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Professional Learning: Teaching Pupils with Severe or Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (PGDip, PGCert)

This programme provides an opportunity to develop and deepen knowledge and understanding of teaching S/PMLD.  Students will examine current research in their field of interest and reflect on the range of interventions available to support the pupils’ needs. 

The course encourages students to identify specific areas of ALN to research and enhance their expertise. They will engage in critical reflection on current practice and explore the evolving developments in our understanding of effective practice. They will develop the confidence to share and discuss ideas using research-informed evidence. The programme aims to establish communities of learning through collaborative projects.


Professional Learning: Teaching Pupils with Severe or Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (PGDip) | £5000 (2 Year part-time)

Professional Learning: Teaching Pupils with Severe or Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (PGCert) | £2500 (1 Year part-time)

Postgraduate Loans Request Information
Contact Name: Sue M. James


Why choose this course?

The course aims to provide practitioners/non-practitioners develop expertise in teaching pupils S/PMLD.

The programme offers an opportunity:

  • To develop practitioner-led research skills in the education of S/PMLD pupils.
  • To advance knowledge and insight into the range and diversity of provision, contributed to the advancement of their knowledge and understanding of teaching pupils with S/PMLD.
  • To establish communities and networks of practitioners/non-practitioners.
  • To build on knowledge and experience to develop innovative approaches in ALN provision.
  • To engage in discussion and exploring current theory and legislation in ALN/SEND.

What you will learn

Course Overview

The course provides opportunities for education practitioners and non-practitioners, to develop research-informed knowledge and understanding of a range of complex learning needs. Through discussion, collaboration, and independent projects, student research will contribute to advance knowledge of teaching pupils with S/PMLD. 

Modules 1 and 2 focus on advancing knowledge of current research and understanding of the historical context for ALN education. There will be an exploration and analysis of alternative pedagogies and multi-agency provisions to support learning. Completion of these modules will achieve PCert award.

Module 3 is a 60 credit research module leading to PDip award. Students undertake an Independent Research Project and write a paper to present at a symposium of their peers and specialists. These insights gained will contribute to the wider understanding of teaching and inspiration for further practitioner-led research of S/PMLD.

Module Topics

The Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) is comprised of two modules and both are compulsory to achieve the award. Each module is 30 credits at Level 7. 

Module 1: Teaching & Learning for pupils with SLD/PMLD (30 credits; compulsory)

Module 2: Diversity of Learning (30 credits; compulsory)

  • To advance their knowledge and understanding of teaching and learning of pupils with S/PMLD.
  • To evaluate methodologies and identify creative approaches for teaching pupils with complex learning needs.
  • To establish communities of learning.

The Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) is comprised of three modules and all are compulsory to achieve the award. Module 3 is 60 credits at Level 7.  

Module 3: Independent Research in SLD/PMLD (60 credits; compulsory)

  • To engage in education research in a specific area of S/PMLD.
  • To share research within the wider learning community.

The Learning Outcomes will be assessed through a mixture of different assignments, portfolio of work and a presentation of a research paper. The learning, teaching and assessment strategy devised for the modules will ensure that the specialist skills are developed and clearly assessed.

The final module is a double module where students present their research at a paper (7,500 words per module word equivalent).

Key Information

Entry Criteria

All courses require:

All applicants will be invited to attend an interview following application.  It is essential that you have a current DBS

Postgraduate courses (Level 7)

You must have an initial degree or equivalent Level 6 qualifications to pursue the postgraduate pathway. 

Career Opportunities

This qualification will:

  • Support applications to work in Special Teaching Facilities, Special Schools and ALN careers.
  • Pathway to progression in ALN teaching.
  • Some credits could be applied to MA Education/ Doctorate in Education degree (within a 5-year time limit)
Additional Costs

There are no additional costs for this course.

Related Courses
Bursary / Scholarship Information

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit our Bursaries and Scholarships section.


Visit our Accommodation section to find out more.

Further Information

Please get in touch with us if you have any questions related to the University or to this course in particular.