Master of Arts in Disability Studies

Master of Arts in Disability Studies

Course information

Course title Master of Arts in Disability Studies
Course code PMADBSPET2
Postnominal M.A.
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 Maria Victoria Gauci
Delivered by Faculty for Social Wellbeing
The Master of Arts in Disability Studies aims to:

• Induct students in the current issues pertaining to disability;
• Appraise the complexity of the phenomenon of disability;
• Examine the barriers faced by disabled people and consider alternative solutions in their work and life;
• Explore the wide scope of areas covered in disability studies and research.

The taught component of the course is divided into two: core content that is delivered in the first year and a choice of two streams in the second year: the socio-cultural steam and the applied stream. The socio-cultural stream examines the concept of disability from different standpoints, namely the theoretical, the policy and legislative, the personal, and the socio-political perspective. The applied stream allows students to engage with the barriers disabled people encounter due to specific impairments and their implications to professional practice. In addition, the guided literature review (DBS5013), in the second year, offers students the opportunity to choose an area that interests them, and develop it independently with support and guidance from a supervisor. Students will also acquire the necessary knowledge and skills to conduct emancipatory disability research and to help them write their dissertation.

The programme of studies extends over a period of three years of part-time studies. The first two years will be dedicated to the taught component of the course and the third year to the writing of a dissertation. Lectures are normally held twice a week in the evening and are of three hours duration. Each semester, the Department supplements the taught component with foreign guest lecturers.

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The Course shall be open to applicants in possession of the following qualifications:

(a) any first cycle degree classified with at least Category II or Second Class Honours or

(b) a Diploma in Health Science from this University in any of the following areas of study: Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy, Nursing, Podiatry, or in any other area deemed relevant by the Board, together with a minimum of five years of relevant work experience or

(c) a professional qualification deemed by Senate to be comparable to the qualification indicated in paragraph (b), together with a minimum of five years of relevant work experience,

provided that applicants admitted under paragraphs (b) and (c) shall have successfully sat for an interview, during which they shall be required to provide written and employer-corroborated evidence of clinical practice and other relevant qualifications obtained following completion of the diploma course and provided that they shall have successfully completed the preparatory programme as specified below.

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 a board appointed for the purpose.

The maximum number of students that can be admitted into the course is 20 students.

When the number is so limited and the number of eligible applicants exceeds the number of places available, applicants shall be selected according to the following criteria, which shall be weighted as follows:

(a) qualification type and classification – 45%
(b) experience in the area of the proposed study – 15% and
(c) professional aptitude and disposition – 40%.

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

Recognition for Prior Learning (RPL): Applicants may also be considered through the RPL process. Further information about RPL can be obtained here. Applicants whose RPL portfolio is recognised by the Department shall be required to complete the Preparatory Programme indicated below.

Preparatory Programme

Applicants admitted under paragraphs (b) and (c) shall be required to complete a preparatory programme, comprising 35 credits as directed by the Board, prior to their registration as regular students on the Course. Only those applicants who obtain an average of 65% or better in the preparatory programme shall be considered for admission to the Course under paragraphs (b) and (c).

The admission requirements are applicable for courses commencing in October 2020.

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.

You can compare your national qualifications to the local requirements by visiting our qualifications comparability webpage.

Access more information about our admission process and English language requirements.

After you receive an offer from us, our International Office will assist you with visas, 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
Students who successfully complete the Master of Arts in Disability Studies should:

• Demonstrate that they are conversant with contemporary debates and issues in the field of disability;
• Critically examine the underlying principles of definitions and theories of disability;
• Show that they are able to assess the impact of public and social policy and law on disabled people’s quality of life and the choices and opportunities open to them;
• Be able to explain and examine the barriers faced by disabled people and consider alternative solutions in their work and life;
• Critically examine the complex factors involved in the relations between impairment and disability and the individual and society;
• Appraise and assess the importance of taking a holistic perspective when interacting with disabled people and in the use of language;
• Explain and critically appraise the development of disability as a socio-political issue in relation to the struggle of other social groups;
• Analyse data and information related to disability and be able to interpret this information;
• Demonstrate that they are able to carry out emancipatory research and that they can critically appraise research studies in the area of disability.
The course is intended for any graduate who wishes to gain specialised knowledge and skills on disability. Disabled students will be provided with support.
• This course will offer opportunities for employment as a social and/or community operator in voluntary, non-governmental and governmental settings engaged in the social and/or welfare field;
• The ability to explain disability to others is a useful skill in the job market, especially in the context of increased numbers of disabled people;
• A graduate of this course will sensitise and help work settings comply with relevant legislation in this field;
• The course will provide a gateway to doctoral studies in the area.
Click here to access the Programme of Study applicable from 2020/1.

Last Updated: 30 September 2020

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.