Award: 30 credits Master in Education (Leadership)
Duration: 14/01/2015 – 15/09/2015
Start Date: 14/01/2015 (Semester 2 and 3)

EDUC4200 Thesis: School Leadership

Completion of a minor thesis of 15, 000 - 20,000 words on a leadership related topic forms the final programme requirement. This will be undertaken under supervision, and will seek to bring together all elements of your learning but with a particular focus on leadership within your school or cluster with the intention of gaining new insights and understanding as well as seeking to impact the quality of teaching, learning and leading in your own and other’s schools.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module, learners will

  1. Demonstrate a systematic understanding of knowledge informed by the forefront of learning in their chosen research field by conducting a literature review in the area.
  2. Demonstrate a critical awareness of current problems in the chosen research field by providing a clear rationale for their research objectives and design.
  3. Demonstrate understanding of a range of standard and more specialised research or equivalent tools and techniques of enquiry appropriate to the chosen research field. 
  4. Demonstrate compliance with recommended ethical guidelines in planning and conducting research.
  5. Demonstrate capacity to select from, scrutinise, reflect upon and critically evaluate data in the context of set research objectives.
  6. Synthesise research findings and critically evaluate in the context of existing knowledge in the chosen field.
  7. Demonstrated insight into the chosen research field by making recommendations that effectively communicate the outcomes and implications of the research.

Guidelines for completion of thesis

On submission of a thesis proposal students will be assigned a supervisor who will act as tutor/mentor until the completion of the thesis.

  • The proposed thesis must,therefore, be manageable within the constraints of:
    • the time allocated for supervision
    • the resources available to the student
    • the length appropriate to a minor thesis
  • Reading and research: the supervisor should suggest initial reading and make further recommendations as the work proceeds; but the student is expected to research the topic him/herself and would normally be expected to go well beyond the supervisor's recommendations in this regard.
  • The supervisor's role is essentially a critical and advisory one.  He/she should advise the student on how to proceed and suggest ideas/avenues for exploration, but it is the student's responsibility also to take initiatives in this regard, and to carry out the work him/herself.  The thesis is the student's, not the supervisor's.
  • If any serious difficulties or obstacles to the completion of the work should arise (such as illness, circumstantial problems, or difficulties over resources/facilities) the supervisor should discuss the matter with the course director, in order to reach an agreed decision about appropriate action.
  • Submission of thesis: the supervisor should check that the thesis is properly presented in accordance with university and college requirement.  The student must be advised that under no circumstances should the thesis be submitted without the approval of the supervisor.  (If for some reason the supervisor is unavailable, the course director may authorise submission.)

How will I be assessed?


% of Final Grade


15- 20000 word thesis




September 2015

Mode of Delivery / Expected Commitment

This is equivalent to 3 x ten-credit modules and requires students to engage in a significant amount of independent reading research design and analysis under the supervision of an assigned supervisor. Meeting with the supervisor are by arrangement and can be face to face or online. One on-campus review day will help consolidate and supervise the students work. The expected workload is as follows:

  • Attendance at seminars on campus: 8 hours
  • Contribution to fortnightly online tutorials: 10 hours
  • Student Autonomous Learning (additional reading, etc.): 300 hours
  • Thesis writing and final submission: 400 hours