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Module Specifications..

Current Academic Year 2023 - 2024

Please note that this information is subject to change.

Module Title Sociology of Education
Module Code ED4300
School 78
Module Co-ordinatorSemester 1: Elaine McDonald
Semester 2: Elaine McDonald
Autumn: Elaine McDonald
Module TeachersElaine McDonald
NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 5
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None
Coursework Only

This module introduces students to the major themes in sociology of education and the socio-cultural issues that have an impact on the school/classroom community. The module focuses on global trends in education and looks at areas such as sustainability, global citizenship and the understanding of teaching as a profession in light of the evolving educational environment. In addition, the module has a strong focus on inclusion and looks at issues such as the relationship between school and society; educational disadvantage; gender in education; working with parents; inclusion and interculturalism in education. The module is framed within the context of challenge based learning whereby students work collaboratively to critically reflect on and respond to a number of case based scenarios on the themes outlined above.

Learning Outcomes

1. Display an understanding of the relationship between school and society.
2. Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of key socio-cultural issues and their impact on the second level school community.
3. Give evidence of critical engagement with the relevant documents/policies that seek to respond to sustainability; global citizenship; wellbeing and resilience; working with parents; education disadvantage, gender in education and intercultural education.
4. Engage in critical reflection on the role of the teacher in creating an inclusive teaching/learning community in the light of the themes/issues raised in the module.
5. Describe and be able to analyse a number of key contemporary socio-cultural issues (for example: parents in education, global trends in education, teacher professionalism) and be able consider their impact on the second level school community.
6. Work collaboratively and creatively to apply a challenge based learning approach to respond to the issues raised in the module.

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture24Module lectures
Independent Study90Students must complete required reading prior to participating in lectures.
Group work11Working in groups students participate in "hackathon" assessment task.
Total Workload: 125

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Global trends
Students will look at the following areas and consider their impact on the post primary classroom: global citizenship, sustainability, social responsibility; well being and resilience.

Education Disadvantage
Students will focus on DEIS strategies; evaluation of DEIS; homelessness; pupils in direct provision and emergency accommodation; early school leaving.

Students will explore issues and themes related to inter-cultural education including the issues faced by pupils from ethnic minorities. In addition, students will examine the issues faced by students with additional learning needs.

Students will explore issues related to gender in education including stereotyping and subject choice; accessing the curriculum; gender identity and gender equality.

Working with parents
Students will focus on working with parents and the wider community as a means of enhancing and progressing the wholistic development of pupils.

Challenge based learning
Students will investigate and critically appraise the usefulness of challenge based learning to solve "real world" issues in schools.

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment100% Examination Weight0%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
Digital ProjectThere are two aspects to the assessment element of this module: 1. Working collaboratively in specifically assigned groups students will participate in a "hackathon" whereby they design a solution based response to the issues raised in the course of the module. 2. Students are required to write an individual reflection on their experience of the module, the insights gained and the experience of working as part of a group.100%n/a
Reassessment Requirement Type
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
This module is category 1
Indicative Reading List

  • Geraldine Scanlon, Grainne McKenna, Children's Rights Alliance: 2018, Homeworks: A Study on the Educational Needs of Children Experiencing Homelessness and Living in Emergency Accommodation,
Other Resources

0, Website, Perkins, D., 2014, Futurewise Educating our Children for a Changing World,, Jossey-Bass, . https://www.bgsu.edu/content/dam/BGSU/education/teacher-education/images/Futurewise-D.-Perkins.pdf, 0, Website, TEU DCU, 0, hallenge Based Learning (CBL), https://www.dcu.ie/teu/challenge-based-learning,
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