in Academic Practice
The course comprises a number of sessions (or short courses) that relate to particular modules, and which are only open to MA-HEP participants. Also available are CSED short courses concerned with research practice, learning and teaching, administration, and personal development. A number of these are highly recommended in the first year, and some form part of modules that may be taken later. Such courses are also open to others.
Participants use the first year of the course to reflect on and enhance their fundamental teaching skills. This will include activities such as observation of their teaching by their mentor, and attendance at short courses offered through CSED. For those with less experience in teaching before moving into a lecturing role, sessions from Developing Teaching Skills: A Training Programme for Postgraduate Teaching Assistants may be particularly useful.
For further details on the MA in Higher Education Practice, please consult the MA-HEP Handbook available below.