Nottingham Institute of Education

Nottingham Trent University

Special Educational Needs Coordination

This statutory national award, in partnership with Nottinghamshire County Council, will develop your professional attributes, and improve your knowledge, skills and understanding to enable you to carry out your SENCO role effectively and with confidence.

This one year, National Award is available to SENCOs and other interested teachers from any school or education setting in the UK. It is delivered though a partnership between Nottingham Trent University and Nottinghamshire County Council. Prior to the establishment of the National Award, we had an established track record of jointly delivering a highly regarded induction course for SENCOs.

Why study this course?

  • Achievement of this National Award is a legal requirement for all new SENCOs
  • With only five compulsory days attendance, and distance support it is ideal to fit in with a busy lifestyle
  • Benefit from an experienced course leader with a reputation in special education and inclusion
  • Access all the University's resources and online workspace

Entry requirements

You must be one of the following:

  • a current SEN Coordinator
  • intending to take up a SEN Coordinator role in the future and have access to the practice-based elements required for the course.

You must have obtained Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), or Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status, prior to applying.

Course modules

Study sessions involve:

  • five compulsory days attendance the University
  • five days for independent set tasks
  • personal or virtual tutorial and tutor support sessions as required by you.

Independent set tasks

The set tasks all involve school-based activities and include:

  • One day (equivalent) of meetings with your head teacher to focus on the professional role of the SENCO and review how to meet your learning outcomes. It is recommended this is around two hours a term.
  • Half day visit to an alternative phase mainstream setting, focussing on the professional role of the SENCO, low / high incidence of SEN and disabilities, participation and learning, and working in partnership with other professionals.
  • Half day visit to either a community special school or a special school focussing on a particular needs, for example autism. The focus is on high incidence of SEN and disabilities, participation and learning, and working in partnership with other professionals.
  • Half day attendance at a multi-professional / multi-agency meeting, with a focus on working with other professionals.
  • Two days in school to undertake tasks linked to the written assignments, with a focus on conducting an inquiry, audit and evaluation of provision and working with pupils, parents and colleagues.
  • Half day optional attendance at a tutorial on Meeting the Learning Outcomes at NTU. If you decide not to attend this, you may use the time for further course related work in school.

Masters level study

The Masters component requires completion of tasks that include:

  • A critical review of legislation, policy and literature as it relates to the SENCO role, with a critical review of SEN policy in action within your school
  • A small-scale research study about improving pupil achievement.
  • A critical analysis of school practice of consulting, engaging and communicating with pupils and parents.


Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Course duration
Professional Award Part-time September 2019 £ 1,900 per (Home) 1 Years

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