Candidates must hold qualified teacher status. Acceptance on the course of candidates who are not currently teaching hearing-impaired pupils is subject to suitable arrangements being made for them to gain experience of teaching such pupils. Other candidates may be considered at the Course Leader's discretion.
MA / PGDip Educational Studies (Hearing Impairment)
Successful candidates will achieve recognition from the Department for Children, Schools and Families as having achieved mandatory status as qualified teachers of the deaf.
The Postgraduate Diploma in Educational Studies (Hearing Impairment) has been designed for candidates wishing to train as teachers of the deaf. The course is provided in partnership with Mary Hare School which caters for deaf children and is delivered at the school's base in Newbury, Berkshire. For those teachers who are not currently working with pupils who are deaf, individual arrangements are made to provide opportunities for further teaching experience with such pupils.
Teaching takes place on six weekends each year, and is also supported by a range of e-learning opportunities and materials. These teaching weekend sessions are a compulsory part of the course. Students achieve the award through completing assignments, preparing and delivering seminars, undertaking a child study, two periods of school experience, a practical audiology test and a written audiology examination.
The Diploma course is made up of the following six modules:
* Language Development studies recent research in the acquisition of language and explores strategies for investigating and supporting the language development of hearing-impaired children.
* Audiology examines the hearing process and the ways in which this can be enhanced for children and young people with hearing impairment to ensure maximal use of residual hearing.
* Curriculum Access explores curriculum design and delivery with particular emphasis on the implications for the teaching, learning and assessment of hearing-impaired pupils.
* Legislation and Provision outlines the current range of provision for hearing-impaired pupils, including approaches to communication, placement and relevant legislation.
* Family Support and Professional Liaison explores the practical advice and counselling support provided by the teacher of the deaf for families and other professionals, including issues related to Early Support, Every Child Matters and the integrated working agendas.
* Practical Experience includes visits and two blocks of assessed practical teaching experience.
To enable you to build on your prior knowledge of these components, lectures are arranged so that the key areas of audiology and language development are addressed simultaneously during the teaching weekends. The Core Standards and Competencies for specialist teachers of the deaf are incorporated into this course, the lecture programme and, where deemed appropriate, tutorial sessions and discussion during school experience supervision visits ensure all the standards and competencies are addressed and assessed.
Students who register for an MA will follow the programme identified above, but will also complete a Research Methods module and submit a dissertation in Year 3.
Teaching, learning and assessment
Teaching and learning draws on a lecture programme staffed by experienced and nationally recognised practitioners and researchers, and is supported by them. The course opens with an introductory day at the Arlington Centre of Mary Hare Grammar School and continues with a further 11 residential weekends, spread throughout the two-year duration of the course. The professional resources of the school are available to course participants.
A variety of assessment modes are employed; these are appropriate to the topics of study and the range of academic and professional skills that the course is designed to develop. Assignment tasks will also be congruent with the variety of approaches to assessment now found within education and specifically used within support services for hearing impaired children. Assessed work will therefore include evaluative reports, critical essays, practical projects, seminar presentations, group work, portfolio collections and investigative research. Students are required to undertake two periods of practical experience, one of which is at their own workplace.
The high quality of the programme is evidenced by the Ofsted inspection survey of the training leading to mandatory qualifications for teachers of pupils with hearing, visual and multi-sensory impairment:
'The Mary Hare/Oxford Brookes partnership makes a significant contribution to the training of teachers for the mandatory qualification in hearing impairment in the southeast region of the country, with heads of schools and services actively involved in contributing to, supporting, and benefiting from the provision. The provision is of high quality. The course is highly valued by participants and their line managers who consider that the course meets their needs well. Line managers speak highly of the clear focus given to developing the skills required to work with families and the range of associated professionals. Participants report that the course has improved their confidence, knowledge base and skills. The number of participants gaining promotion following attendance on the course reflects these good features.'