Education Studies and Philosophy and Ethics

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How to Apply

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A dynamic course for those interested in all aspects of education.

  • Flexible routes through the course – focus teaching, international education or youth and community work.
  • Wide range of opportunities to gain expertise and experience including placements.
  • Our Institute for Education is rated outstanding by Ofsted.

“This experience really helped me consider what I wanted to do – I knew I wanted to help educate children, but I hadn't considered many of the aspects that have been presented to me in the past two years.”
– Megan Hinton, Education Studies student

Why study Education Studies?

We prepare you to work with learners of all ages within the education sector and beyond. You’ll graduate with the knowledge and skills to work in educational and training advisory roles in a range of organisations including businesses, local authorities, non-government organisations, charities, museums, art galleries and libraries.

We believe that education is about change and we hope that you are coming into it to be an active participant. We also want you to be a thoughtful and informed citizen who knows about the world and the society in which you live.

Course structure

You’ll gain knowledge and understanding of:

  • the diversity of learners and the complexities of the learning process;
  • debates about the curriculum and its content;
  • the development of schooling, teaching and education policy in the UK and internationally;
  • the wider economic, political and socio-cultural contexts of education
  • research methods used in education; and
  • the impact of inequalities in gender, race, class and disability.

In addition to this you’ll gain skills that will make you attractive to employers. You’ll learn to present your ideas confidently in a variety of forms, use ICT for various professional purposes and work collaboratively.

Modules

  • Year 1
    We’ll teach you the basic principles of education. You’ll gain an understanding of how we most effectively think and learn.
    In addition you can tailor your studies to your interests in areas such as primary teaching; early childhood studies, childhood narratives; philosophy for children and international education.

  • Year 2
    The focus on year two is on a placement in an educational setting. You’ll complete assignments around your experiences. This leads towards a piece of research in an area negotiated by you.
    Current optional modules include: understanding classrooms; learning through drama; literacy learning; and supporting learners with additional needs.

  • Year 3
    You’ll write a dissertation, balancing independent work with one-to-one support. We’ll give you flexibility in what you do and how you go about it. You can choose to go into an educational setting and carry out research or undertake library-based study.
    Optional modules include: teaching and professionalism; learning and mathematics; supporting a dyslexic learner; and creativity, ICT and learning.

  • Integrated MA
    If you’re interested in this course, and like the idea of combining undergraduate and postgraduate study, we offer an integrated MA option. You’ll follow the structure of the Education Studies course in your first two years, before advancing to master’s level study in your final years.

Course assessment

You’ll be assessed through coursework. There are no exams.

Assessments could include essays, group presentations, research-based reports and portfolio-based work. We’ll provide you with regular feedback on how well you are doing and give you regular guidance on how to improve your skills, knowledge and understanding.

Study abroad

You’ll have the opportunity to study in a wide range of locations around the world, by taking advantage of our Erasmus+ and Exchange programmes.

Some of our students complete educational placements as part of our international education modules. In your first year, you’ll have the opportunity to study in Spain; in year two you can study in Zambia; and in your final year you can travel to Nepal. Alternatively you can arrange your own international placement.

Teaching methods

Teaching is through a mix of lectures, seminars and individual tutorials. Seminars are usually more informal than lectures – they are opportunities for you to discuss, ask questions and get involved in activities and debates. In year one your minimum timetabled time will be 12 hours per week.

You’ll be taught by experienced and respected university staff. In years two and three they’ll introduce you to their specialisms and research interests, through a range of optional modules. You’ll also benefit from visiting speakers – these include headteachers, educational advisers, specialist researchers and international visitors.

You can hire out equipment using SISO, Bath Spa University’s free equipment loan service. We provide a huge variety of equipment, from cameras to laptops.

Teaching quality excellence

22/24 in a Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) assessment.

Application method

All full time applications are through UCAS.

Course enquiries

Please email admissions@bathspa.ac.uk.

Entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry to our undergraduate programmes. The main ones are listed below:

  • A Level - Grades BCC-CCC accepted.
  • BTEC- Extended Diploma grades Merit, Merit, Merit (MMM) preferred in a related subject.
  • International Baccalaureate - A minimum score of 26 points with evidence of an interest in Education.
  • Access to HE courses - Typical offers for applicants with Access to HE will be the Access to HE Diploma or Access to HE Certificate (60 credits, 45 of which must be Level 3, including 30 at merit or higher) accepted in addition to evidence of an interest in Education.

English Language Requirements for International and EU Applicants

IELTS 6.0 - for visa nationals, with a minimum score of IELTS 5.5 in each element.

Career opportunities

Education Studies will provide the basis for you to work with learners of all ages in different settings and contexts. You may choose to work in educational and training advisory roles in a range of organisations including local community , youth clubs, businesses, local authorities, non-government organisations and charities, museums, art galleries and libraries.

As well as going on to study for the PGCE our graduates have been recruited by Nottingham Trent International College, Explore Learning, the NHS and many schools and Local Authorities working in Educational roles such as tutors, trainers and Higher Level Teaching Assistants.

You’ll also be able to apply for PGCE courses in teacher training – but if you know at this stage that you want to be a teacher you should consider our primary or secondary teaching pathway.

Work placements, industry links and internships

Placements occur in each year of the programme. In year two there is a compulsory placement for all students of Education Studies in an educational setting or school.

Optional modules provide further placement opportunities for you to work with young people both locally and internationally. The Institute for Education Partnership Office will arrange each placement for you. We try to ensure you are located within a reasonable distance from where you live; however, you should normally expect to travel using your own or public transport.

