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MSc in Childhood and Youth

Link to apply

Please note: This programme is only available on a part-time basis for 2014 entry. 

Course description

The MSc in Childhood and Youth offers a unique opportunity to study in one of the UK’s leading centres for childhood and youth based research. It provides students with the chance to develop their knowledge of childhood and youth and consider what it means to conduct research with children and young people at an advanced level. The programme is distinctive because it offers exciting opportunities for students to work in a truly inter-disciplinary social science environment and to benefit from a breadth of substantive, theoretical and methodological expertise with leading childhood and youth scholars. Childhood and Youth is a growing field of inquiry across the social sciences. Members of the School's Childhood and Youth Research Group operate at the forefront of public policy debates, advising and steering at local and national levels on a range of contemporary issues (e.g. ‘sexualisation’, ‘domestic violence’, ‘adoption’) and drawing on their own world-leading research.

Course aims

This programme is aimed at practitioners, policy makers and postgraduate students who want to develop their knowledge of childhood and youth and consider what it means to conduct research with children and young people at an advanced level. It offers the opportunity to examine leading theories, methodologies and research evidence in order to understand the relationship between the conceptualisation of childhood, methodological approaches to researching with children and young people and the social impact of childhood policies and practices in a variety of social and cultural contexts and across the young life course. Graduates from this programme will have a theoretical, methodological and substantive foundation from which they can critically evaluate how contemporary social structures, institutions, media, policies and practices impact upon children and young people’s everyday lives.

Course structure 

The modules that comprise the programme employ a diverse range of teaching including lectures, seminars, group and individual tutorials, and independent guided study. Students have the opportunity to develop and practice advanced oral and written communication through formative tasks such as presentation of preparatory reading, group problem-based learning tasks, group presentations and substantive assessment including essay, project report and poster presentation.

The programme benefits from being located in an inter-disciplinary environment so that in parts of the course, students will come into contact with staff and students from other subject areas, and in other parts of the course with staff and students in the same substantive area. 

The programme comprises the following modules:

  • Research Design and Methods (with specialist childhood and youth component)
  • Critical Perspectives in Social Science (with specialist childhood and youth component)
  • Contemporary Issues in Childhood and Youth Studies
  • Childhood, Youth and Policy*
  • Research with Children and Young People*
  • Dissertation

* These modules are each taught as four discrete day-long workshops on specialist policy or research issues. Students may choose to substitute one of them for any available MSc modules offered on other programmes in the School if they so wish. 

Please click here for more information on the CPD workshop days



Career Prospects

The programme is suitable for students wishing to work in child and youth-focused research, policy and advocacy roles in the private, public and voluntary sector, both nationally and internationally. It provides a good foundation for those wishing to go on to further training in a variety of professional fields involving work with children and young people, such as education, health and social care, family policy, youth work, justice, international development and charity work. The programme will also be attractive to individuals already working with children and young people in a range of different roles and professions.

View this course on the University's Coursefinder website

Masters Programmes Office, School of Social Sciences

Telephone: +44 (0)29208 70284
Fax: +44 (0)29208 74175