Childhood and Youth: Theory and Practice BA

Education, Childhood and Youth

Key information

Duration:
3 years full time
Typical A-level offer:
ABB-BBB
UCAS code:
L590
Start date:
September 2018

This course engages you in both a rich theoretical understanding of childhood and youth as well as observational experience.

It combines a strong academic foundation and clear professional focus, and gives you experience in a range of services for children.

All of this develops your skills for life-enhancing work in the UK or internationally.

“The tutors are passionate and work hard to make sure everyone is happy, involved and supported.” Yasmin AhmedChildhood and Youth: Theory and Practice BA

Entry requirements

A-level

Typical offer

ABB-BBB

GCSEs

You should also have a broad range of GCSEs (A*-C), including good grades in relevant subjects.

Extended Project Qualification

We take the EPQ into account when considering your application and it can be useful in the summer when your results are released if you have narrowly missed the conditions of your offer. We do not routinely include the EPQ in the conditions of your offer but we sometimes offer alternative conditions that include the EPQ. If you wish to discuss this further please contact Admissions at ug.enquiries@sussex.ac.uk

Other UK qualifications

Access to HE Diploma

Typical offer

Pass the Access to HE Diploma with 45 level 3 credits at Merit or above, including 24 at Distinction.

Subjects

The Access course should be in the humanities or social sciences.

International Baccalaureate

Typical offer

32 points overall from the full IB Diploma.

Additional requirements

If you are planning to use the degree in Childhood and Youth: Theory and Practice as a route into further professional training for teaching or social work in the UK, our MA in Social Work requires formal academic qualifications in both Mathematics and English (equivalent to at least grade C in the GCSE school leaving examination in England) and our PGCE (teaching) programmes require formal academic qualifications in Mathematics, English and Science (again equivalent to at least grade C in the GCSE school leaving examination in England). 

Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma (formerly BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma)

Typical offer

DDM

GCSEs

You should also have a broad range of GCSEs (A*-C), including good grades in relevant subjects.

Scottish Highers

Typical offer

ABBBB

Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced

Typical offer

Grade B and BB in two A-levels.

GCSEs

You should also have a broad range of GCSEs (A*-C), including good grades in relevant subjects.

International baccalaureate

Typical offer

32 points overall from the full IB Diploma.

Additional requirements

If you are planning to use the degree in Childhood and Youth: Theory and Practice as a route into further professional training for teaching or social work in the UK, our MA in Social Work requires formal academic qualifications in both Mathematics and English (equivalent to at least grade C in the GCSE school leaving examination in England) and our PGCE (teaching) programmes require formal academic qualifications in Mathematics, English and Science (again equivalent to at least grade C in the GCSE school leaving examination in England). 

European baccalaureate

Typical offer

Overall result of at least 75%

Other international qualifications

Australia

Typical offer

Relevant state (Year 12) High School Certificate, and over 85% in the ATAR or UAI/TER/ENTER. Or a Queensland OP of 5 or below.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Austria

Typical offer

Reifeprüfung or Matura with an overall result of 2.2 or better for first-year entry. A result of 2.5 or better would be considered for Foundation Year entry.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Belgium

Typical offer

Certificat d'Enseignement Secondaire Supérieur (CESS) or Diploma van Hoger Secundair Onderwijs with a good overall average. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Bulgaria

Typical offer

Diploma za Sredno Obrazovanie with excellent final-year scores (normally 5.5 overall with 6 in key subjects).

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Canada

Typical offer

High School Graduation Diploma. Specific requirements vary between provinces.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

China

Typical offer

We usually do not accept Senior High School Graduation for direct entry to our undergraduate courses.

However, we may consider you if you have studied one year or more of Higher Education in China at a recognised degree awarding institution, or if you are following a recognised International Foundation Year.

If you want to apply for a business-related course which requires an academic ability in Mathematics, you normally also need a grade B in Mathematics from the Huikao or a score of 90 in Mathematics from the Gaokao.

If you have the Senior High School Graduation, you may be eligible to apply for our International Foundation Year. If you successfully complete an International Foundation Year, you can progress on to a relevant undergraduate course at Sussex.

