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Course content

Programme description

This is an intensive interdisciplinary programme, designed to explore issues such as child law and how it is implemented through policy and practice, and the implications of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child for child welfare, disability, education, family studies, juvenile justice, social policy and social work.

This programme responds to the increasing importance of the study of childhood in disciplines as widespread as philosophy, sociology and geography. It offers an opportunity to develop skills in research and consultation with children and young people.

You’ll examine the implications of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and gain knowledge and analytical perspectives on particular areas of legislation, policy, theory and practice that affect children. The programme benefits from the childhood studies expertise of academic staff across the University.

Programme structure

Teaching combines lectures, seminars and tutorials, plus a combination of essays and assessed coursework. You will complete three compulsory courses and three option courses followed by an independently researched dissertation.

Career opportunities

This qualification serves both as a conversion course if you wish to pursue careers working with children or children’s issues, and as a career development opportunity if you already have experience in these fields.

Graduates have gone on to a variety of posts, such as employment with national and international non-governmental organisations, research posts and PhD study, and national and local government positions.

You will develop a range of transferable skills, such as communication and project management, which can be applied to roles in any field.


Visit the Childhood Studies (MSc) page on the University of Edinburgh website for more details!

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