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MA Education: Early Childhood

Course Description

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.

Course detail

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.


• Developing Criticality
• Methods of Enquiry
• Global Perspectives on Education
• Critical Contemporary Issues in Education in a National Context
• Local Independent Study/Project

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.

How to apply

For information on how to apply, please see the following link:

Other sources of funding

Information on alternative sources of funding can be found here:

Visit the MA Education: Early Childhood page on the York St John University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

You may apply if you have an honours degree in an appropriate discipline. You will be accepted onto the programme following a satisfactory interview, references and evidence of qualifications. If you don’t have these academic qualifications you may qualify for entry based on other equivalent relevant qualifications or experience.International applicants whose first language is not English will be required to demonstrate that they possess sufficient competence in written and spoken English to succeed in the programme of study. This will normally be demonstrated by an IELTS score of 6.0 overall with not less than 5.5 in each section.

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Recipient: York St John University

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