Check which qualifications the International Study Centre accepts for the International Foundation Year.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Croatia

Typical offer

Maturatna Svjedodžba with an overall score of at least 4-5 depending on your degree choice.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Cyprus

Typical offer

Apolytirion of Lykeion with an overall average of at least 18 or 19/20 will be considered for first-year entry.

A score of 15/20 in the Apolytirion would be suitable for Foundation Year entry. Find out more about Foundation Years.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Czech Republic

Typical offer

Maturita with a good overall average.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Denmark

Typical offer

Højere Forberedelseseksamen (HF) or studentereksamen with an overall average of at least 7 on the new grading scale.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Finland

Typical offer

Finnish Ylioppilastutkinto with an overall average result in the final matriculation examinations of at least 5.5.

France

Typical offer

French Baccalauréat with an overall final result of at least 13/20.

Germany

Typical offer

German Abitur with an overall result of 2.2 or better.

Greece

Typical offer

Apolytirion with an overall average of at least 18 or 19/20 will be considered for first-year entry.

A score of 15/20 in the Apolytirion would be suitable for Foundation Year entry. Find out more about Foundation Years.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Hong Kong

Typical offer

Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE) with grades of 5, 4, 4 from three subjects including two electives. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Hungary

Typical offer

Erettsegi/Matura with a good average.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

India

Typical offer

Standard XII results from Central and Metro Boards with an overall average of 75-80%. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Iran

Typical offer

High School Diploma and Pre-University Certificate.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Ireland

Typical offer

Irish Leaving Certificate (Higher Level) at H2 H2 H2 H3 H3.

Israel

Typical offer

Bagrut, with at least 8/10 in at least six subjects, including one five-unit subject.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Italy

Typical offer

Italian Diploma di Maturità or Diploma Pass di Esame di Stato with a Final Diploma mark of at least 78/100.

Japan

Typical offer

Upper Secondary Leaving Certificate is suitable for entry to our Foundation Years. Find out more about Foundation Years.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Latvia

Typical offer

Atestats par Visparejo videjo Izglitibu with very good grades in state exams.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Lithuania

Typical offer

Brandos Atestatas including scores of 80-90% in at least three state examinations (other than English).

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Luxembourg

Typical offer

Diplôme de Fin d'Etudes Secondaires.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Malaysia

Typical offer

Sijil Tinggi Persekolahan Malaysia (STPM). As well as various two or three-year college or polytechnic certificates and diplomas.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Netherlands

Typical offer

Voorereidend Wetenschappelijk Onderwijs (VWO), normally with an average of at least 7.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Nigeria

Typical offer

You are expected to have one of the following:

  • Higher National Diploma
  • One year at a recognised Nigerian University
  • Professional Diploma (Part IV) from the Institute of Medical Laboratory Technology of Nigeria
  • Advanced Diploma

You must also have a score of C6 or above in WAEC/SSC English.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Norway

Typical offer

Norwegian Vitnemal Fra Den Videregaende Skole - Pass with an overall average of at least 4.

Pakistan

Typical offer

Bachelor (Pass) degree in arts, commerce or science.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Poland

Typical offer

Matura with three extended-level written examinations, normally scored within the 7th stanine.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Portugal

Typical offer

Diploma de Ensino Secundario normally with an overall mark of at least 16/20. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Romania

Typical offer

Diploma de Bacalaureat with an overall average of 8.5-9.5 depending on your degree choice.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Singapore

Typical offer

A-levels, as well as certain certificates and diplomas.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Slovakia

Typical offer

Maturitna Skuska or Maturita with honours, normally including scores of 1 in at least three subjects.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Slovenia

Typical offer

Secondary School Leaving Diploma or Matura with at least 23 points overall.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

South Africa

Typical offer

National Senior Certificate with very good grades. 

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Spain

Typical offer

Spanish Título de Bachillerato (LOGSE) with an overall average result of at least 7.5.

Sri Lanka

Typical offer

Sri Lankan A-levels.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Sweden

Typical offer

Fullstandigt Slutbetyg with good grades.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Switzerland

Typical offer

Federal Maturity Certificate.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

Turkey

Typical offer

Devlet Lise Diplomasi or Lise Bitirme is normally only suitable for Foundation Years, but very strong applicants may be considered for first year entry. Find out more about Foundation Years.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

USA

Typical offer

We look at your full profile taking into account everything you are studying. You must have your high school graduation diploma and we will be interested in your Grade 12 GPA. However, we will also want to see evidence of the external tests you have taken. Each application is looked at individually, but you should normally have one or two of the following:

  • APs (where we would expect at least three subject with 4/5 in each)
  • SAT Reasoning Tests (normally with a combined score of 1300) or ACT grades
  • and/or SAT Subject Tests (where generally we expect you to have scores of 600 or higher). 

