Our MA Education: Early Childhood programme offers you the opportunity to learn about and develop your knowledge of current issues from a wide range of perspectives on education and to focus your study towards your particular interest in Early Childhood. The Year One modules introduce you to the skills you need for Master’s level study and you will develop in-depth knowledge of a range of approaches and methods through which education is investigated. In Year Two there is a choice to adopt a local, national or global perspective. You might choose to study global changes and effects on education or contemporary educational issues and changes at national level, or you might have a specific ‘local’ issue you want to study. This ‘local’ issue might be something relevant to you and your employer if you are employed in a work setting, or it might be a special interest in some aspect of Early Childhood that you choose to examine in more depth. In Year Three you will study the Dissertation/Major Project and the focus for this study will be on Early Childhood. You will have a specific tutor who will supervise this work.
We have designed the MA programmes to support you to engage proactively in education from a theoretical or practical approach, or a combination of the two.
We include creative approaches to teaching, learning and assessment and you are supported by a team of tutors who are active researchers. We have designed the programme to enable you to study with others who are interested in a wide range of educational issues; for example people working in primary, secondary, post-compulsory or higher education; libraries and archive professionals; people working in museum education; people with mentor roles; Early Years teachers, play workers or Children’s Centre managers.
The course engages you with current issues and debates in education, enabling you to gain critical awareness and understanding and to develop new insights. You will engage in research and advanced scholarship in the discipline and will develop as a self-directed, independent learner who is able to deal with complex issues both systematically and creatively. In the first year of part-time study you will study two modules:
This will normally be the first module as it introduces students to studying at Master’s level. It aims to build students’ capacity for sustained criticality through the review of contemporary, published, academic writing and the acquisition of critical writing skills.
Methods of Enquiry
This module is valuable study for all students and those whose target award is the Master’s degree will apply the learning from this module to the dissertation study. The Methods of Enquiry module enables students to engage critically with research evidence and to develop in-depth and comprehensive knowledge of a range of approaches and methods through which education is investigated. Students will develop critical understandings of the relationship(s) between research, policy and practice through reflecting on, and engaging with, examples of educational research, including research which is led by members of the MA Education programme team. In the second year of part-time study you will study a further two modules chosen from the ‘global, national, local’ choices:
Global Perspectives on Education
This module comprises the global element of the distinctive ‘Global, National, Local’ structure within the MA Education. Students develop, deepen and/or broaden their knowledge and gain a critical understanding of global change on educational processes and systems If you chose this module you could agree to focus your assignment on an interest such as Reggio Emilia or Te Whariki for example.
Critical Contemporary Issues in Education in a National Context
This module comprises the national element of the distinctive ‘Global, National, Local’ structure within the MA Education. Students develop, deepen and/or broaden their knowledge and gain a critical understanding of contemporary issues in education at a national level. If you chose this module you could agree with the tutor to focus your assignment on an interest such as approaches to developing quality in Early Years and the Nutbrown review for example.
Local Independent Study/Project
This module provides an opportunity for students to broaden and/or deepen their knowledge and understanding of a subject relevant to their own development. The module comprises the local element designed to support the exploration of issues of significance that are smaller in scale than those explored through either the global or national focus. If you chose this module you could agree with the tutor to focus on the exploration of an issue relevant to you. This may be something you are developing in your setting if you work in an Early Years context or an interest in some aspect of early childhood which you have developed and would like to study further.
Dissertation: Early Childhood
This module is the culmination of the MA Education. It engages students in a substantial piece of research focused on a topic that is relevant to an educational context and manageable within the time and credit constraints of a Master’s dissertation. The focus and nature of the investigation will be agreed with your supervisor; for example it could be an investigation into developing parental involvement in early learning or young children’s perceptions of outdoor play.
Major Project: Early Childhood
This module is the culmination of the MA Education. It engages students in a substantial piece of research investigation and artefact development on a topic relevant to an educational context and manageable within the time and credit constraints of a Master’s dissertation. The focus, nature of the investigation and intended output will be negotiated and agreed with your supervisor; for example the written component could be an investigation into strategies to promote smooth transition from Foundation Stage to Key Stage One, together with artefacts including a dissemination strategy you have developed which may include a booklet and good practice guidelines for practitioners in the setting.
You require an honours degree in an appropriate discipline, satisfactory interview, references and evidence of qualifications. You may qualify for entry based on other equivalent relevant qualifications or experience. International applicants whose first language isn't English will be required to demonstrate they possess sufficient competence in written/spoken English to succeed. If you have a PGCE gained within the last five years we recognise up to 60 relevant M level credits for this to provide exemption from 2 modules normally studied in the second year of part-time study, you would complete and pass the first-year modules and proceed to dissertation study.
Recipient: York St John University
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