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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Moray House School of Education : Education

Postgraduate Course: Subject Specialism: English (2) (EDUA11382)

Course Outline
SchoolMoray House School of Education CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits10 ECTS Credits5
SummaryThis course builds on learning in the first year of the programme in subject specialism English. Students undertaking this course will continue to develop a critical understanding of theories of learning, teaching and assessment of English in the upper primary and secondary sector. They will learn how to use theoretical knowledge about subject and pedagogy in English to devise teaching which is designed to meet the needs and interests of diverse learners. The course will be underpinned by the related theoretical concepts of critical pedagogy and critical literacies.
Course description This course builds on Subject Specialism: English(1), providing an opportunity for students to further enhance their ability to make theory-practice connections, acknowledging that learning to teach is an iterative process requiring deep and progressive intellectual and practical engagement.

English teaching in the 21st century is multi faceted , challenging, stimulating and fascinating for the teacher. For the learner successful learning in English is essential to becoming a citizen who can negotiate and act on the their understanding of the many complex, multimodal texts which they encounter each day. A transformative teacher of English can make the difference between someone who is a passive recipient of information and someone who can access and inform their culture, their society and their own life through their ability to deconstruct and construct texts (whatever form or medium of text), and to engage with confident, analytical criticality in discussion and debate in the classroom and beyond.

The OECD report (2015) questioned what was perceived as the lack of focus in Scottish education in terms of the 'pedagogical core', the fundamental experience of learning and teaching . This course seeks to develop teachers of English who are able to make use of their understanding of pedagogical and deep subject knowledge to teach in order to purposefully include and to take account of the diverse needs and interests of learners. Teachers undertaking this course would therefore develop critical and situated awareness of themselves in their role as a teacher - a role which is political, cultural, social and moral and about taking action. To this end the course is underpinned by theories of critical pedagogy and critical literacies.

Students on this course will learn how to critique curricula at policy level which relates to their subject teaching in order to develop purposeful, engaging teaching. Using Friere, Shor, hooks , Janks and more school classroom based texts on critical literacies such as Morgan, students will explore and develop their knowledge and understanding of the following areas of learning and teaching in the English classroom so that they can:

- analyse and critique curricula at policy level and at classroom delivery level within the English subject discipline in order to develop purposeful, engaging teaching for learners from P5 - S6
- learn how to teach about, with and through different kinds of texts, including media texts, paying particular attention to Scottish texts which inform the cultural heritage of children and young people learning in Scottish schools
- learn how to teach the construction of different kinds of texts, including multi modal and digital texts
- learn how to explore the aesthetic within reading and within children and young peoples' own writing, with learners
-develop understanding of assessment within the context of English teaching in the secondary school so that student teachers are familiar with Broad and General and National 4, 5, Higher and Advanced Higher requirements and can implement this within the subject specialism of English
- begin the process of becoming a reflective and reflexive practitioner
This second year of the course will continue learning in the areas outlined above but will utilise different models of teacher reflection as a lens to consider teacher reflection and reflexivity in practice.

Students taking this course will work in collaborative groups in seminars and in directed study time, both in university and in cluster sites. Learning will be problem based and students will be expected to contribute extensively in seminar sessions.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate enhanced critical understanding of the principal theories, concepts and principles related to the teaching of subject specialism (English) in schools.
  2. Demonstrate a critical awareness of current, and at times contested, issues in subject specialism (English education).
  3. Apply critical analysis, evaluation and synthesis of site-based experiences to identify key strengths and areas for development related to personal pedagogical practices within subject specialism
  4. Communicate, using innovative and appropriate methods for a range of academic and professional audiences, their reflections on professional practice and next steps for personal professional development.
  5. Analyse their learning on this course in relation to relevant core concepts of social justice, sustainability, global perspectives, digital and statistical literacies and professional inquiry skills.
Reading List
Garcia, Antera (2013)Critical Foundations in Young Adult Literature Challenging Genres Sense Publishers
hooks, b. (1994) Teaching to Transgress Education as the Practice of Freedom Routledge
Janks, H. (2009) Literacy and Power (Language Culture and Teaching Series) Rutledge
Ellis,V. (2007) Taking subject knowledge seriously: from professional knowledge recipes to complex conceptualizations of teacher development. The Curriculum Journal: Taylor & Francis
McCallum, A. (2012) Creativity and Learning in Secondary English: teaching for a creative classroom Routledge

Thomson, Ian Stimulating Reluctant Writers: a Vygotskian approach to teaching writing in secondary schools English in Education 2012
Uhrmacher, P. Bruce, Bradley, M. Moroye, C. Finding the Balance between process and product through perceptual lesson planning TeachersCollege record volume 115, issue 2 2013
Ellis, S. and Sosu, E. (2014) Closing the Attainment Gap in Scottish Education Joseph Rowntree Trust available at
Zeichner,K. and Lister,P. (2013)Reflective Teaching: An Introduction(Reflective Teaching and the Social Conditions of Schooling Series) Routledge delivering excellence and equity in Scottish education 2016

Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserMrs Lynne Pratt
Tel: (0131 6)51 6425
Course secretaryMiss Ellen Callender
Tel: (0131 6)51 6449
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