We would normally require APs or SAT Subject Tests in areas relevant to your chosen degree course.

Please note

Our entry requirements are guidelines and we assess all applications on a case-by-case basis.

My country is not listed

If your qualifications aren’t listed or you have a question about entry requirements, email ug.enquiries@sussex.ac.uk.

English language requirements

IELTS (Academic)

6.5 overall, including at least 6.0 in each component

IELTS scores are valid for two years from the test date. Your score must be valid when you begin your Sussex course. You cannot combine scores from more than one sitting of the test.

If you are applying for degree-level study we can consider your IELTS test from any test centre, but if you require a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) for an English language or pre-sessional English course (not combined with a degree) the test must be taken at a UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI)-approved IELTS test centre.

Find out more about IELTS.

Other English language requirements

Proficiency tests

Cambridge Advanced Certificate in English (CAE)

For tests taken before January 2015: Grade B or above

For tests taken after January 2015: 176 overall, including at least 169 in each skill

We would normally expect the CAE test to have been taken within two years before the start of your course.

You cannot combine scores from more than one sitting of the test. Find out more about Cambridge English: Advanced.

Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE)

For tests taken before January 2015: grade C or above

For tests taken after January 2015: 176 overall, including at least 169 in each skill

We would normally expect the CPE test to have been taken within two years before the start of your course.

You cannot combine scores from more than one sitting of the test. Find out more about Cambridge English: Proficiency.

Pearson (PTE Academic)

62 overall, including at least 56 in all four skills.

PTE (Academic) scores are valid for two years from the test date. Your score must be valid when you begin your Sussex course. You cannot combine scores from more than one sitting of the test. Find out more about Pearson (PTE Academic).

TOEFL (iBT)

88 overall, including at least 20 in Listening, 19 in Reading, 21 in Speaking, 23 in Writing.

TOEFL (iBT) scores are valid for two years from the test date. Your score must be valid when you begin your Sussex course. You cannot combine scores from more than one sitting of the test. Find out more about TOEFL (iBT).

The TOEFL Institution Code for the University of Sussex is 9166.

English language qualifications

AS/A-level (GCE)

Grade C or above in English Language.

Hong Kong Advanced Level Examination (HKALE)/ AS or A Level: grade C or above in Use of English

French Baccalaureat

A score of 12 or above in English.

GCE O-level

Grade C or above in English.

Brunei/Cambridge GCE O-level in English: grades 1-6.

Singapore/Cambridge GCE O-level in English: grades 1-6.

GCSE or IGCSE

Grade C or above in English as a First Language.

Grade B or above in English as a Second Language

German Abitur

A score of 12 or above in English.

Ghana Senior Secondary School Certificate

If awarded before 1993: grades 1-6 in English language.

If awarded between 1993 and 2005: grades A-D in English language.

Hong Kong Diploma of Secondary Education (HKDSE)

 Level 4, including at least 3 in each component in English Language.

Indian School Certificate (Standard XII)

The Indian School Certificate is accepted at the grades below when awarded by the following examination boards:

Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) – English Core only: 70%

Council for Indian School Certificate Examinations (CISCE) - English: 70% 

International Baccalaureate Diploma (IB)

English A or English B at grade 5 or above.

Malaysian Certificate of Education (SPM) 119/GCE O-level

If taken before the end of 2008: grades 1-5 in English Language.

If taken from 2009 onwards: grade C or above in English Language.

The qualification must be jointly awarded by the University of Cambridge Local Examinations Syndicate (UCLES).

West African Senior School Certificate

Grades 1-6 in English language when awarded by the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) or the National Examinations Council (NECO).

Country exceptions

Select to see the list of exempt English-speaking countries

If you are a national of one of the countries below, or if you have recently completed a qualification equivalent to a UK Bachelors degree or higher in one of these countries, you will normally meet our English requirements. Note that qualifications obtained by distance learning or awarded by studying outside these countries cannot be accepted for English language purposes.

