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The University of Southampton

EDUC3037 Supporting Additional Learning Needs: Critical Observations

Module Overview

This module will incorporate critical observation and analysis of educational and training provision for learners with additional needs. You will develop your knowledge and understanding of the underpinning values and theories of educational practices in different educational settings across different mainstream education settings as well as specialist contexts. Your time in school might normally include lesson observations, discussions with teachers, meetings with staff, working with individuals or small groups of pupils/students in classrooms alongside teachers/tutors, or examination of school policy documents. An enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) with Child Barred List check is required for this module and must be in place before the start of the second week. PLEASE NOTE: DBS can take up to ten weeks to obtain; failure to meet this requirement will result in you having to choose an alternative module. It is your responsibility to obtain the DBS clearance at your own cost. Please contact the Education Student Office at: regarding application.

Aims and Objectives

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • knowledge and understanding of the values and theories of educational practices for learners with additional support needs
  • Provide an opportunity for you to engage in the critical observation of theory and practice in an educational or training context where learners with additional needs are supported
  • Enable you to devise a strategy that could facilitate opportunities to experience and observe an educational or training context where learners with additional needs are effectively supported
  • Knowledge and understanding of the underlying values, principles and practices relevant to supporting learners with additional needs
  • Knowledge and understanding of the societal and organisational structures and purposes of education and training for learners with additional needs, and the possible implications for learners and the learning process
  • The ability to systematically analyse educational concepts, theories and issues of policy in a range of contexts relevant to learners with additional needs
  • The ability to select and apply a range of relevant theoretical and research-based evidence (primary and secondary sources) to extend your knowledge and understanding
  • The ability to develop, organise and articulate opinions and a coherent line of argument in both speech and writing while adopting relevant and appropriate specialist vocabulary


The module incorporates the critical observation and analysis of aspects of provision and practice in a range of contexts relevant to learners with additional needs taking particular account of the theory and application of evidence-led practice for effective teaching and learning. Topics normally covered in this module will include: - Role of governments; - UK Legislation and policies e.g.The Equality Act; The Children and Families Act; - Inclusion; - Mainstream vs. specialist contexts; - Supported employment; - Lifelong learning; - Educational Outcomes; - What is education preparing learners for following formal education settings? - What outcomes should educators be focusing on for learners with additional needs? - Who decides what a 'good outcome' means? - Parental involvement; - Alternative options [e.g. home-schooling; paying for additional (private) tuition].

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

This module is taught through a mix of interactive teaching sessions, directed reading and suggested additional research. Typically, there will be an interactive lecture and seminar each week with the exception of the weeks during your visits to an educational or training context. You will be expected to carry out critical observations, normally in single setting selected from Early Years, Primary, Secondary, Tertiary or Higher Education (a minimum of 8 hours). Opportunities for tutorial support will be available.

Completion of assessment task36
Preparation for scheduled sessions16
Placement Hours8
Wider reading or practice50
Follow-up work16
Total study time150

Resources & Reading list

(2007). Report on the Implementation of the Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2004. Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Education (HMIe). .

Odom, S. L., Brantlinger, E., Gersten, R., Horner, R. H., Thompson, B., & Harris, K. R. (2005). Research in special education: Scientific methods and evidence-based practices. Exceptional Children. ,71 , pp. 137-148.

(2010). Review of the Additional Support for Learning Act: "Adding Benefits for Learners". Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Education (HMIe). .

Mistry, M, & Barnes, D (2013). The Use of Makaton for Supporting Talk, through Play, for Pupils Who have English as an Additional Language (EAL) in the Foundation Stage. Education 3-13. ,41 , pp. 603-616.

Special educational needs and disability code of practice: 0 to 25 years.

Special educational needs : an analysis and summary of data sources.

Parsons, S. (2015). 'Why are we an ignored group?': Mainstream educational experiences and current life satisfaction of adults on the autism spectrum from an online survey.. International Journal of Inclusive Education. ,19 , pp. 397-421.





MethodPercentage contribution
Coursework  (3500 words) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Individual essay  (3500 words) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External


Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Books and Stationery equipment

Recommended texts for this module may be available in limited supply in the University Library and students may wish to purchase reading texts as appropriate.


You will be responsible for any travel costs. You need a Disclosure and Baring Service (DBS) check. You will be responsible for the associated costs of a DBS. For up to date information about DBS costs see: Please contact the Education Student Office ( as soon as possible regarding application and further details.

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

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