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Our Child Studies MA is a multidisciplinary course designed to meet the needs of professionals and graduates working or intending to work with or on behalf of children and young people. The course is particularly suited to anyone in a child safeguarding role, including social workers, child and family lawyers, named or designated health practitioners, teachers, police officers and NGO staff.

Key benefits

  • Internationally renowned speakers, clinicians and academics contribute to delivery of the MA Child Studies.
  • We offer a multi-disciplinary approach to childhood issues and current policy developments.
  • You will study modules based on contemporary issues in child protection and children’s rights.
  • We provide opportunities for you to collaborate and share ideas and experiences with others from different disciplines.


The Child Studies MA is a demanding course that concentrates on an academic and analytical approach to modern-day issues of childhood. The course features a range of modules that are highly relevant to those who are working or intending to work with vulnerable children. We welcome graduates from a variety of disciplines and professions including medicine, education, law, social care, psychology and sociology.

The course combines a range of required and optional modules to a value of between 180 and 190 credits. In addition to a required dissertation, you will take required modules covering Children’s Rights and Child Protection, and then choose from a wide range of relevant optional modules, such as Global Childhoods, Child Health & Development, and Psychology & Learning. 

Course format and assessment


We use lectures, seminars and group tutorials to deliver most of the modules on the course. A significant proportion of teaching on the course is delivered by expert external lecturers, both academics and practitioners. You will also be expected to undertake a significant amount of independent study. Typically, one credit equates to 10 hours of work.

The teaching contact time for each 30-credit taught Child Studies module is typically 30.5-32 hours. In addition each module will involve one hour of supervision/Q&A time. The typical teaching contact time for each 30-credit taught ‘Education’ optional module is 20 hours. Teaching sessions will usually include lectures, and teacher-led and student-led group discussions based on the main areas of study.

There are 12 hours of teaching for the internship module; this is supplemented by the support of Careers and Employability and mentoring through the internship itself. Students also complete at least 160 hours of employment. Each 30-credit taught module has 267-280 (or 288 for the internship module) hours of self-guided learning time.

For the dissertation module, you will receive 22 hours of research methods training. You may also choose to take research methods as an optional module. You will also receive six to eight hours of dissertation workshops, and you are entitled to up to 9 hours of individual dissertation supervision, to complement the approximately 561-563 hours of self-study.

Contact hours for optional modules taken outside of the course may vary.


This course is assessed by a combination of essays, reports, presentations, research proposals and case studies. Your assessment methods will be determined by your choice of optional modules. The dissertation is an extended piece of writing of 16,000 words.

Career prospects

Our graduates frequently progress to senior practitioner posts involving child-related work, as well as further study at PhD level. Child Studies MA graduates include the Head of the National FGM Centre, the founder of the first multi-disciplinary unit for young people at a London hospital and a pioneer in parent abuse. Graduates have gone on to work in a range of settings including local government and NGOs such as the British Red Cross.

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Visit the Child Studies MA page on the King’s College London website for more details!