MA Childhood in Society
"This course is designed to appeal to a wide range of professionals working in child-related fields in health, education and social care, and to graduates seeking to working the research field of children and childhood"
Dr Michael Wyness, Course Leader
We welcome international and home students from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures. The course is attractive to new graduates, practitioners and professionals in education, children's services, child-related international organisations and voluntary sector organisations, and educational and childhood researchers.
Course aims and benefits
The MA Childhood in Society is interdisciplinary, addressing the UN definition of childhood in the age range 0-18 years. You will develop an awareness of key theoretical, empirical and policy-oriented studies of children (0-18 years) and childhood. You will gain a familiarity with interdisciplinary perspectives and frameworks in the study of children and childhood, and you will be able to demonstrate a critical engagement with debates on key childhood related themes, including children’s rights, multi-agency support for children, development and care, and the global child. You will also develop an understanding of key issues in academic and public debates in relation to children and become familiar with the diversity of children’s experiences over time and space, both locally and internationally.
You will study two core modules (30 CATS each) intended to ground your knowledge of children and childhood, and address your understanding of research methodology. You will also take two optional 30 CATS modules, with at least one coming from our child-related module options, plus a 60 CATS dissertation. This will be your individual research project, and you will receive one-to-one support from your academic supervisor.
Rethinking Children and Childhood
This core module aims to deepen and extend knowledge of key theoretical frameworks and international debates in childhood studies. It will aim to establish an understanding of central issues shaping children’s subjective experiences and the complexity of their lives in social, cultural, and educational contexts. The module also explores the nature of childhood and children’s lives from a multi-disciplinary approach, among other things drawing on the work of sociologists, psychologists, educationalists and historians.
Foundation Research Methods
The aim of this module is to stimulate your interest, understanding and participation in doing research. Most importantly, we want to support you in developing research expertise that will guide your further studies and dissertation work. You will be introduced to a range of key research principles and procedures, so that you can develop your own independent research skills that will enable you to create your own distinctive approach to educational research. The module include both general and specific aspects of research training including key dimensions of qualitative and quantitative research, their applications, understanding of relational aspects between them, and appreciation of the politics and ethics of doing educational research. FRM has been designed to contextualise educational research, in terms of its theoretical, epistemological and methodological underpinnings, for a broad cross section of students, enabling them to understand different facets of educational research in an integrated and coherent fashion. Foundation Research Methods can be taken online.
One of your optional modules will need to come from our specific childhood-related options. The other module can come from either childhood or one of our other specialist areas, such as drama and literacy, foreign language teaching pedagogy, religions and education, and leading educational change. We plan to run the following modules in 2014-15 (subject to availability).
Childhood and Bio-politics
This module concerns the relationships between children, adults, governments and industry that are unfolding as human biological functioning and human impact on the natural environment are becoming clearer and raising pressing issues. It aims to equip students with the ability to recognize and trace these relationships, to understand them in terms of existing literature and to develop appropriate research questions.
Children, Participation and Social Inclusion
Children’s participation and diversity have emerged as prominent themes at academic and policy levels within the field of Children and Childhood. These themes have also become focal points for child-related policy makers at national and international levels. This optional module will explore in some depth a range of theoretical and policy oriented material at both national and international levels in this field. The module examines the debates on children as participants in a number of contexts and their contributions as social actors and agents within a diverse range of communities In particular, it explores issues relating to children’s rights, citizenship and participation, as well as critically examining debates around social inclusion, diversity and wellbeing. The module also examines processes of globalisation and the implications this has for understanding and supporting children's participation.
Course delivery and learning styles
Most of the modules are taught over one term, either during the day or in the evenings. The sessions are taught through a mixture of seminar, reading group and workshop. Foundation Research Methods module is also available via online delivery.
The Warwick MA Childhood in Society is designed to develop the needs of both new and experienced scholars and practitioners who are either already working, or who intend to work, with children in educational, social, health or psychological settings, and/or are interested in the debates and issues of childhood as an academic discipline. It will also enhance teachers’ continuing professional development at Master’s level, enabling them to connect with a multi-agency context within which schools are now located. It is also an excellent starting point for those thinking of doing a doctorate in the field of Childhood Studies.
- 1 year
- Normally 2-5 years part-time.
- 2 core modules
- 2 options
- 4 assignments of 5000 words each
- Dissertation of 20,000 words
- At least second class honours degree or equivalent
- Normally, two references
- Degree transcripts
- English language test certificates (if appropriate)