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  • Study Type

    Full time & Part time available

  • Subject Areas


  • Start Date

    September, January

  • Course Duration

    Full-time: 1 year, Part-time: 3-6 years

  • Course Type


  • Course Fees


  • The Early Years pathway is right for you if you like working with young children.
  • It will make you think about where children are found and how the adults in their lives have 'constructed' the worlds in which children find themselves.
  • You will reflect on the nature of childhood; what do we really want from the children we work with? What are our early childhood institutions really for?
  • You will also be given the opportunity to look at how things have changed with regards to the expectation of having a highly qualified and professional workforce and consider adults who work in these environments.
  • The issue of leadership in the early years workforce is also explored.

What you will study

For both part-time and full-time students 

Core modules

  • Crafting Your Masters Study
  • Evidence Based Practice‌
  • Independent Study‌

Prescribed pathway modules  

There are two modules, each of which has a different focus. Each of them are rooted in practice, and draw extensively from recent academic literature. You will reflect critically on recent government policies and consider them in relation to their work environment, as well as local, national and international practice.

The two prescribed pathway modules are:

Children's Places

You will be given the opportunity to conduct a small project into real children’s places and examine current academic writing on how British society sees 'childhood'. You will consider:

  • To what extent do we allow children the experience of childhood?
  • What does research tell us about children’s experience of childhood and how it changes as they move from care into formal educational provision?

Children's Workforce Development

In this module, discussion will focus on the skills, knowledge and attitudes expected of those people who work with young children. You will consider:

  • How has this changed in recent years, as the expectation of a highly qualified and professional workforce has emerged?
  • How does the British early childhood workforce compare to that of other countries?

Part-time students 

Your first module will be ‘Crafting Your Masters Study’. The other pathway, core and optional modules will be available according to the schedule of delivery.As a part-time student your studying will normally take place over three academic years, potentially choosing one module per term. 

Full-time students 

As a full-time student your studying will normally take place over one academic year. The optional modules and pathway modules will be available according to the schedule of delivery. 

How you will learn

The basis of the teaching and learning is teacher-led discussion. The material for each class is published online before the class, giving students the opportunity to reflect on the content and read a little beforehand.

There is an expectation that you will bring your experience to the class and be willing to share in a dialogue with other student colleagues.

Visit the Education: Early Years (MA) page on the University of Derby website for more details!





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Recipient: University of Derby

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