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Enhance the portfolio of practice-led and practice-based research in the field with our Professional Doctorate in Education.

  • Aimed at experienced professionals in all areas of education.
  • Taught by teams of practitioners, scholars, and researchers who are experts in their fields.
  • Particular areas of expertise include teacher education, professionalism, leadership, social justice, and education policy.

Now accepting applications for an October 2019 start

This programme aims to enhance the portfolio of practice-led and practice-based research among those involved in education broadly defined, and develops a framework within which the expertise base of the profession can grow.

The Professional Doctorate in Education is rooted in education, both as an academic discipline, and as a profession. Employability is embedded in the modules throughout the programme. You'll benefit from sector specialist input to the modules, and opportunities to learn from innovative local research projects.

A distinguishing feature of the course is that it allows students access to a network of expert agencies while engaging with the course, and encourages them to establish new contacts within and across the sector.

Course structure

Course overview

This six-year part-time professional Doctorate in Education combines a three-year taught programme with a three-year piece of independent research and a thesis of 50,000 words. You'll have the opportunity to conduct an original piece of empirical research based on your own practice in an educational field of your choice, which will make a new contribution to knowledge.

The course will offer you the opportunity to engage with the latest research in professionalism, early childhood studies, social justice and inequalities in education, education policy, leadership in education, pedagogies, and education philosophy. All of this will be underpinned by a rigorous study of research methods and theories in education.

You'll be encouraged to think, write, and research critically, innovatively, and rigorously. You'll learn how to analyse, critique and innovate in education practice, policy and research. You'll be encouraged to challenge established ideas and concepts and develop your professional and academic skills to the highest level.

Course modules

This course includes or offers the following modules. Please check the programme document (below the main image on this page) for more details on which modules are core, required or optional.

  • Understanding educational research
  • Advanced educational research methods
  • Educational research proposal
  • Policy and professionalism in education
  • Leadership and pedagogy
  • Critical studies in early childhood
  • Education and society
  • Education and globalisation
  • Dissertation

Attendance and timetables

The programme is designed to be completed over six years, with each module delivered over a semester.

Independent study time: 280 hours per semester.

Individualised, subject-specific research training

Each of the taught modules has an assignment equivalent to 5,000 words. You'll also be required to undertake an independent research study of 50,000 words on an approved topic. 


Each module is assessed via formative exercises and tasks, to include group presentations (30 minutes) on selected articles, and class discussions on chosen articles. There will also be a summative assessment in the form of an Assignment (5,000 words) which critically discusses the module content.


Open lectures and seminars

The Institute for Education runs a series of research seminars throughout the academic year, in which staff and postgraduate students present their research. You’ll be welcome to attend these seminars, and there's the opportunity for you to talk about your own research interests within an informal and supportive setting.

Research environment

Where you’ll be taught

Though this course is part-time, some modules will be taught at our Newton Park campus. You'll have access to a wide range of excellent facilities, including:

Staff and supervisors

Key contacts

Charlotte Chadderton, course director
Email: c.chadderton@bathspa.ac.uk
Phone: +44 (0)1225 875463

Course administrator
Email: pgtadmin@bathspa.ac.uk
Phone: +44 (0)1225 875593

Module leaders


UK and EU students part time

Course fees
2018/19 entry £2,200*
2019/20 entry Published Jan 2019
2020/21 entry Published Jan 2020

*This course is offered on a part-time basis, and you can study for up to six years. You'll pay a fee for each year of study, and fees are revised on an annual basis.

Interested in applying?

What we look for in applicants

The EdD is designed for those who are already working in education in a range of contexts. The course is aimed at both professionals and practitioners who would like to advance their own professional development in the areas of research, policy, curriculum development, and professional practice. The course will benefit those looking to improve and develop their own practice, as well as institutional practice or policy.

We would normally expect applicants for this programme to hold a first or upper second class honours degree (or equivalent) from a recognised university, as well as an MA, MEd, or MPhil in a relevant field. Where professional experience is extensive and has involved research practice, this requirement may be waived.

Previous experience of conducting research, or research methods training in the social sciences, is beneficial.

Professional requirements: appropriate professional experience in the practice of policy or a related field. Students in the programme will normally be expected to have at least three years' experience.

English language requirements: at least 7.0 average in IELTS with no lower than 6.5 in any one area.

References: Three references are required. At least two of these should be academic references.

Applicants will be expected to provide a research proposal, which will be assessed for originality, feasibility and rigour.

How are applications assessed?

Applications are considered by at least two specialists in the applicant’s proposed area, who then decide if the applicant should be called to interview. If the applicant is called to interview, a panel of three interviewers is assembled, consisting of a chair, a potential Director of Studies who is an expert in the proposed field, and an academic member of staff from another subject area.

How do I apply?

Begin your application or find out more on our how to apply page.

You can get in touch with our Graduate College at pgradmissions@bathspa.ac.uk.

If you’d like to talk to a member of the course team or arrange a visit, please email: c.chadderton@bathspa.ac.uk.

Admissions service
Phone: +44 (0)1225 875 877
Email: pgradmissions@bathspa.ac.uk

Academic representative: Charlotte Chadderton
Phone: +44 (0)1225 875 463
Email: c.chadderton@bathspa.ac.uk

Website feedback to web@bathspa.ac.uk