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Childhood Studies and Early Years
Postgraduate course
MA

Childhood Studies and Early Years

You can study this course part-time over two or three years, on campus or by distance learning. The two year route is eligible for the government postgraduate loan scheme, applicants who meet the standard criteria can apply for funding.
International Scholarships available

Overview

Recognise and champion the uniqueness of every child as you take an holistic 'whole child' approach to the study of children and the issues that affect them and their families. Using the latest research, you will explore the theoretical and conceptual terrain of childhood to inform and develop your own practice. This course will enable you to specialise your study through two distinct routes - Early Years and Children & Young People.

The Early Years route will see you apply a critical lens to young children's education and care within a variety of settings. The Children and Young People route will focus more closely on critically examining concepts, contexts and practice related to childhood.

We recognise that children are active social agents and meaning makers with the ability to both interpret and shape their social worlds. Therefore, each module has been designed to highlight the importance of the child's voice and children's participation.

To fit around your working patterns and personal commitments, you can study over one, two or three years through day, evening and Saturday face-to-face sessions or online via our Virtual Learning Environment.



Research Excellence Framework 2014
Research Excellence Framework 2014: twice as many of our staff - 220 - were entered into the research assessment for 2014 compared to the number entered in 2008.
You can study this course over one, two or three years. It's delivered through day, evening and Saturday sessions or via distance learning to fit around your working pattern.

This course is valuable if you want to explore contemporary issues about children's and young people's social, political, cultural and educational lives in a global context. We have students from a variety of professional backgrounds on the course which encourages a significant number of valid and relevant perspectives in class discussions. We also draw ideas from a great variety of academic disciplines including history, geography philosophy, psychology, sociology and anthropology. All of these things mean that you will come away from your course with a broader and more developed view of the sector and what children and young people need today.

We understand that full-time study does not suit everyone. That’s why we offer courses which give you the opportunity to decide where, when and how you can get involved in learning. Studying a distance learning course offers the convenience and flexibility to make education work for you. Whether you’d like to fit your studies around childcare, develop your skills while working or, quite simply, want to learn from the comfort of your own home, we can help you gain a qualification at a time and pace that suits your lifestyle.

Like our students on campus, you will have the same excellent teaching and learning resources, however you’ll find these online instead of in a lecture theatre. Not only are all the modules taught online, but you will also have access to an online community and more than 140,000 books and journals in our online library.

Visit our Distance Learning Website

This course offers the opportunity to take a ‘sandwich’ year – a year of paid employment in industry which will build your skills and experience. This is usually taken between the second and third year of your degree, typically making your course four years in total.

Students who choose the sandwich route find it helps with both their studies and getting a job after graduation. It can build your confidence, contacts, and of course your CV. Leeds Beckett advertise lots of placement opportunities and provide support in helping you find the right placement for you.

Play Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself Video
Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself

 

Entry Requirements

Requirements

Applicants should either have at least a second class honours degree or have equivalent experience or training, normally from within the work environment. All applications should be supported by a reference, either academic or professional; a template can be accessed at this link. All applicants should satisfy our University English language requirements, please access further details at this link
IELTS:
IELTS 6.0 with no skills below 5.5, or an equivalent qualification. The University provides excellent support for any applicant who may be required to undertake additional English language courses.
Mature Applicants
Our University welcomes applications from mature applicants who demonstrate academic potential. We usually require some evidence of recent academic study, for example completion of an access course, however recent relevant work experience may also be considered. Please note that for some of our professional courses all applicants will need to meet the specified entry criteria and in these cases work experience cannot be considered in lieu.

If you wish to apply through this route you should refer to our University Recognition of Prior Learning policy that is available on our website.

Please note that all applicants to our University are required to meet our standard English language requirement of GCSE grade C or equivalent, variations to this will be listed on the individual course entry requirements.

Requirements

Applicants should either have at least a second class honours degree or have equivalent experience or training, normally from within the work environment. All applications should be supported by a reference, either academic or professional; a template can be accessed at this link. All applicants should satisfy our University English language requirements, please access further details at this link
IELTS:
IELTS 6.0 with no skills below 5.5, or an equivalent qualification. The University provides excellent support for any applicant who may be required to undertake additional English language courses.
Verify your qualifications
If you are an international student, we can help you to compare and verify your qualifications. Please contact our International Office on +44 (0)113 812 1111 09.00 to 17.00 Mon-Thurs / 09.00 to 16.30 Fri GMT or email internationaloffice@leedsbeckett.ac.uk.
Need to improve your English Language skills?
Don't worry if you don't have the level of English required for your chosen course. We offer a wide range of courses which have been designed to help you to improve your qualifications and English language ability, most of which are accredited by the British Council. Check your English and find out more about our English courses.


