Special Educational Needs - Professional Studies

ATU - Sligo St. Angela's

Special Educational Needs - Professional Studies

Programme Description
The programme provides a postgraduate qualification for all professionals interested in the area of SEN.

Programme Outcomes and Progression
The modules provide a progression pathway to a Master of Arts in Professional Studies in SEN. Research methods are critical to successful study at MA level and will incorporate problem – solving activities, action research in professional contexts and the opportunity to link theory and practice in general and in terms of the execution of coursework. Participants accepted onto the MA stage of the programme will have achieved an increased level of competence and confidence within their chosen pathway.

The Advanced Research and Dissertation Modules will provide students with the opportunity to make and implement informed choices regarding professionally relevant areas of research for their dissertation and to do this with the guidance and support of tutors and peers.

The final dissertation will be a maximum of 20,000 words and the topic chosen by the participant must be related to the specific pathway chosen by the participant.

Subjects taught

Programme Content and Structure

A modular blended learning programme (which includes e-tivities, discussion boards and some face-to-face workshops).

Postgraduate Certificate students must complete two modules from those listed below. Postgraduate Diploma students must complete four from those listed below.

• Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
• Challenging Behaviour
• Educational Research Methods*
• General Learning Disabilities
• Inclusion for learning
• Literacy • Numeracy
• Specific Learning Difficulties I (Communication, Speech and Language Difficulties and Dyslexia)
• Specific Learning Difficulties II (Dyscalculia, Attention Deficit/Hypractivity Disorder and Dyspraxia/Developmental Coordination Disorder)

* For those participants wishing to progress to Masters stage, the completion of the Educational Research Methods module is compulsory together with two modules from the list above.

Entry requirements

Level 8 Undergraduate Degree or equivalent. For students without the relevant academic qualification but with relevant previous experience, recognition for prior learning can be awarded.


Two-three years depending on choice of exit award.

Post Course Info

Further Education
Participants may progress to Masters level on successful completion of three modules which must include the online blended learning module: Educational Research Methods. The exit award will be a Master of Arts (Professional Studies in Special Educational Needs).

Career Opportunities
The modules attract a wide range of participants from a variety of settings, including:

Classroom teachers
Graduates who wish to do a Postgraduate Diploma in Education and are awaiting a place on the programme
Qualified teachers who are seeking full-time employment
Employees within the Health Service Executive who work with learners with Special Educational Needs
Principals, managers and Department Inspectorate
Employees and Managers within Early Childhood Education sector
Classroom assistants (including cuntóirí teanga)
Educational Psychologists
Learning Support Tutors
Speech and Language Therapists
Occupational Therapists
Parents and Family Members involved in the care of learners with special educational needs
Any others involved in the training or educational needs of learners with special educational needs

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Diploma (Level 9 NFQ),Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ),Minor Certificate (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Part time,Blended

  • Apply to

    Course provider