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St Mary’s EdD offers a cohesive and coherent doctoral study experience as part of a community of student peers and of research practitioners. 

  • A combination of online and face to face teaching
  • The Naylor Library in Teddington holds a wide range of resources for teaching and education

Why study Professional Doctorate in Education?

Students are part of a vibrant research culture where the focus is on the process of development as a researcher in relation to personal and professional concerns and practices.

The curriculum and learning and teaching methods foster reflection on personal, professional and academic values and on the links between them. This knowledge is then related to evolving professional identities and roles as researchers.

Modes of learning and teaching forge meaningful links to policy, political and practitioner contexts. Readings, video and audio images, graphics, and online forums are some of the various stimuli provided to provoke thought and critical debate in weekend sessions and in personal student engagement.

Why St Mary's?

The programme benefits from its location in St Mary’s Institute of Education, which has plentiful and robust partnerships with schools and other professional educational settings and contexts. The Institute is credited as an outstanding provider of teacher education.

Students are well supported through our individualised mentoring system and our consultative approach with students. In the first year, each student in each cohort is assigned a Personal Academic Tutor (PAT) who will be their first point of contact throughout the first part of the programme. A Student Staff Consultative Committee meets regularly to share and address concerns or queries and cohorts develop their own peer-support networks through regular contact and sharing of ideas and resources.

Once students enter Part 2 of the EdD programme, they are assigned a supervisory team who provide tutorial sessions, professional guidance and research mentoring. Further support for research development is provided at this stage so that students are able to develop and refine their research, writing and presentation skills.

The EdD is also offered at our Edinburgh Campus at the Gillis Centre. Supervision an teaching on the EdD through St Mary’s Edinburgh Campus will principally be online. Select in-person supervision may be arranged in Edinburgh as well as opportunities to visit the Twickenham campus.

For more information please submit an enquiry to the course lead.

Course lead

Dr Christine Edwards-Leis headshotDr Christine Edwards-Leis
Associate Professor - Education

Entry requirements

You will need to submit:

  • A 1000-word outline of your professional context and possible areas of research that offer potential for you to demonstrate how the research could transform your practice;
  • A CV which demonstrates that you have at least three years’ significant and relevant experience in a professional area appropriate to the programme of study;
  • A Master’s degree which matches the descriptor for a Level 7 qualification in the UK Framework of Higher Education Qualifications; OR An equivalent academic qualification; OR Evidence of equivalent experience and learning acquired in a professional context;
  • Evidence of proficiency in spoken and written English at IELTS 6.5 in accordance with St Mary’s standards for English language requirements; and,
  • Two professional referees.

Once your application has been reviewed, we will invite you to an interview which may be conducted either face-to-face or via an online platform (Zoom, TEAMS)

International requirements

International students should check our country-specific pages for equivalents. If English is not your first language you will need to achieve an IELTS score of (or equivalent).

We now accept IELTS Indicator test results as proof of your English language level.

Further information

For more information about entry requirements please email

Course content


  •  Year one, core
  •  Year one, core
  •  Year one, core
  •  Year two, core
  •  Year two, core
  •  Year two, core
  •  Year two, core
  •  Core

Please note: it is possible that a module listed on the website will not be able to run due to reasons beyond our control. For more information please refer to our course information disclaimer.

Career opportunities

The Careers Service has more information on careers and work placements options available to students who have started their studies at St Mary’s.

The team can also provide support in finding part-time working during your studies.

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How the degree is taught

Teaching methods

You'll be taught on our beautiful and historic campus located in Twickenham, London.

Teaching weekends in 2021/22 academic year

Sessions will be a combination of face-to-face and online.

October 2021

  • Friday 8th: 4-7pm
  • Saturday 9th: 8.30am-5.30pm

December 2021

  • Friday 4th: 4-7pm
  • Saturday 5th: 8.30am-5.30pm

February 2022

  • Friday 4th: 4-7pm
  • Saturday 5th: 8.30am-5.30pm

March 2022

  • Friday 18th: 4-7pm
  • Saturday 19th: 8.30am-5.30pm

May 2022

  • Friday 20th: 4-7pm
  • Saturday 21st: 8.30am-5.30pm

Assessment methods

The assessment strategy is intended to build student skills in rigorous and original research; it is also designed to foster a critical integration of academic and professional knowledge and values. Thus, critical reflection on the student’s own practice is a sustained element of the assessment strategy, alongside assignments designed to enhance skills and knowledge in selected fields of study and in the theory and practice of research. Assessment will derive from reflection and discussion about key matters relating to research and professional interests.

Outcomes in Part 1

By the end of their studies students should be able to:

  1. Analyse and critically evaluate demanding texts and ideas in the field of educational research, both orally and in writing, and relate this to specific professional contexts;
  2. Evaluate, from an informed knowledge base, practitioner approaches to educational research;
  3. Construct and communicate effectively sophisticated arguments relating to educational research and practice, with appropriate theoretical and evidential underpinning;
  4. Demonstrate the ability to conduct research which connects knowledge, ideas and concerns arising in academic and professional domains;
  5. Critically assess and apply a variety of philosophical methodologies; and,
  6. Conceptualise and design a significant and original research project in an area related to your professional practice.

Outcomes in Part 2:

  1. Successfully complete a piece of rigorous and original research in an area related to your professional practice and which demonstrates transformation of your practice;
  2. Appropriately analyse and discuss their data, demonstrating originality and creativity in its interpretation;
  3. Reach appropriate conclusions and findings, demonstrating a detailed knowledge and systematic understanding of the research process and any limitations of your research project; and,
  4. Effectively communicate the ethical considerations within your research.


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Fees and funding

Tuition fees

September 2023

  • Home: £3,120
  • International: £7,250

Please note: all tuition fees shown are for the academic year 2023/24 only. Due to the nature of Research Degrees tuition fees are subject to change in future years.


Some research degree students may be eligible for a government loan of up to £25,000 to help cover tuition fees and living costs.

Additional costs

Your tuition fees will cover the cost of all mandatory elements of your programme.

Additional costs could be incurred depending on optional modules chosen and other projects undertaken.

For further information about additional costs please see our additional costs webpage

Further information