More questions?
No matter what your questions, we are here to answer them, visit our International website to get more information and find out about our online open days.

Careers

Nick Little

Careers

Nick Little
Reception Teacher Harehills Primary School, Leeds

MA Childhood Studies & Early Years

“I'm really passionate about the positive impact education can have on children's lives. Having completed my teacher training, I was keen to learn more about the influence of early years education on a child's development. My masters has allowed me to reflect on the impact I can have on this development as a teacher. I've gained a much better understanding of the factors that can shape a child before they start school and what we can do to help them continue to develop once they do start.

Teaching and learning

Distance Learning - overall workload

If you choose to study this course by distance learning, as a guideline you will need to allocate around 10 hours per week to complete each module plus a further five hours for additional reading and assignments. These 10 hours of teaching and learning will be delivered using a range of interactive resources, this typically includes audio and video content, group discussions, reflective exercises, quizzes, online reading and much more. All these resources are delivered through our Virtual Learning Environment and can be accessed at a time and place that suits you.

Develop an understanding of the ways in which discourse works to construct different ways of thinking about childhood and early years. You will learn to identify dominant, competing and contradictory discourses of childhood and the ways in which they are encoded in a range of cultural texts.

Gain the skills to critically assess the work of others, and the knowledge to begin conducting your own research.

You will be encouraged to think about children's interests and priorities as expressed through their playful engagements.

Explore the ways that children develop concepts of social identities from early years to adolescence. You will investigate the ways in which social, political and cultural forces influence children's identities and the extent to which identity is assumed or enforced.

Negotiate, plan, conduct and evaluate a research project that is relevant to the theoretical and professional content of this course.

Explore the ways in which childhood has been conceived of by a variety of different disciplines, and the contribution of the social studies of childhood towards advancing our understanding of contemporary childhood.

You will be encouraged to think about children's interests and priorities as expressed through their playful engagements.

Explore the ways that children develop concepts of social identities from early years to adolescence. You will investigate the ways in which social, political and cultural forces influence children's identities and the extent to which identity is assumed or enforced.

Explore children's experiences of and entanglements with the criminal justice system, in a variety of different roles, from birth until adolescence.

Conduct a detailed and in-depth study in a topic of your interest.

Explore children's engagement with and participation in cultural phenomenon and cultural texts produced by and for children.

This module focuses on young children's early language development and communication. You will explore children's linguistic development; language diversity and multimodal communication; and the importance of quality provision and practice at home and in early childhood education and care settings.

You will be introduced to recent theoretical developments in the field of childhood and early years that have sought to 'reclaim' physical, biological and material aspects of childhood as significant elements of children's experiences of the world.

Explore the changing function, role and structure of families and analyse the nature of the family as reflected within contemporary social policy and professional practice.

Gain an understanding of the ways in which academic communities operate, the function of academic networks and the role of peer review and collaboration.

This module provides an introduction to a range of key critical perspectives in the analysis of literature; an historical and critical look at representations of childhood in English literature; and a critical consideration of the development of children's literature and the representation of childhood.

Examine the evolving nature of the social history of education and its practices (from early childhood to higher education and professional education), focusing on what goes in the spaces in which teachers, learners, and the curriculum interact with each other.

Explore the use of Abhinaya (mime and expression) as a technique for enhancing and amplifying your storytelling.

Play Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself Video
Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself

 

Fees & funding

Studying part-time gives you the flexibility to learn at your own pace. Because of this, our tuition fees are calculated using credit points. Each module you study has a credit point value. Most taught postgraduate modules have a credit point value of 20. The tuition fee for students entering in in 2018/19 on this course is £611 for each 20 credit point module. For modules with a different credit point value their cost can be calculated by multiplying the credit value of the module by the cost per credit point of £30.55. The amount you will pay may increase each year in line with inflation.
See further information on financing your studies.

