Master of Arts in Community Action and Development

Master of Arts in Community Action and Development

Course information

Course title Master of Arts in Community Action and Development
Course code PMACDVPET7
Postnominal M.A.(Melit.)
Level of qualification Second Cycle
National Qualifications Framework level Level 7
Duration 6 Semesters
Mode of attendance Part-time Evening
Total ECTS credits 90
Coordinator Andrew Azzopardi
Delivered by Faculty for Social Wellbeing
Community Development is an interdisciplinary academic paradigm with a long tradition. The MA in Community Action and Development delves into the intellectualizing of issues such as community education, empowerment and emancipation, citizenship, inclusion and exclusion, social movements, social capital, globalization, sustainable development and education for sustainable development. The programme of study also targets problematisation and deconstruction of prejudiced and stereotypical cultural notions and attitudes and social problems. It advocates a rethinking of citizenship: By drawing on emancipatory schools of thought, the programme of study challenges assumptions that citizenship 'just happens'. It also fosters critical engagement with social change and its academic study.

Methodologically, the programme of study engages with ‘concerns within the community’ by means of formal, informal and non-formal pedagogies. Moreover, on the basis of consultation meetings with relevant stakeholders, the programme of study is hybridized into the varied interests of potential students. Thus, the richness and calibre of this Masters degree lies in its ability to bring together diverse scholarly and professional practice components into one organic whole to develop community practice that caters for the local, glocal, European and and globalised social contexts.

This programme of study addresses the increasing need and demand of contemporary communities (in Malta and overseas) to be resourced in a decentralised manner (including virtual/online tools and spaces), with human resources who have the required human capital and level of professional practice, and who are specifically based in respective communities on a long-term basis.


The programme of study is designed around five distinct yet interrelated knowledge dimensions:

1. Community studies, sociology, politics and governance;
2. Community pedagogy and educational intervention;
3. Community activism and participation;
4. Community psychology;
5. Professional practice.

The programme of study targets the understanding of these knowledge dimensions and related critical intellectual development within a framework of globalization that is balanced by sustainable development.
The Course shall be open to applicants in possession of a Bachelor degree from this University or from any other higher education institution recognized by Senate, in an area of study deemed relevant by the Board with at least Second Class Honours or Category II, together with a minimum of 2 years’ experience working in a community setting.

All applicants shall be required to demonstrate that they have the necessary aptitude and disposition to follow the Course with profit. Professional aptitude and disposition shall be measured by means of a personal interview conducted by an interviewing board appointed for the purpose.

The interviewing board appointed by the Board shall be composed of at least three members.

The maximum number of students that can be admitted into the course is 25 students.

When the number is so limited and the number of eligible applicants exceeds the number of places available, applicants shall be selected using the following criteria, the weighting of which shall be published at the time of the call for applications:

(a) degree type and class
(b) experience working in a community setting and
(c) performance during the interview.

Applicants shall apply by the deadline announced by the University of Malta. For the purpose of selection, applicants whose qualifications as stipulated above were obtained by 31st August preceding the commencement of the Course shall be considered first.

The admission requirements are applicable for courses commencing in October 2018.

For more detailed information pertaining to admission and progression requirements please refer to the bye-laws for the course available here.

UM currently hosts over 1,000 full-time international students and over 450 visiting students. The ever-increasing international students coming from various countries, in recent years, have transformed this 400-year old institution into an international campus.

Our international students generally describe Malta as a safe place, enjoying excellent weather and an all-year varied cultural programme. Malta is considered as the ideal place for students to study.

The International Office at UM provides information about admission, English language requirements, and comparability of qualifications. Dedicated personnel assist international students with visas, health tests, accommodation and other related issues.

Local/EU/EEA Applicants: Total Tuition Fees: Eur 4,800
Fee per semester: Eur 800

Non-EU/Non-EEA Applicants: Total Tuition Fees: Eur 10,800
Yr 1: Eur 5,400 - Yr 2: Eur 5,400 - Yr 3: NIL
Learning outcomes of the programme include:

(a) Development of professional practice rooted in an academic and rigorous research culture of social engagement that seeks sustainable community development and regeneration;
(b) Ability to develop, implement, co-ordinate and support policy that is grounded in the scientific knowledge based (described in (a));
(c) Experiential learning, particularly during the placement / practical component of the programme of study;
(d) Engagement with education as a concept and a lifelong practice that goes beyond schools and schooling, i.e. extending to informal and non-formal dimensions;
(e) Generation of primary data, identification and effective deployment of secondary data to address poorly understood / vulnerable community and relational dynamics;


For this to occur, the targeted key/transferable skills and skills relevant to personal development and employability include:

(a) Critical engagement with established paradigms, policies, literature and data;
(b) Interpersonal and networking skills;
(c) Leadership, team and team-building skills;
(d) Training-the-trainer skills that are grounded in emancipation of self and context;
(e) Advanced professional practice rooted in ethics of practice;
(f) Relevant corporate and organizational skills;
(g) Relevant ICT skills (with special focus on online media campaigns/dissemination and online analytics);
(h) Community profiling;
(i) Advanced research skills;
(j) Project and resource management (with special attention to local regeneration and gentrification projects).
The MA in Community Action and Development is intended for those working or planning to work in EU, state and civil society organizations.
Potential career and employment prospectives include community workers/developers, health workers, educators, cultural operators and mediators, opinion makers, researchers, policy-makers, officers working on local regeneration and gentrification projects and other executive and high administrative posts within:

- The European Union (EU) and EU agencies,
- State entities such as ministries, regional and local councils and other state entities, such as the National Commission for the Promotion of Equality, the European Union Programmes Agency (EUPA), the Malta European Union Steering Action Committee (MEUSAC), SAPPORT, APPOĠĠ.
- Civil society entities that include NGO remunerated staff and volunteers, social partners (trade unions, employers' associations), social cooperatives, fair trade proponents, members and agents of political parties;
- The private sector, e.g. corporate social responsibility, technology with social purpose.
Click here to access the Programme of Study applicable from 2018/9.

Last Updated: 1 September 2018

The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
Unless for exceptional approved reasons, no changes to the programme of study for a particular academic year will be made once the students' registration period for that academic year begins.

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