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Childhood Studies & Early Years (MA)

Course Description

Recognise and champion the uniqueness of every child as you take a 'whole child' holistic approach to children, from birth to 18, and their families. You will have the opportunity to study the theory and practice through two distinct routes Early Years or Children and Young People.

Our interdisciplinary and global approach to study and research reflects a commitment to children's rights, social justice for children, child-centred learning and developing awareness of social divisions in childhood.

The Early Years route explores young children's learning, education and care across multiple settings. The Children and Young People route focuses more closely on critically examining concepts, contexts and intervention across different spheres of childhood. Both routes emphasise children and young people as social actors with rights and entitlements, according to their particular cultural and social differences.

We're committed to children's rights, social justice for children, child-centred learning and developing awareness of social divisions in childhood, and these themes are at the heart of this course, forming the basis of your study and research.

- 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

Visit the website http://courses.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/childhoodearlyyears_ma

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 (http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/studenthub/recognition-of-prior-learning.htm).

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.


This course is ideal if you work - or you aspire to work - in early years settings, therapeutic services, youth work, criminal justice service, play-work, child health, teaching, social work or related children's services. The education graduate job market is competitive and a postgraduate qualification in childhood studies and early years is designed to give you an edge.

- Early Years Advisor
- Nursery Co-ordinator
- Children's Charity Worker
- Social Worker

Careers advice:
The dedicated Jobs and Careers team offers expert advice and a host of resources to help you choose and gain employment. Whether you're in your first or final year, you can speak to members of staff from our Careers Office who can offer you advice from writing a CV to searching for jobs.

Visit the careers site - https://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/employability/jobs-careers-support.htm

Course Benefits

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.

Howard Stones

Senior Lecturer in the School of Education

"Our course provides you with the theories, concepts, knowledge and skills to explore children's lives in a global context. This academic course will appeal to anyone who is interested in studying, or working with, children from birth to eighteen."

Howard taught secondary school physics and mathematics for ten years. Subsequently, he has worked on photographic and drama projects with young people before moving to higher education to lecture in community studies, managing change in community, applied criminal justice and childhood.


- Online library
Global access to Leeds Beckett's extensive online library, with over 100,000 electronic journals, books and databases to supercharge your study.

- Dedicated Support Team
A highly-skilled and dedicated support team whose job is to work with you through every step of your online learning.

- Virtual Learning Environment
A Virtual Learning Environment that?s easy to use and available whenever and wherever you are.

Find out how to apply here - http://www.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/postgraduate/how-to-apply/

Visit the Childhood Studies & Early Years (MA) page on the Leeds Beckett University website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Pavla Beier

After doing my Masters, I have a much broader knowledge of the psychological and developmental stages of young audiences. From that, I have gained a deeper understanding as to why they respond in the ways they do.

Pavla Beier
Assistant Artistic Director, Theatre Company Blah Blah Blah in

(Student Profile)

Natalie Storey

The modules on the MA allowed me to pick areas of study I could apply directly to my classroom practice. The course has given me many experiences to draw upon and it reflects the ever changing world of education.

Natalie Storey
Reception Class Teacher, Lilycroft Primary School


Entry Requirements

Please check our site for the most up-to-date entry requirements (View Website).

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