The Aberdeen MEd, Past, Present, Future

John Nisbet, Education in the North, Helen Martin (Editor)

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John Nisbet wrote a number or articles on the ‘Aberdeen MEd’ and two, the first from Volume 6, 1969 and the second from New Series Number 5, 1997 caught my eye. In the first article John gives a history of the MEd from its first award in 1921 to two students and its name the Ed.B. to 1969 when 98 students (with 40% of applicants refused entry and University caps on numbers) enrolled. The MEd was in two parts a diploma and a degree stage. The curriculum is noted as covering a large amount of psychology, statistics and even biology! Graduates by in large moved on to jobs as lecturers, university and college of education researchers, and psychologists. This is very much the early days for educational research as an important are for the classroom teacher and a vastly different MEd to that of today. In the second MEd article in 1997 John says farewell to the qualification at the University of Aberdeen. The challenging course run in evenings and weekends, with ‘finals’ sat and a dissertation to be completed, awarded to over 600 graduates many of whom had become the great and the good of Scottish Education, was discontinued by the institution for financial reasons. This article is a fascinating history of the creation of the University Department of Education in 1890 and it continuous struggle for survival. As usual John was political but not overtly controversial commenting on the possible decline in interest in an ‘academic, research-based’ degree and a move towards, ‘practically-oriented’ courses, and the then forthcoming merger with Northern College. I had no idea of the hard work that went into keeping such a valuable qualification alive for so long.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-10
Number of pages5
JournalEducation in the North
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2016


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