You will normally be expected to have completed the qualification within two years before starting your course at Sussex. If the qualification was obtained earlier than this we would expect you to be able to demonstrate that you have maintained a good level of English, for example by living in an English-speaking country or working in an occupation that required you to use English regularly and to a high level.

Please note that this list is determined by the UK’s Home Office, not by the University of Sussex.

List of exempt countries

  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Australia
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belize
  • Canada**
  • Dominica
  • Grenada
  • Guyana
  • Ireland
  • Jamaica
  • New Zealand
  • St Kitts and Nevis
  • St Lucia
  • St Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • United Kingdom
  • USA

** Canada: you must be a national of Canada; other nationals not on this list who have a degree from a Canadian institution will not normally be exempt from needing to provide evidence of English.

Admissions information for applicants

Disclosure and barring service checkYes
Transfers into Year 2

Yes. Find out more about transferring into Year 2 of this course. We don’t accept transfers into the third or final year.

If your qualifications aren’t listed or you have a question about entry requirements, email ug.enquiries@sussex.ac.uk.

Why choose this course?

  • Learn from experts who are advising governments nationally and internationally, shaping policy and improving professional practice.
  • Gain knowledge, understanding and skills through varied professional placements in different age phases and contexts.
  • Sussex is a research-intensive university that has strong partnerships with local providers in primary and special education and youth services, ensuring a range of skills development for your career.

Course information

How will I study?

You attend weekly lectures, workshops and small-group tutorials, supported by one-to-one meetings with an academic adviser. There is a mixture of assessment modes, including essays and exams, but also learning diaries, posters and group presentations.

You are introduced to key theories and debates in childhood and youth, education, and child psychology, such as social pedagogy.

You also choose from a variety of options, specialising in specific areas of interest.

Modules

These are the modules running in the academic year 2017. Modules running in 2018 may be subject to change.

Core modules


Customise your course

At Sussex, you can choose to customise your course to build the sort of degree that will give you the knowledge, skills and experience that could take you in any direction you choose.

Explore subjects different to your course – electives and pathways allow you to complement your main subject. Find out what opportunities your course offers

How will I study?

You build on the theoretical foundations established in Year 1. There’s a greater focus on the application of theory to policy and practice, as well as on the nature of professional practice itself.

You’re introduced to key skills in research, allowing you to investigate problems and issues in professional practice settings.

You also choose from a variety of options, with the chance to specialise in specific areas of interest.

Modules

These are the modules running in the academic year 2017. Modules running in 2018 may be subject to change.

Core modules


Customise your course

At Sussex, you can choose to customise your course to build the sort of degree that will give you the knowledge, skills and experience that could take you in any direction you choose.

Explore subjects different to your course – electives and pathways allow you to complement your main subject. Find out what opportunities your course offers

Gain programming skills and apply them to areas such as digital media, business and interactive design. Find out about our Year in Computing

Study abroad (optional)

Apply to study abroad – you’ll develop an international perspective and gain an edge when it comes to your career. Find out where your course could take you

Observational placements

Observational placements help you to link theory and practice, and give you the opportunity to link your dissertation to a professional setting.

Students talk about the benefits of placements, where you put learning into practice

“We spend five days each year on a placement, which is a great opportunity to apply what we’ve learnt on the course.” Yasmin AhmedChildhood and Youth: Theory and Practice BA

Please note

If you’re receiving – or applying for – USA federal Direct Loan funds, you can’t transfer to the version of this program with an optional study abroad period in any country or optional placement in the USA. Find out more about American Student Loans and Federal Student Aid

How will I study?

You work at an advanced level and build on your prior theoretical learning and your experiences on placement. You combine theory and practice with opportunities for further specialisation.

You learn in seminar groups rather than big lectures. Staff foster an atmosphere of discussion and debate based on key weekly readings.

Your learning culminates in the production of a dissertation.

Modules

These are the modules running in the academic year 2017. Modules running in 2018 may be subject to change.

