MSc in Pedagogical Science and Education; children, families and schools

Erasmus University Rotterdam - Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences

Program Description

MSc in Pedagogical Science and Education; children, families and schools

Erasmus University Rotterdam - Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences

Pedagogy and Education: Children, families and Schools

Master of Science (MSc) in Pedagogy and Education

Master of Science (MSc) in Pedagogy and Education

Interested in youth, families and schools with multiple and complex urban problems? Become a policymaker, consultant or researcher by enrolling in the Master programme in Pedagogy and Education.

Are you interested in finding out which methods work for which children in urban schools and in classrooms with diverse student populations? Do you wonder about the impact of parenting, day-care, or social media on child development?

The specialisation of Educational Sciences includes modules that concern current scientific theories on the effectiveness of both teaching methods and schools, while the specialisation of Child & Family Studies focuses on Parenting in Contemporary Society. It includes the impact of societal changes on family functioning, like social media and the role of fathers.

Why study a Master in Pedagogy and Education in Rotterdam?

  • Best Master programme in Pedagogy and Education in the Netherlands according to the Keuzegids 2016 (Dutch study choice guide).
  • The structure of the programme and the Problem Based Learning system allows students to put theory into practice while studying.
  • Intensive interaction between lecturers and students, small classes, and accessible teachers.

Choose your specialisation

The Master programme in Pedagogy and Education offers one specialisation. Please see below for information about this specialisation within this Master programme. Whether a specialisation is offered full-time or part-time is indicated accordingly.

What is this specialisation about?

The specialisation Educational Sciences addresses a number of the main issues that are currently relevant in education: educational innovations, assessment and testing and the growing diversity in pupils’ backgrounds. The starting point in our programme concerns the idea that successful solutions are always based on analyses at the micro level (the student), meso level (the learning environment and the school) and macro level (societal trends and educational policy). The programme uses actual cases and issues which will be solved using small group work.

You will deepen your research skills through an advanced module in methodology and statistics, after which you will be well prepared for a professional career, your internship or research project and master's thesis.

Why choose this programme?

Are you also interested in finding out what works and what does not work for children in urban schools and in classrooms with diverse student populations? Do you want to make a contribution to future innovations in education around the world? This specialisation is the right choice for you.


The curriculum for each specialisation consists of a series of theme-related courses. All of the activities during this course, i.e., lectures, tutorials, practical meetings, and assignments are specifically focused on this theme. Every course consists of a theoretical part (knowledge) and a practical part (skills). Please mind that the following curriculum is representative of the current academic year. Adjustments to the curriculum and descriptions of courses will be added in the course of the year; a definitive curriculum can be seen by the spring of the current academic year.

Career opportunities

Is it your ambition to work in the field of pedagogy or education? Think about jobs in child protection services, youth residential organisations and educational institutes. Increasingly, these organisations yearn for professionals who are able to act upon complex problems. You might be the right candidate for them!

After graduation you are able to:

  • Implement intervention programmes for children, families, and school, and test the effectiveness of these programmes;
  • Contribute to educational innovation and policy, focusing on diversity and urban problems;
  • Use your knowledge and skills in development, parenting, and education to collaborate with professionals in the field.

Child and Family Studies

Being a family pedagogue after completing the specialisation Child and Family Studies, you can work as a trainer, advisor, supervisor, manager or researcher at:

  • Well-baby clinics;
  • Youth care organisations;
  • Child protection services;
  • Day-care centres;
  • Youth residential institutions;
  • Adoption organisations;
  • Societal and governmental organisations and universities.

Educational Sciences

Graduates in Educational sciences will be suitable candidates for positions as

  • Educational researcher in public or private institutions;
  • Educational policy maker in governmental, municipal, or institutional organizations or platforms;
  • Curriculum advisor/developer in schools, educational counselling services, or in-company training departments of businesses;
  • Educational coordinator in schools, educational institutes, or in-company training departments of businesses;
  • Programme manager in international and national educational platforms.

