Professional Practice degree – MA – Bath Spa University Skip to main content

MA Professional Practice
School of Education
Campus or location
Newton Park and Corsham Court (Newton Park only from 2023)
Course length
One year full time, or two or three years part-time.

Entry requirements

Students are expected to have a good first degree, although we often accept applicants with appropriate experience that we consider sufficient and comparable.

Please contact our admissions team for more information:

A flexible Professional Practice MA suitable for applicants at various stages of their career seeking to develop their own practice.

  • Tailor your module choices and course length to suit your interests and working life.
  • Study educational topics in-depth and choose from a variety of specialist modules.
  • Designed for busy schedules, the Professional Practice MA is suitable for working professionals.

The MA in Professional Practice is suitable for applicants at various stages of their career, whether new to the profession or experienced in the field.

Our aim is to enable you to recognise and defend good professional practice, and to become competent in analysing, evaluating and restructuring your practice in changing circumstances, through engagement with evidence-based practice. 

See also: MA Professional Practice in Higher Education for those teaching in a Higher Education context.

Please use the following links to apply:

What you'll learn


The Master's programme is flexible, and enables individuals to choose from a variety of modules to suit their working circumstances and professional practice.

It will enable depth of understanding and knowledge in areas of practice with which they are already familiar, and develop new areas of practice if required. Individuals will also engage with, and learn about, research methods, either as a taught module or as online learning. This will lead into the Dissertation, in which an extended research project culminating in a substantial thesis will be completed.

Course structure

As this is a flexible Master's programme your options will vary according to full-time or part-time study, and also be influenced by any APL credits you may be granted. Typically, in each trimester, you'll have a choice of modules to choose from.

You may wish to make your module choice decision following a consultation with the Award Leader to ensure a "best fit" for your professional focus and areas of interest. Students typically take a Research Methods module just prior to doing the Dissertation, which is completed as the final module for the MA.

Course modules

This course includes or offers the following modules. Please check the programme document for more information on which modules are core, required or optional.

  • Independent Study
  • Work based Action Enquiry
  • SEN and Inclusion: Autism Spectrum
  • Investigating and Developing Practice
  • Education and Society
  • Research Methods in Social Science
  • Research and the Professional Part 1
  • Research and the Professional Part 2
  • Dissertation
  • Leadership and Practice
  • Education Policy
  • Perspectives of Outdoor Play
  • Theory and Practice of TESOL
  • Contemporary Issues in Inclusive Education
How will I be assessed?

There are no written exams and each module is assessed by coursework. Sometimes assessment is by verbal presentation.

How will I be taught?

The way you’ll study will depend on the route you take through the Master's programme. In most instances, you’ll benefit from face-to-face time with a university tutor as well as undertaking personal study. This may include reading, researching literature and undertaking practical research in your work context.

We’ll also use our Virtual Learning Environment, Minerva, to provide you with online materials.

To find out more about how we teach and how you'll learn, please read our Learning and Teaching Delivery Statement.



Many of our graduates seek new career paths to educational management, training, or in related fields. Some wish to continue their expertise in their professional practice and gain a broader and deeper view of education. Others wish to take their studies further – to PhD level – and seek employment in an academic institution.

Start with a Postgraduate Certificate

If you're not ready for a full Master's, you can develop your interests and deepen your understanding by studying part-time for a Postgraduate Certificate.

A Postgraduate Certificate is 60 credits; you'll do two 30 credit modules and graduate with a Postgraduate Certificate in Professional Practice. On successful completion, you'll have the option to continue your studies to gain a full MA Professional Practice.

Apply now or for more details, contact Róisín Ní Mhocháin:

Adobe Creative Campus

Develop a wealth of indispensable digital skills that you can take into your future career. One of only three Adobe Creative Campuses in the UK, we provide all Bath Spa students with access to the full Adobe Creative Suite, giving you the tools to communicate creatively, whatever your course or chosen professional field.   

Facilities and resources

Where the subject is taught

The award is taught at our Newton Park campus.


You'll have access to Bath Spa University's:


Please note: Students from the EU, EEA and Switzerland are not generally eligible for the UK (Home) fee status. Please refer to the international student rate. Irish citizens and those granted Settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme are eligible for UK (Home) fee status. There are also other circumstances where this may apply: See UKCISA for more information.

UK students full time
Course fees
2023/24 entry £8,210
2024/25 entry Published Jan 2024
2026/27 entry Published Jan 2025
UK students part time

Fees shown below are for part time study over two years, although some courses may be available over longer periods.

2023/24 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 £4,105
Year 2 £4,105

2024/25 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2024
Year 2 Published Jan 2025

2026/27 Entry

Course fees
Year 1 Published Jan 2025
Year 2 Published Jan 2026
International students full time
Course fees
2023/24 entry £15,195
2024/25 entry Published Jan 2024
2026/27 entry Published Jan 2025

Additional costs

DBS (if required)

In the UK, a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check is required to work with children and vulnerable adults. All course participants will need to complete the necessary paperwork before starting their placement for the programme. There is an additional fee required for this process.

Interested in applying?

What we look for in potential students

Students are expected to have a good first degree, although we often accept applicants with appropriate experience that we consider sufficient and comparable.

If English is not your first language, you'll need to provide evidence of proficiency in the English language. The Admissions Team assesses applications individually, but for postgraduate courses we're looking for an IELTS score of between 6.0-7.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each component (Writing, Listening, Reading and Speaking).

How to apply

Please contact our admissions team for more information on applying for this course:

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

The MA Professional Practice is an opportunity for applicants with a Level 7 PGCE to use the credits towards a full MA. 

Accreditation of Prior certificated Learning (APL) can be offered if you have successfully completed previous Level 7 modules at another university. We accept APL for our PG Dip or Master’s qualifications. As a guide, up to a maximum of 60 credits may be credited towards a Master’s Degree and 60 credits towards a PG Dip. We will require a full transcript from the awarding university.

It is also possible to gain accreditation for other kinds of professional developments by compiling an independent study portfolio of professional development (APEL – Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning). For further information about gaining credits in this way please contact

APL only applies if the credits were gained within five years of the start of your MA studies.

Want to apply for this year? 

Many of our postgraduate courses have a limited number of student spaces. To avoid the disappointment of the course being full, we recommend that you apply now.

Late applications (generally those made after 31 July) will only be considered if places remain on the course.

Need more information or still have questions? Contact us to discuss your situation.

Course leader: Dr Richy Cook

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