Core modules

My studies of ‘social pedagogy’, a model of work with children and young people, is attracting interest in the UK because of its key role in other European countries.”Professor Janet Boddy
Professor of Child, Youth and Family Studies

Fees

UK/EU students:
Fees are not yet set for entry in the academic year 2018. The University intends to set fees at the maximum permitted by the UK Government (subject to continued satisfaction of the Teaching Excellence Framework). For the academic year 2017, fees were £9,250 per year.

The UK Government has confirmed that if you’re an EU student applying for entry in September 2018, you’ll pay the same fee rate as UK students for the duration of your course, even if the UK leaves the EU before the end of your course. You’ll also continue to have access to student loans and grants. Find out more on the UK Government website

Channel Islands and Isle of Man students:
The University aligns fees for Channel Islands and Isle of Man students with fees for UK/EU students. These fees are not yet set for entry in the academic year 2018. We intend to set fees at the maximum permitted by the UK Government (subject to continued satisfaction of the Teaching Excellence Framework). For the academic year 2017, fees were £9,250 per year.
International students:
£15,500 per year
Study abroad:
Find out about grants and funding, tuition fees and insurance costs for studying abroad
Placement:
Find out about tuition fees for placements

Note that your fees may be subject to an increase on an annual basis.

Find out about typical living costs for studying at Sussex

Scholarships

Our focus is personal development and social mobility. To help you meet your ambitions to study at Sussex, we deliver one of the most generous scholarship programmes of any UK university.

Careers

Graduate destinations

Recent Department of Education graduates have found jobs as:

  • targeted youth support worker, East Sussex County Council
  • senior residential worker, Compass Children’s Homes
  • learning support assistant, Truro College.

(Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education Survey 2015)

Your future career

This course and our professional focus prepare you for careers in a range of exciting employment and educational opportunities including:

  • children’s services and early years practitioner
  • family or residential support worker
  • therapist
  • inclusion officer
  • youth, charitable or probation work
  • the Civil Service.

Together with local employers and services across the University, we pay careful attention to your employment needs. We organise specially tailored careers events.

Working while you study

Our Careers and Employability Centre can help you find part-time work while you study. Find out more about career development and part-time work

Childhood, Youth & Transition: Developing Critical Approaches

  • 30 credits
  • Autumn Teaching, Year 1

Explore children and young people's development from an interdisciplinary perspective.

The module takes a holistic and ecological view of developmental trajectories in the context of social relationships to give you an overview of children and young people's development and the role that relationships with primary carers, significant others, family members and friends play in that development.

You reflect on key concepts in child and youth development, such as attachment, transition (with associated gains, losses, change and risks), identity, risk and resilience. Locating the child in the context of social and societal relationships, you examine key aspects of child development, and theoretical approaches to understanding childhood.

You explore the roles of:

  • attunement, self-regulation and attachment in emotional and social development
  • environmental and social factors in the development of speech, language and literacy
  • play in the development of gender and ethnic identities and moral reasoning
  • peer and family relationships and the influence of wider social institutions in the development of young identities.

You also study:

  • the problematisation of adolescence and perspectives on sexual development, risk, crisis and deviance
  • major transitions, democratic participation and civic engagement
  • the governance of children and young people's lives and spaces.

In addition you explore the impact of inequality on children and young people's development across differences such as class, race, gender, sexuality and age, Children's experiences and points of view of growing up in different social and cultural contexts will also be addressed.

Contemporary Debates 1: Childhood and Society

  • 15 credits
  • Autumn Teaching, Year 2

Explore experiences and knowledge of childhood and youth theory, policy and practice at a historical, social and cultural interface, and discover ways in which our experiences and knowledge of childhood change over time.

You study historical views of children and young people and of childhood. This includes a historical overview of the 'invention' of childhood, its representation in art and literature in the UK and globally, and its emergence as a field of academic study.

You explore developing constructions of childhood, in historical perspective and consider how such theories have historically and contemporaneously influenced and shaped the development of childhood and youth policy and practice and so have shaped children's lives. Examples of policy and practice will be given from education, health and child welfare. 

You also analyse the emergence of grand theories of childhood (psychodynamic, social learning theories, constructivist theories, and socio-cultural theories) to consider how these theories are themselves socially constructed and historically located. 

