The academic study of children’s literature has developed over the past 30 years and is now a recognised multidisciplinary field of enquiry. This programme will enable you to explore the relationship between reader, writer, text and context, and consider the critical perspectives that underpin those interactions.
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Why study MA Children's Literature at Goldsmiths?
This course will deepen your familiarity with a range of children's literature, from 'classic' works to contemporary texts. Through this, you'll develop a detailed knowledge of the issues and debates in the field, analysing children's literature using theories from education, cultural studies, literary theory, psychology, sociology, history and philosophy.
We foster a critical stance towards children's literature, academic reading, and ideological underpinning. All of our staff are actively involved in research in the fields of education and children's literature. Award-winning author Michael Rosen is part of the leading team on this programme.
The programme aims to incorporate and respond to your unique background as an individual. we encourage you to use this to address the challenging issues of representation and diversity in children's literature. You may come from a publishing background or work in education or children's media. If you have a passion for children's literature then this is the course for you.
Students on this programme's creative writing pathway will be able to work with published creative writing lecturers, including the novelists Ardashir Vakil and Sara Grant, to create short stories, novels, and poems for children and young adults. Creative writing alumni have had their work published, including a recent book by Dashe Roberts 'The Bigwoof Conspiracy (2020); a creative writing handbook co-authored by Harry Oulton 'The Writing Deck: 53 Prompts for Putting Pen to Paper (2019); and Anna Dempsey won the Costa Short Story Award (2019).
Goldsmiths is ranked in the world's top 100 for English Language and Literature (QS World University Subject Rankings 2021).
We also offer an MA Children's Literature: Children's Illustration for those who want to illustrate children's books.
What you'll study
Common Compulsory Modules
Whether you choose the Issues and Debates, or the Creative Writing pathway, you will take the following two compulsory modules.
Children's Literature: Theory and Criticism
Children’s Literature, Culture and Diversity
Issues and Debates pathway
Students on this pathway will study the following compulsory modules.
Researching Children's Literature
You should have (or expect to be awarded) an undergraduate degree of at least second class standard in a related field.
You might also be considered for some programmes if you aren’t a graduate or your degree is in an unrelated field, but have relevant experience and can show that you have the ability to work at postgraduate level.
Additional Entry Requirement for the Creative Writing Pathway
To apply to study on the Creative Writing Pathway you should follow the usual application process, submitting a substantial piece or pieces of original creative writing, up to a maximum of 3,000 words, with your application. This work does not have to be in the form of writing for children/young adults. It will be considered by the Module Leader of the Workshop in Creative and Life Writing.Your submission should include one item from the following list: 1 short story; 7-10 poems; 1 or 2 extracts from a novel; 1 or 2 extracts from non-fiction writing, for example, memoir.
Graduates will be well placed to specialise in children’s literature in a range of careers:
Writing texts for children
Youth and community work
You will acquire a wide-ranging understanding of the field of children’s literature and the social, political cultural processes that surround it. You will also develop your critical thinking, communication and research skills.