Teaching method

The curriculum of the Master’s in Pedagogy and Education in Rotterdam is characterized by a unique learning method, which has proven to be very successful over the years. This educational system is referred to as Problem-Based Learning (PBL). In PBL students have an active role and they themselves are to a large degree responsible for their own learning process.

Students in the PBL system work in small groups, meeting once a week to analyse academic and societal problems. Since the emphasis is on self-study and elaboration, lectures have functions different from what is common elsewhere: they do not focus on knowledge transfer but rather on critical discussion of theories studied in advance by the students and a thorough understanding of the subjects.

PBL significantly contributes to students’ ability to collect and interpret relevant information. These are all skills that graduates of the Master Pedagogy and Education and their future colleagues and employers will benefit from directly.

Problem-based discussion groups (once a week) will be supported by lectures (once a week) and skills training (once a week). Each module ends with a knowledge test and a skills test.


Prior education

You are eligible for admission to the programme if you have obtained a relevant Bachelor or undergraduate degree from a research university in the following fields of studies:

  • Child development;
  • Education;
  • Pedagogy;
  • Psychology.
  • Students with a Bachelor’s in other related fields of social and/or behavioural sciences may also be eligible to apply if they have a well-balanced combination of various credentials.

Considering the different understanding and treatment of pedagogy-related concepts and an attempt to provide an indication of the required background, a potential candidate is expected to have obtained:

  • At least 10 ECTS in courses in statistics / advanced research methodology and at least basic SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) skills. You are expected to be familiar with the following statistical techniques (and be able to apply them in SPSS): descriptive statistics, correlation, hypothesis testing, between-subjects versus within-subjects designs, multiple regression, 1-factor and 2-factor ANOVA, repeated measures-ANOVA, MANOVA, GLM, psychometrics, non-parametric testing.
  • at least 15 ECTS in courses related to education, pedagogy or child development – depending on your choice of specialisation/ track;
  • ethical and professional knowledge and skills.

Please have a look here for additional information on your prior education. If you are in doubt about whether your qualification is suitable, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Proof of proficiency in the English language

Please note that the test may not be older than two years at the time of application. Also, note that it takes several weeks before the results of the tests are known. Take this into consideration when you think of applying. Without the results, we will not be able to assess your application.

Language Test Minimum Score Minimum Sub-scores
TOEFL (our TOEFL ID Code 5971) 90 (internet based) 20
IELTS 6.5 6.0
CEF (Common European Framework) C1-level -
Cambridge EFL (English as a Foreign Language) Examinations CAE level B; CPE level C -


You might be exempted from presenting the proof of English proficiency if:

  • You are a native speaker of English (i.e. a national of one of the following countries: Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, United Kingdom and the United States of America) and you have obtained a diploma of secondary education in English for at least 2,5 years in one of the above countries and/or
  • You have obtained a diploma of International Baccalaureate (valid for 5 years) and/or
  • You have obtained your diploma of higher education in English (the entire programme).

Please mind that in case you believe that you qualify for exemption you need to present a proof thereof. If you have obtained your diploma of higher education in English we need to see a written proof of it in the form of either a passage in the diploma, grade list, or a letter from the university stating that the language of instruction was English for the entire programme

Academic performance

In addition to the credentials mentioned above, the Admissions Board will also take into account your academic performance, i.e. your grades. Please note that there is no minimum score or average grade mentioned; your application will be assessed against the pool of applicants of the given year.

This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated March 15, 2018
Duration & Price
This course is Campus based
Start Date
Start date
Sept. 2019
1 year
Full time
14,500 EUR
(Non EU/EEA) €2002 EU
Netherlands - Rotterdam, South Holland
Start date : Sept. 2019
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info
Sept. 2019
Netherlands - Rotterdam, South Holland
Application deadline Request Info
End date Request Info