Tuition fees
Your tuition fees cover the cost of registration, tuition, academic supervision, assessments and examinations.
The following are also included in the cost of your course:

  • 24/7 Library and student IT support
  • Free wifi via eduroam
  • Skills workshops and resources
  • Library membership, giving access to more than 500,000 printed, multimedia and digital resources
  • Access to software, including five free copies of Microsoft Office 365 to install on your PC, laptop and MAC, and access to free high-end software via the Leeds Beckett remote app
  • Loan of high-end media equipment to support your studies.

Other study-related expenses to consider: books (the library stocks books from your module reading list but you may wish to purchase copies for yourself); placement costs (these may include travel expenses and living costs); student visas (international students only); printing, photocopying and stationery; field trips; study abroad opportunities (travel costs and accommodation, visas and immunisations); PC/laptop (provided on campus in social learning spaces and in the library. However, you may prefer to have your own); mobile phone/tablet (to access University online services); academic conferences (travel costs); professional-body membership (where applicable); and graduation (gown hire and guest tickets).

This list is not exhaustive and costs will vary depending on the choices you make during your course. Any rental or living costs are also in addition to your course fees.

Studying part-time gives you the flexibility to learn at your own pace. Because of this, our tuition fees are calculated using credit points. Each module you study has a credit point value. Most taught postgraduate modules have a credit point value of 20. The tuition fee for students entering in in 2018/19 on this course is £611 for each 20 credit point module. For modules with a different credit point value their cost can be calculated by multiplying the credit value of the module by the cost per credit point of £30.55. The amount you will pay may increase each year in line with inflation.
See further information on fees and finance on our Financing Your Studies webpage.

Tuition fees
Your tuition fees cover the cost of registration, tuition, academic supervision, assessments and examinations.
The following are also included in the cost of your course:

  • 24/7 Library and student IT support
  • Free wifi via eduroam
  • Skills workshops and resources
  • Library membership, giving access to more than 500,000 printed, multimedia and digital resources
  • Access to software, including five free copies of Microsoft Office 365 to install on your PC, laptop and MAC, and access to free high-end software via the Leeds Beckett remote app
  • Loan of high-end media equipment to support your studies.

Other study-related expenses to consider: books (the library stocks books from your module reading list but you may wish to purchase copies for yourself); placement costs (these may include travel expenses and living costs); student visas (international students only); printing, photocopying and stationery; field trips; study abroad opportunities (travel costs and accommodation, visas and immunisations); PC/laptop (provided on campus in social learning spaces and in the library. However, you may prefer to have your own); mobile phone/tablet (to access University online services); academic conferences (travel costs); professional-body membership (where applicable); and graduation (gown hire and guest tickets).

This list is not exhaustive and costs will vary depending on the choices you make during your course. Any rental or living costs are also in addition to your course fees.

Facilities

  • Library and online resources
    Library and online resources

    Our Library is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year, providing you with access to specialist books and journals, learning spaces, computers, multimedia facilities and media equipment hire. Tens of thousands of our Library's digital resources, including ebooks, ejournals and databases, can be accessed online at a time and place to suit you.

  • Headingley Campus
    Headingley Campus

    Our historic Headingley Campus is set in 100 acres of parkland with easy access to Leeds city centre.

  • Dedicated Support Team
    Dedicated Support Team

    Just because you aren't learning on campus doesn't mean you'll have to cope on your own - you'll have the support of a personal tutor along with the University's Student Hub and Wellbeing Centre. They are on hand to offer you advice about everything from academic issues to stress and anxiety.

  • Virtual Learning Environment
    Virtual Learning Environment

    The VLE gives you access to course materials such as videos, e-books and other documents. You also use it to submit your assignments and to receive feedback.

Location

Distance Learning

Distance Learning

We understand that full-time study does not suit everyone. That’s why we offer courses which give you the opportunity to decide where, when and how you get can get involved in learning. Our flexible courses – internet-based learning and part-time options – give you more choice, convenience and flexibility to make education work for you. Whether you’d like to fit your studies around childcare, develop your skills while working or, quite simply, want to learn from the comfort of your own home, we can help you gain a qualification at a time and pace that suits your lifestyle.

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We host a range of on campus and virtual open days throughout the year, giving you the opportunity to discover life at Leeds Beckett University. Find out more about your course, financing your studies, our range of accommodation and the vibrant city of Leeds.

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