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University College for Interdisciplinary Learning

Leadership of Learning - with Teaching Placement

Course Unit Code

UCIL20001 (10 Credits)

UCIL21001 (20 Credits)

Course Unit Details

  • Level 2
  • School of Environment, Education and Development

Applications are now open

Limited places are available on this unit, and completion of an application form is required.


Are you considering a career in teaching, or working with children and young people? Do you believe all children and young people have the right to grow and reach their full potential? Do you want to gain experience of being a professional in an educational setting, acting as a member of the teaching staff?

This course unit includes a teaching placement (half day a week over 10 weeks) in a Greater Manchester School. The placement offers you the opportunity to assist in teaching and support and inspire children and young people to engage in learning. At the same time, you will further your own learning through keeping a weekly journal and through developing skills in analysis and reflection. This process aims to help you critically reflect on your understanding of your experiences in one written assignment for 10 credits or two written assignments for 20 credits.

You will share and learn from other students about your differing beliefs and understandings about education, and the complexities of your experiences of working in your placement schools.

You will develop your professional skills through supporting professionals and pupils in schools, and your critical and reflective skills through using a given analytical framework to guide you. You will also deepen your understanding of the English education system.


  • To develop your knowledge and understanding of, and skills in, being a professional within an educational setting
  • To give you transferable skills in professionalism, interpersonal communication and collaboration, problem-solving, leadership and management, analysis, critical thinking, and self-evaluation.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of the unit, you will be able to:

  • Act professionally in terms of attendance, punctuality, reliability and codes of conduct set out by placement schools and the University
  • Maintain positive professional relationships with school staff and pupils
  • Work effectively with school staff to support pupils' learning
  • Apply principles of critical reflective practice to your experiences from your placement
  • Analyse, assess and reflect on your personal learning with respect to placement experiences, guided by a provided analytical framework
  • Draw from a range of literature to enhance critical thinking skills and professionalism
  • Write using academic and ethical protocols

In addition to the Learning Outcomes above, for 20 credits:

  • Analyse and apply concepts and theories of leadership to enhance your reflections on professional experiences of leadership and your future professional learning


10 Credits

  • Developing professional critically reflective skills
  • Placement in a school - 10 half-days spread over 10 weeks. The half-day is selected according to your availability and suitability for a school
  • Being a professional
  • Managing relationships and behaviour
  • Effective learning and teaching
  • Supporting learning in a context of ethnic and socio-cultural diversity
  • Planning for Learning

20 Credits

  • 10 credit syllabus as outlined above
  • 10 credits reflecting on approaches to leadership
  • Concepts and theories of leadership
  • Developing critical thinking


Draft assignment:

One draft of each of the assignments outlined below may be submitted to get feedback in order to make improvements before final submission.

10 Credits

1. 2000-word written assignment on reflective practice (100%)

2. Submission of weekly reflective journal entries (Pass/Fail)

20 Credits

1. 2000-word written assignment on reflective practice (50%)

2. Submission of weekly reflective journal entries (Pass/Fail)

3. 2000-word written assignment on leadership (50%)


Applications are now being accepted for this unit.

Application Process

1. Applicants must apply for a place on this unit. The application link can be found at the end of this section.

2. . Places will be filled as applications are received, so apply early to increase your chance of securing a place. For Semester 1 and Semester 2, interviews will take place in late summer. For Semester 2 only, interviews will take place over the autumn.

3. If your application is shortlisted, you will be invited to a short interview. The interview will explore your reasons for wanting to take the unit and your suitability for it.

4. If your application is successful, the University will initiate a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for you. You are responsible for completing this check. A DBS check can take up to 12 weeks to come through, and potentially longer for overseas students. We have to confirm with a school that the DBS check has been done and is clear before the school will give permission for you to do a placement with them.

5. Attendance at 'Leadership of Learning - with Teaching Placement' seminars is mandatory. You should not enrol onto the course unit unless you are able to attend all of the seminars and at least 90% of placement visits.

6. You may opt for a primary or secondary placement depending on the availability of places in schools.

a) For a primary school placement, you will support teaching and pupils' learning in a year group between the ages of 3-11.

b) For a secondary school placement, you will support teaching and pupils' learning of a curriculum subject that is closest to your degree discipline. If there is not a suitable match, your A level subjects may be considered depending on your A Level subjects and grades. For example, high A Level grades in Science subjects, Maths, English or History may be considered if you are studying Engineering, Law, Psychology or PPE.

c) If there is no match for a secondary school subject, it is likely you will be offered a primary school placement.

d) You may be able to arrange your own placement in Greater Manchester in consultation with the unit director and a proposed school.

* Application Form for Leadership of Learning

General UCIL eligibility

UCIL units are designed to be accessible to undergraduate students from all disciplines.

UCIL units are credit-bearing and it is not possible to audit UCIL units or take them for additional/extra credits. You must enrol following the standard procedure for your School when adding units outside of your home School.

If you are not sure if you are able to enrol on UCIL units you should contact your School Undergraduate Office. You may wish to contact your programme director if your programme does not currently allow you to take a UCIL unit.

You can also contact the UCIL team if you have any questions.

Teaching Staff

Sue Goldrick, Colin Mills, Pauline Prevett, an 'Access Manchester: Your Pathway to University' representative, and guest teachers from local schools.

Teaching and Learning Methods

10 Credits

  • 10 half-days over 10 weeks on placement in a school + travel time
  • 10 hours recording evidence and reflections in reflective journal
  • 12 hours (6 x 2 hour) in-person seminars
  • 30 minute tutorial
  • 1 x draft assignment feedback
  • 25 hours reading
  • 22 hours assignment preparation

20 Credits

In addition to the hours outlined above for 10 credits, the 20 credit unit comprises:

  • 10 hours recording evidence and reflections in reflective journal
  • 12 hours (6 x 2 hour) in-person seminars
  • 30 minute tutorial
  • 1 x draft assignment feedback
  • 50 hours reading
  • 33 hours assignment preparation
I enjoyed my placement so much and built such an effective relationship with the school that I have extended it and I'm still there! This course has built my confidence and I have gained some excellent leadership skills.Marcell Mapp, Disaster Management & Humanitarian Response

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