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General/Moderate Learning Difficulties: Skills & Knowledge30 creditsMaster of EducationOnlineContinuing Professional DevelopmentValidated by Middlesex University

This module will enable you to explore the historical and policy context and concept of General Learning Difficulties (GLD), alongside the theories of, and approaches to, measuring intelligence and how they have shaped the definitions of MLD/GLD.

You will examine the theoretical and research backgrounds of assessment and teaching, investigate the practical issues related to teaching strategies and approaches, and consider some of the complex relationships between MLD/GLD and other SENDs.

Why take this module?

Develop your understanding of the diverse majority of learners with SEND who have no specific diagnosis or named definition of their needs.

Gain far greater insight into the diverse needs of the vast majority of learners with SEND in your classroom.

Enhance your skills and knowledge of the key issues at stake when assessing your students’ primary needs, prioritising intervention support and determining the most effective approaches to differentiation.

Managing the classroom needs of an eclectic group can be challenging; General/Moderate Learning Difficulties: Skills & Knowledge will enable you to respond to the challenge.

Please note

This module is one of two complementary modules: Skills & Knowledge and Application & Reflection. They are worth 30 credits each.

You will need to complete this module first if you plan to take Application & Reflection next. You may also take this module on its own.

The course starts in September, January and May.

Book and enrol before 15 May to join our next cohort.

How will you benefit?

Develop professional expertise

  • Receive Masters-level (M-level) training in teaching learners with general/moderate learning difficulties.
  • Develop academic credibility to support your practice-led classroom knowledge.
  • Gain knowledge in specialist pedagogies for everyday classroom practice.
  • Identify learners with the wide-ranging needs encompassed by GLD/MLD – many of whom have no formal specific diagnosis or professional assessments.
  • Study the policy and research underpinning effective classroom teaching for learners with GLD/MLD.
  • Interact and share perspectives with other experienced professionals.

Add real value to your school

  • Bring expertise in-school and save money.
  • Develop practical skills, tutored by experienced professionals.
  • Access a wealth of practical resources, academic research and interactive materials to support you.
  • Develop your confidence to support the most vulnerable and complex children in your school effectively.

Learn on the job

  • Harness your day-to-day professional experience and work with your tutor to develop your skills.
  • Theories, reflection and activities will help you to explore aspects of your own and others’ practice.

Engage with flexible e-learning

  • Study online and integrate your learning into your working day.
  • Work at a time and pace that suits you.
  • Take part in a flexible module that draws on a broad range of learning tasks and practical experience.
  • Work closely with your peers and dedicated tutors online.
  • Experience mentoring and work placements that really complement your learning.
  • Access our sophisticated online learning platform and utilise the latest technologies: video and multimedia content, case studies and problem-based scenarios, directed reading, structured learning logs, online discussion, online questionnaires, peer evaluation, student forum and webinars (with tutors and guest lecturers).

Accrue credits towards your MEd

  • Attain 30 M-level credits when you successfully complete this module.
  • We offer an unrivalled range of follow-on, practice-led SEND courses that count towards your MEd.
  • Get 180 credits and the MEd is yours.

Connect with your peers

  • Obtain exclusive access to Campus OnlineTM.
  • Interact with your peers using our advanced learning platform and our unique student forum.

We will ensure that you never feel lonely or unsupported in your studies.

Liaise with experienced tutors

  • Enjoy dedicated specialist support from a broad range of experienced tutors.
  • Work with a learning coach, professional tutor and receive dedicated support from the tutor team – made up of experienced SENCOs/SEN consultants/educational psychologists (EPs).

Our SENCOs and EPs know the education sector inside out.

Choose a start date that suits you

Start the module at a time of the year that suits you – September, January or May.

Book and enrol before 15 May to join our next cohort.

The module content

Strand one: What is MLD/GLD?

  • Examine the social and historical context of MLD/GLD.
  • Explore inclusion policy and learning reflection.
  • Encounter learning difficulties from multiple perspectives and investigate various models of disability.
  • Build a real, working model of intelligence alongside key literature that you will comprehensively understand and summarise.
  • Consolidate your learning and write a critical analysis.

Strand two: The assessment and teaching of MLD/GLD: research and theory

  • Identify how IQ can be used as an effective identification and classification tool.
  • Explore the nature of assessment and apply your understanding in practice through an individual in your setting.
  • Encounter important theories of learning and teaching and relate your theories of learning to practice.
  • Write a second critical analysis piece to consolidate your learning.

Strand three: Teaching strategies and approaches for MLD/GLD and associated difficulties

  • Explore Wave 1 and Quality First teaching; use differentiation in your setting; carry out a practical differentiation activity; read about the complexities of differentiation; and reflect on your practice in your setting using a SWOT analysis.
  • Find out about Waves 2 and 3 and speak to your SENCO and colleagues and observe Wave 2 and 3 interventions being carried out in your setting.
  • Read about teaching assistants and pupil grouping and explore them in your setting.
  • Look at specific interventions or approaches to teaching for GLD/MLD.
  • Interface and interact with other SEN.
  • Prepare, plan and write your final critical analysis.

How will you be assessed?

You will need to produce:

  • Critical analysis one: Critically evaluate research and theory relating to the assessment and teaching of children with GLD (2,000 words).
  • Critical analysis two: Write an assignment that analyses and critiques models and theories of intelligence, the measurement of intelligence and how it pertains to the development of the terms MLD/GLD.
  • Critical analysis three: Produce an assignment or equivalent that analyses how MLD/GLD characteristics impact on teaching strategies and approaches and the relationship of these strategies and characteristics to other SENDs.

Where indicated by your tutor, you may submit multimedia resources that you have produced within your applied practice as part of your final portfolio of evidence.

How is the module delivered?

  • You will develop your professional knowledge and understanding through practice – it’s the best way to learn.
  • Campus OnlineTM will support you with content that complements your learning every step of the way.
  • Study with some of the finest practitioners around and engage with outstanding content and practical activities that truly enhance your professional development.

Are you eligible?

Do you have an undergraduate degree?

You will need one to take this module.

Already working in an education setting?

You will get the most out of this module if you work in an education setting with children, young people or adults.

Or do you require access to an education setting?

You will need to get written permission from a senior member of staff to regularly access a setting. We will show you the best way to do this, enabling you to carry out our learning activities in your chosen setting.

Please note

As part of this process, you will also need to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. Visit GOV.UK for more information.

Are you based in an international setting?

This course is available online and can therefore be completed anywhere in the world. Please click here for advice on payment options and other information relevant to those studying outside of the UK.

How much does it cost?

We offer a flexible range of fees to suit your finances:

  • Single payment of £1,200 + VAT.
  • Three monthly instalments of £425 + VAT.
  • Ten monthly instalments of £132 + VAT.

Speak to us (01273 358080) or make a booking.

When does the course start?

Cohorts begin in January, May and September.

Book and enrol before 15 May to join our next cohort.

Please note: as it takes time to process your application and payment, we strongly recommend to register as soon as possible, so that you don’t miss the next intake.

Download a brochure

Our SEND Programme Prospectus will provide you with additional information on M-level practice-led learning modules in SEND.

Download the prospectus.

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Receive a Postgraduate Certificate in General/Moderate Learning Difficulties when you complete two 30-credit modules on General/Moderate Learning Difficulties


Meet the module leader
Dr Jane Yeomans

‘This new module will give you the skills and knowledge to work with individuals who experience difficulties with their learning. It will help you to identify those with General Learning Difficulties (GLD); assess learners; and implement appropriate interventions. It is grounded in the essential theory and will enable you to apply this theory to your practice in your setting.’
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