You will engage with the key theoretical debates in Childhood Studies and aim to develop a critical analytical approach to understanding the influence of cultural representations of children's voice, agency and participation. You will experience an interdisciplinary approach to the study of children's lives and childhood globally through psychological, sociological and anthropological approaches
You will identify a research project on a focus of interest arising from your studies that in consultation with an appropriate course tutor. You will write a 20,000 word dissertation that will be supervised and guided by your tutor.
You will explore a range of theoretical and policy oriented material at both national and international levels. You will develop understanding of issues relating to children's rights, citizenship and participation, as well as critically examining debates around social inclusion. You will have opportunity to critically discuss the implications for an inclusive pedagogy and special needs education, the diversity of children's lives in relation to issues such as disability, ethnicity and race, and socio-economic inequality.
You will focus on gender, the body and identity as key to the understanding of children in different social and cultural contexts. You will have an opportunity for in-depth engagement with the lived experience of children and the representations of children as engendered and embodied beings, and to critically examine questions of identity and diversity. You will have opportunity to engage with a range of different media including children's literature, art and images from textual, semiotic and anthropological perspectives.
You will focus on families in different cultural contexts through exploration of contemporary forms of relationships and practices. You will also examine the ways children and families act as catalysts for educational change. You will explore children's rights within the family, the community and schools with reference to appropriate conventions and legislation. You will have opportunity to research and discuss such concepts as sustainability, social capital, empowerment and social cohesion within communities and the contribution of government initiatives to the lives and educational development of young children and their families.
You will be part of a reading group for in-depth discussion of key childhood research texts. The group will critically examine the relationships between concepts, theories and methods and relate childhood research and pivotal themes in human and social science. The readings will aim to develop reading and practical writing skills.