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MA/PGDip Education of Learners with Multisensory Impairment (Deafblindness)

This distance learning Education of Learners with Multisensory Impairment (Deafblindness) programme from University of Birmingham provides opportunities for professional development for those who want to make a difference to the lives of children and young people with multi-Sensory Impairment (Deafblindness).

Quick Facts

Part-time Duration: 3 years (MA)
2 years (PGDip)
Starting in: September
Tuition Fee: £7,050 per year
Location: Online

Approved by the Department of Education and designed to fit around busy working lives, the PGDip / MA Mandatory Qualification for Teachers of Children and Young People with Multi-Sensory Impairment (Deafblindness) are blended learning programmes that enable qualified teachers (QTS or QTLS) to gain specialist skills and knowledge that make a difference to children and the adults who support them in the classroom. You will be able to work through online learning materials at your own pace and will be supported by both online tutorials and live lectures. There will also be two face to face study weekends that you must attend if you wish to gain the mandatory qualification.

Please note: an alternative course (MA Education of Learners with Multi-Sensory Impairment/Deafblindness) is also open to teachers (as well as other professionals with appropriate qualifications) working with children and young people with multi-sensory impairments who do not wish, or are not eligible, to obtain QTMSI (qualified teacher of the deaf) status.

Courses included:

  • Assessment of vision and hearing: strategies to support MSI (Deafblind) learners
  • Policy and SEND professional identity
  • Deafblindness – A Unique Disability
  • Early Communication and Relationships
  • Developing communication, confidence and wellbeing for MSI (Deafblind) learners
  • Effective Teaching of Learners with Sensory Impairment (For the Mandatory qualification only)

“The transition from undergrad to postgrad can be a big step up in terms of workload and what is expected of you, but there is so much support available to you as a postgrad student, from academic writing support (if you’ve been out of education for a few years or just want a bit of extra help) to mental health and wellbeing services. The careers support is fantastic – the uni puts on employer fairs throughout the year and you have access to one on one support from the Careers Network team, who can help you develop your skills ready for your next step!”

Emma Sutton // PhD Psychology


Many of those who have completed the course continue to work with people with deafblindness (MSI) and some continue or progress to influential roles in specialist MSI units, or as advisory teachers for pupils who are deafblind. Others take key roles in such fields as managing further education for MSI learners or sensory impairment in an LEA or other setting, or go on to promoted posts in school or other management.


Applicants are normally required to have a first degree or diplomas or five years of relevant professional experience, training or other relevant qualifications.

In addition to the general entry requirements, applicants should have:

  • Department for Education (DfE) Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) or Qualified Teaching and Learning Skills (QTLS) status or equivalent;
  • normally, a minimum of one years’ teaching experience;
  • mentor support from a qualified teacher of children with multi-sensory impairment (Deafblidnness); either paid employment, or a formalised volunteer role with a view to employment as a teacher of children with multi-sensory impairment (Deaflbindness), in a capacity that involves regular and ongoing teaching of children and young people with multi-sensory impairment throughout the duration of the programme.

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