Moray House School of Education

Teachers as Agents of Change

The course explores the meaning and practical implications of teachers’ acting as agents of change through ten flexible online and face-to-face sessions at Moray House School of Education.

The course provides participants with opportunities to engage in discussions with international peers about teachers as agents of change. You will have the chance to conduct a professional inquiry or a real change project in your school, where appropriate.

In Scotland, teachers are described as ‘prime agents of educational change’ (Teaching Scotland’s Future) in some of the key policy documents, such as Curriculum for Excellence and Getting It Right for Every Child. All teachers are expected to contribute to the different change agendas such as closing the ‘attainment gap’ or promoting learning for sustainability and social justice. They are also required to provide evidence of such contributions in their practice to meet the General Teaching Council Scotland (GTCS) Professional Standards.    

Course Description

Teachers as Agents of Change course provides an opportunity for teachers to grapple with what it means to be an agent of change and what this might look in their school. It draws on international research to consider how different policy and social contexts shape teachers’ practices and ways of working with other colleagues, families, or other professionals, to create and sustain collaborative, inclusive school cultures. 

The participants will be able to: 

  • Engage with research and literature to consider how it relates to their own beliefs, practices, and contexts for exercising their teacher agency within and beyond classrooms  
  • Engage in discussions with international peers to consider how different school, policy and social contexts can create both opportunities and barriers for teacher agency  
  • Use their coursework to analyse particular practices and consider the needs and opportunities for change  in the context of their own work
  • Engage in professional reflection and use evidence of such reflection for the Professional Recognition and Update by the GTCS.

Course Format

The course is part of our MSc Inclusive Education programme accredited by the General Teaching Council Scotland. See the full Masters-level course details.

It includes 5 face-to-face sessions, which are recorded and made available to students who are not able to attend. Participants are also expected to engage in reading and posting their reflections on a discussion board in another 5 online sessions, arranged flexibly to suit participants’ availability.

Timetable

The five face-to-face sessions will be held every second Monday throughout the semester in St Leonard's Land Room G4 as follows:

  • Monday, 24th September from 4-6pm
  • Monday, 8th October from 4-6pm
  • Monday, 22nd October from 4-6pm
  • Monday, 5th November from 4-6pm
  • Monday, 19th November from 4-6pm

Who is this course for? 

This course is for:

  • Practicing or future classroom teachers  
  • School staff in formal or informal leadership roles 
  • Education professionals who support teachers in various other roles
  • Education professionals interested in conducting inquiry projects (individually or in collaboration with University researchers)

Course participants will be part of the international postgraduate community which offers structured academic support, e.g. through group tutorials or seminars, and opportunity to access online materials and University library materials via visiting student status.

Participants who have engaged actively with the course will receive a certificate of completion which can be used to evidence professional learning.

Course booking

The fee for this professional learning course is £275.

Leadership of Learning Course Booking Form 2018/19

For more information about the course, please contact course convener Dr. Nataša Pantić at natasa.pantic@ed.ac.uk 

For more information about course bookings, please contact the Professional Learning Office at professionallearning@ed.ac.uk   

For more information about our Teachers as Agents of Change academic research, please visit the associated Making Sense of Communities of Practice with Social and Epistemic Network Analysis project webpage.

As a mid-career teacher I found the course really helpful as a way of developing my practice. There was a great balance of a theoretical focus on teacher agency combined with an emphasis on how this might be enacted in concrete situations, which really refreshed how I think about my practice. Stepping back from the day-to-day whirl of the classroom and being given a chance to engage with, and reflect on, the academic research into teacher agency for social justice gave me a much clearer sense of how social and institutional barriers might be overcome and outcomes for the least advantaged improved. In other words, it helped guide and renew my sense of moral purpose – the trying to make a difference – that lies at the heart of every teacher's professional identity.

Previous Participant

I feel knowing that I am an agent of change does not only make me realise my responsibilty as a teacher but it has made me value my profession more. Since I took the course, for once I view my career as an opportunity and not just role, if that makes sense. An opportunity to expand my skills beyond pedagogy and get involved in other projects outside teaching which focus on children's wellbeing.

Previous Participant