Previous students have also worked with charities, youth centres, and third-sector organisations as well as schools and early years settings.

What students say...

Student Profile: Kia Prescott, International Education

“The course has made me question all of my opinions I held before. Studying International Education has given me a better knowledge of geography, countries, cultures, global issues, politics and world history, all of which has given me a wider base and has helped in all my modules. This year there is a study trip to Zambia for students on the international module, and it will be the perfect opportunity to gain first-hand experience of education abroad.

Although the majority on the course want to be teachers it is understood that there are some who don’t, and this is catered for. I have a great interest in other countries and cultures, and I have not completely decided if I want to teach abroad yet – but Bath Spa are enabling me to keep my options open.”

Truth, knowledge, meaning, reality – ask and answer crucial questions with this course.

  • Global – study philosophy from Western and Eastern perspectives
  • Contemporary – explore current debates, dilemmas and approaches
  • Applied – use philosophical concepts in real time, on real world projects

“I have been challenged, supported, and inspired during my time here ... My way of thinking has been changed by what I've studied, and I can happily say that I have become a confident critical thinker, and a more thoughtful human being.”
– Jessica Tamsin Milton, Philosophy with English Literature student

Why study Philosophy and Ethics?

 This Philosophy and Ethics course explores the assumptions, beliefs and values which shape human behaviour and our responses to it. You’ll explore our relationships with the natural world and our attitudes towards the past and in the present.

The course addresses the key questions which underpin all academic disciplines and concepts, so combines well with other subjects, contributing to your confidence in tackling them.

You must study another subject with Philosophy and Ethics; it’s offered as a Major, Joint or Minor component of a Combined Honours award. You can choose from a wide range of disciplines and build expertise in a related area or from a different perspective. Popular combinations include Psychology, Geography, History and Creative Writing. If you would like to take this with Study of Religions, you should apply for Religions, Philosophy and Ethics.

Course structure

Rather than teaching philosophy primarily as a history of ideas – although we do explore this – we focus on the application of current philosophical thinking in contemporary settings and circumstances. You’ll consider our responses to environmental crisis, for example, or questions of identity, belonging, roles and responsibilities.

We consider Western philosophical and ethical perspectives, and introduce you to the systems of thought of India and China. This mix and inclusiveness makes our Philosophy and Ethics course particularly distinctive.

Modules

  • Year One
    We introduce you to the principles of philosophical and ethical enquiry. We’ll equip you with some basic methods to philosophically analyse and critically examine core concepts in epistemology, metaphysics and ethics. There is an optional module in global religions and philosophy which looks at major traditions, movements and key thinkers.
  • Year Two
    You’ll focus on philosophy in the Indian and Chinese traditions. Optional modules explore ethics within humanist and religious traditions, medical ethics and social justice, and environmental politics and nonhuman rights.
  • Year Three
    You’ll bring together and develop philosophical ideas through the study of morality, identity, or gender. There are opportunities for in-depth study through a dissertation or an employment related project.

Course assessment

Assessment is mainly through coursework such as essays, projects, presentations, or online discussion.

Study abroad

Our students make good use of the opportunities to study abroad through Erasmus and other programmes, usually in the second year, with one of our many partner universities. You’ll be able to find out more about this during your first year, including meeting up with students who have already benefited from the experience.

If you opt to join one of the study abroad programmes, you might find yourself in Denmark, Spain, Australia or North America. We have developing partnerships with universities in China and the Far East.

Field trips

Fieldwork and visits are an integral part of the course. We visit religious communities, mosques, temples, gurdwaras and churches.

Teaching methods

Our focus is on ‘doing philosophy’ and developing your confidence and capacity for philosophical analysis and debate. We’ll support you through lectures and seminar work, as well as individual tutorials and support.

Special projects in years two and three and the dissertation in year three provide opportunities for independent work which builds on your own interests, adds new dimensions to your thinking, or relates to plans for future careers and personal development.

Application method

All full time applications are through UCAS

Course enquiries

Please contact our Admissions team (see above)

Entry requirements

260–300 UCAS Tariff points.

Career opportunities

Philosophy and Ethics develops many skills valued by employers such as clarity and precision in thinking, the ability to recognise unnoticed assumptions, the expertise to present a strong case, and to see the ethical issues involved in everyday decisions. Graduate careers for which Philosophy is good preparation include: law, civil service, local government, journalism, financial institutions, management, and IT. Some of some of our students have gone on to teach Religious Education, Philosophy and/or Citizenship in secondary or primary schools, where there is a shortage of specialists. Others have gone on to further academic study.

Since 2010, employers such as Global Xchange. Ethicall, Citizens' Advice Bureau and Birmingham University have recruited graduates from this course. Students have also gone into roles including Healthcare Assistant, Fundraiser,  Children's Home Activities Coordinator and Assistant to the Communications Director.

What students say...

Lindsay Horler, Philosophy & Ethics with Study of Religions, Year 3:

“I chose to study this particular course because I was interested in studying Eastern as well as Western philosophy, and Bath Spa is probably the only University in the UK which offers such an in-depth enquiry into Eastern philosophical thought. While studying Philosophy & Ethics with Study of Religions at Bath Spa I have not only enhanced my intellectual skills, but I have also developed as a person. By thinking critically about philosophical ideas from Anglo-American, European and global perspectives, I have been able to think critically about my own philosophical beliefs.

What I enjoy most about Bath Spa University is that I can speak to my course tutors whenever I have questions to do with my course, or anything else for that matter.”