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Professional Master of Education

What to Expect

The Professional Master of Education (PME) is a two year masters programme that leads to a professional qualification to teach Art and Design at second level. The award is professionally accredited by the Teaching Council of Ireland. The masters programme will enable you as an art or design graduate, to apply your practice in a professional teaching context. On completion of the PME you will have developed an integrated understanding and appreciation of the unique qualities of an art and design education. Specifically, you will have achieved the capacity to perform as an educator in a variety of settings and contexts particularly at second-level. The focus of the PME is on the application of your own art and design practices, insights and modes of learning to the requirements of teaching. The PME aims to facilitate your personal, social, intellectual and practical growth, prepare you for a professional career as a teacher and foster the necessary skills and dispositions of research, analysis, evaluation and critique to enable you to become a reflective practitioner.

The two-year Professional Master of Education (PME) programme has three interconnected pillars: School Placement, Foundation/Professional Studies, and Subject Discipline/Visual Arts Pedagogy. In Year 1 you are given both a theoretical and a practical understanding of key processes of teaching and learning. The School of Education operates on the principle that art teacher education is not centrally concerned with the teaching of art or teaching about art but, rather, is expressly committed to teaching through art. There is a particular emphasis throughout the programme on exploring a range of visual art processes and contemporary art practice through practical workshops in a studio setting. Over the process of the programme student teachers will critically map their work, as educators and artists, on to the current pedagogical shifts in art and design curriculum reform taking place in post primary education. You are introduced to influential traditions of practice in teaching and classroom management. You also undertake teaching practice in a school where you will develop the knowledge, teaching skills and attitudes needed for effective teaching. This is supported by college tutorials and support teaching. In an extended placement in Year 2, the emphasis is on more autonomous learning, and you will be encouraged to take up a visible and active role in the full life of the host school. Key requirements in Year 2 are an Action Research project and an Arts Based Research project, which you will undertake with college support.

Programme Team:

Professor Dervil Jordan and Fiona King

Professor Dervil Jordan is Head of the School of Education in NCAD and a Lecturer in Art and Design Education. She studied Fine Art Painting in NCAD before training as a teacher (PTA). She has an MA in Art Education and holds a Doctorate in Education from St Patrick’s College DCU, Dublin. Her doctoral research examined the Dual Identity of the Artist Teacher. Fiona King is a Lecturer in Art and Design Education and coordinator of the Professional Master of Education programme at NCAD. She studied Fine Art Print in Crawford College of Art and Design before training as a teacher at NCAD. She completed a Masters in Visual Art Education (MAVA) in 2010. Her research interests are two fold: firstly, examining how art and design pedagogical processes are multidisciplinary and transferable to the wider education sector; secondly, how Development Education provides the student art teachers with a critical space to investigate how social justice and environmental themes can be taught through the lens of Art and Design in Post Primary Curriculum. Professor Dervil Jordan (as national coordinator) and Fiona King (as researcher) were part of the Creative Connections European Art and Citizenship project in Ireland, involving 6 European partner countries.

After Your Master’s Degree

Graduates of the programme take up positions as second level art teachers in Ireland and across the world, as third level art educators, as school principals and deputy-principals, as museum curators, youth workers, arts officers, artists in residence in primary and secondary schools, independent art education consultants and as researchers in art education.


The programme is open to graduates with an honours degree award of 2.2 or higher, or an equivalent academic or professional qualification in a related discipline. English language: Students who have not been educated through English must show proof of achieving IELTS 6.5 (with a minimum of 6 in the writing section on the academic version) or an equivalent score in another accepted test.

Professional Master of Education

Duration: 2 Years
120 ECTS credits/Taught masters

Apply now:
Programme Contact

Fiona King:


To find out more about the entry requirements, application process and tuition fees visit –