Programme Convenor: Professor Jane Wills, email@example.com, 0207 882 2752/8200
The MA Community Organising is designed to provide an advanced understanding of the theory, history and practice of community organising in the wider context of contemporary academic debate about social, political and economic change. It provides the intellectual and practical training that postgraduate students require to work as a community organiser, or in a related field. At a broader level it is also designed to strengthen the cadre of community organisers being developed in the UK, through an ongoing partnership with Citizens UK.
Taking the MA Community Organising guarantees students the opportunity to work on a placement as an organiser with London Citizens, the broad-based alliance that has pioneered the London living wage, now benefiting thousands of low paid Londoners; CitySafe Havens to foster community safety; the demand for an earned regularisation to turn Strangers into Citizens; and laid the ground for a Community Land Trust as part of a People’s Olympics in 2012.
The programme is taught through a range of innovative pedagogical methods including seminars, student-led presentations and practical work experience.
We welcome part-time students who take the programme over two years – doing the core community organising modules and placement in the first year – and the research methods training and dissertation in the second year. Students are also invited to take the module Community Organising in Practice as a Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) in Community Organising. Once taken, students can then opt to return and complete the final 2/3rds of the MA in future.
Fees are spread over two years for part-time students and those taking the PGCert pay a third of the full fees – for more information about fees, please consult here: http://www.qmul.ac.uk/postgraduate/tuitionfees/index.html
Recent students have gone on to work for Citizens UK, Locality and Sussex Coast College in Hastings.
Listen to a recording of John Atlas' talk to a Community Organising Open Seminar in the School of Geography at QMUL on Monday 31 October 2011. John is author of Seeds of Change - the story of ACORN. CLICK HERE
For an outline of the work of the first cohort of Community Organising students, and to view the films they produced, see MA Community Organising Report 2010-11
MA Community Organising Report 2011-12 (including links to the films produced)
All students take the same modules:
The Theory and History of Community Organising GEG7405 (30 credits) taught on Thursday mornings, 10-12am in Semester 1 (12 weeks end September to mid December) assessed via 2 essays
Community Organising in Practice GEG7401 (60 credits: includes seminars alongside a placement as a community organiser with Citizens UK (estimated to last 200 hours over a five month period)) taught on Thursday afternoons, 2-4pm in both Semester 1 and 2 (24 weeks end September to mid December and mid January to end March) assessed via a short introduction to the placement, a placement report, personal reflection and a 5 minute film
Geographical Thought and Practice GEG7120 (30 credits) taught on Mondays 12-2pm in Semesters 1 and 2, providing an introduction to research philosophy, design and practice. Assessment includes the dissertation proposal.
Dissertation (Mode C 15 000 words, 60 credits) submitted at the end of August.
The programme team consists of Professor Jane Wills (programme convenor) and Lord Maurice Glasman (London Metropolitan University) with the potential for all human geography staff at Queen Mary to act as dissertation supervisors. The programme has been developed in close liaison with Neil Jameson (Executive Director of Citizens UK). The senior organisers working at London Citizens provide mentoring support for students taking the programme. Outside speakers and experts are also invited into class and have included Arnie Graf (IAF), Leo Penta (DICO), Phillip Blond (Respublica), Ruhana Ali (London Citizens), Dr Sebastien Chapleau (London Citizens), Rev Angus Ritchie (CTC), Professor Luke Bretherton (Kings), Professor Jamie Peck (UBC) and John Atlas (author of Seeds of Change).
The Jellicoe Bursary
We are also very pleased to have one Jellicoe Bursary to offer each year as part of the Jellicoe Internship programme (run by the Contextual Theology Centre (CTC).
This bursary provides £2000 to a Christian studying for the MA Community Organising programme at Queen Mary who wishes to be placed in one of the CTC partner churches for their placement. The student will work as a community organiser, based in this partner church between November and April, as part of the work completed for the module Community Organising in Practice. The CTC will also help the recipient to find accommodation in the neighbourhood - possibly with other Jellicoe Interns – and the student would be part of a network of other students working with the CTC.
Any of the Christian students accepted onto the MA Community Organising programme can apply for this bursary. The candidates will meet with Rev Angus Ritchie (Director of the CTC) to discuss their motivation in applying for the MA and the bursary, as well as possible placements. Once a suitable candidate is identified and a placement is agreed, the bursary will be awarded for the academic year. The award will be made on a first-apply first-awarded basis each year. Those who are interested need to apply as early as possible and indicate their interest on the application form and/or statement.
For more detail:
MA Community Organising [PDF 5.13 MB]