Education (Learning, Leadership & Policy)

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Run by Faculty of Social Sciences and Law
Awards available EdD
Programme length Four years full-time
Seven years part-time
Part-time study available Yes
Open to international students Yes
Number of places 25
Start date September 2016

Programme overview

The EdD programme, which carries the same status as a PhD, is designed for ambitious, mid-career education and training professionals whose work requires them to have a high level of research capability.

You can study at your own pace (full or part-time) with our modular programme of intensive two-and-a-half day units taught in Bristol. Teaching is conducted by the distinguished academics at the University's Graduate School of Education - experts with international reputations for research in their field.

The programme attracts high-achieving participants interested in a wide range of aspects of teaching, learning, leadership, management, policy and evaluation. It has recently been updated and restructured to provide a coherent and structured learning experience that supports students to become independent researchers.

Fees for 2016/17

Full time fees


Part time fees


Fees quoted are provisional, per annum and subject to annual increase.

Funding for 2016/17

Further information on funding for prospective UK, EU and international postgraduate students is available from the Student Funding Office.

Further information on funding for prospective UK, EU and international postgraduate students.

Programme structure

The structured programme of six intensively taught units and a 45,000-word dissertation attracts students from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures.

Optional units can be chosen from a broad range, offered on a flexible timetable. For example, the Learning, Leadership and Policy pathway provides opportunities for mid-career professionals to develop and extend their professional skills. A comparative approach, across professions, different types of educational institution and locations - both national and international - enriches opportunities for mutual learning between students. Units include:

Core Units:

  • Understanding Educational Research
  • Conducting Educational Research: Theory, Methodology and Methods

Select 40 credits following compulsory units:

  • Learning
  • Education Policy
  • Leading for Educational Change in Organisational Settings

Select 40 credits from the following optional units:

  • Comparative Research
  • Leading, Managing and Governing the 21st Century University
  • Evaluating Educational Quality and Improvement in Organisational Settings
  • Learning
  • Education Policy
  • Learning and Teaching in the Global University
  • Leading for Educational Change in Organisational Settings
  • Special Independent Study (Double Unit)
  • Published Work (Both Single and Double Units)

You will work individually and in groups with unit tutors, academic advisors and other School colleagues throughout your period of study. During the dissertation stage you will work closely and intensively with a dissertation supervisor.


Entry requirements

An upper second-class honours degree (or international equivalent) normally required; a Masters degree or equivalent qualification in Education; and at least three years' appropriate professional experience.

See international equivalent qualifications on the International Office website.

Application method Online application form
English language requirements Profile E
Further information about English language requirements
Admissions statement Read the programme admissions statement for important information on entry requirements, the application process and supporting documents required.

Research groups

The overarching mission of the Graduate School Of Education is to develop learning and leadership for a changing world through research and teaching that promotes achievement, opportunity and social justice. The aim is to build the intellectual and practical leadership amongst policy makers, practitioners, students and the wider research community that is urgently required to enable education to adapt and thrive in a time of rapid local and global change.

Research in the school is concentrated into six main areas of inquiry and expertise:

  • international and comparative education;
  • assessment and evaluation research;
  • mind, brain, learning and well-being;
  • globalisation, education and societies;
  • mathematics, science, technology enhanced learning and professional development;
  • innovative research methodologies.


Please see our School website for details.

As a doctoral student you will join one of the research centres associated with these key areas of GSOE research and work with staff and students who have similar research interests.


We aim to offer our students the academic, personal  and leadership development opportunities that will equip them to respond to the intellectual, social and personal challenges that they will encounter throughout their lives and careers.

Our goal is to enable our graduates to display the following characteristics:

  • Equipped to demonstrate impact, excellence and distinctiveness in their chosen field.
  • Cutting edge international research expertise in their chosen field.
  • Visionary, imaginative, innovative, reflective and creative.
  • High ideals, ethics and values, including a strong sense of social justice.
  • Highly employable, worldwide.
  • Adaptable with the potential to be successful leaders in work and in the community.

Read more about the journeys of some of our graduates.

How to apply
Application deadline:

Not fixed but early application is advised. 

International students

Find out more about becoming a student at Bristol, and the support we offer to international students.

I chose Bristol because of its outstanding academic reputation. It's reassuring to be taught by people who truly love their subject - their passion becomes contagious.


REF 2014 results

Results are from the most recent UK-wide assessment of research quality, conducted by HEFCE. More about REF 2014 results.

Bristol Doctoral College

The Bristol Doctoral College facilitates and supports doctoral training and researcher development across the University.

Get in touch

Student Services Office Phone: +44 (0) 117 331 4392 Email:

Graduate School of Education
University of Bristol
35 Berkeley Square


Important disclaimer information about our programmes.

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