 

Children's Rights and Legal Frameworks

  • 15 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 1

This module aims to provide a foundation in key legal and policy frameworks affecting work with children and young people in a broad range of contexts. The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child will be used to structure the module giving a strong focus on the global reach of children's rights and legal frameworks. Example of the construction and consequences of children's rights and legal frameworks will be drawn from national (UK) and international contexts. These will be considered from historical, cultural, political and social perspectives. This module is complemented by the course on Inter-professional Practice in Year 2 which explores these issues at practice level.

European Perspectives: Social Pedagogy and Work with Children and Young People

  • 30 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 2

Gian an introduction to social pedagogy: a core theoretical and professional discipline for work with children and young people in many European countries. Social pedagogy can be understood as the theoretical discipline concerned with upbringing, or with education in the broadest sense of that word.

You learn about:

  • social pedagogy, addressing current theoretical understandings and debates
  • the application of social pedagogic theory and principles to policy and work with children, young people and families across the sector of children's services
  • the relevance of social pedagogy to practice in settings including schools, youth services, early years and out of school provision.

Readings include writings on social pedagogic theory and UK-focused material to encourage you to identify links between social pedagogy and other complementary approaches to work with children.

Module content will include:

  • key concepts and principles, and their application to work with children and young people
  • the diversity of social pedagogy – cross-national variations in theory and approaches
  • social pedagogy in the UK: commonalities and differences with English language approaches to work with children
  • the professional role of the pedagogue within children's services
  • social pedagogy in practice: supporting children's learning and their education (in the broadest sense of the word)
  • social pedagogy in policy for children and families
  • current debates and future directions.

Contemporary Debates 2: Connecting Theory and Practice

  • 15 credits
  • Autumn Teaching, Year 4

Study connections and disjunctures between theories, policies and practice in relation to work with children, young people and families.

You will learn about:

  • the ways in which theoretical constructions of childhood and child development have informed policy and practice across children's services
  • the impact of key theoretical and methodological approaches on the design and development of policy and services
  • the relative dominance of different approaches. 

You will explore psychodynamic, social learning, constructivist, and socio-cultural theories as part of this module, and look at the interface between different theoretical approaches and understandings of evidence-based policy and practice in relation to children, young people and families.

Examples from a UK and a cross-national perspective, and from education, health and child welfare, are used to help you analyse the ways in which the inter-relationship between theory, policy and practice is itself socially constructed and historically located.

Perspectives on Practice;Working with Children, Young People and Families

  • 30 credits
  • Autumn Teaching, Year 3

In this module, you gain the professional skills to work with children and young people. 

You learn the key skills for practice, including: 

  • communication, dialogue and listening
  • working with groups, and managing group dynamics
  • creative work with children, young people and families, including visual and digital arts, music and drama, and an introduction to Forest School theory and methods
  • observation in mainstream educational contexts
  • understanding assessment and feedback.

You also look at:

  • observation and assessment in children's social care
  • approaches to communication and practice in working with children with special educational needs
  • therapeutic approaches to work with children and young people, including counselling and play therapy.

This module includes preparation for your observational placement in education, early years, youth work, or the play service.

Inter-professional Practice

  • 15 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 3

The module aims to develop knowledge of partnership and inter-professional working, and to sensitise you to the opportunites and challenges offered by collaborative working. Drawing on theory, research and practice in national (UK) and international contexts, the module aims to develop your conceptual thinking on the topics of interdisciplinary working with children and young people, at the same time as developing their practical skills in collaborative group work.

The module is underpinned by the idea that the 'messy interconnectedness' of welfare matters calls for multi-professional and multi-agency working. The rights framework provided by the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child will be used to frame the approach to the module content. Detailed reference will be made to cases of inter-professional working in the UK and internationally, and the contexts that enable and constrain succesful partnership working will be considered.

This module builds upon the foundations of the first-year course Rights and Legal Frameworks, through greater emphasis on practice and implementation of child- and youth-focused services. It locates partnership and inter-professional working in an institutional landscape that requires the balancing of rights, risks, and resilience in the practice of promoting children and young people's wellbeing.

Examples of areas in which partnership and inter-professional working will be explored include:

  • introduction to roles and group/team dynamics in interdisciplinary contexts
  • legal and policy frameworks for interagency working (eg introduction of the Common Assessment Framework in the UK)
  • collaborative working in complex support systems (eg Looked After Children, children in residential care, pupils with Statements of Special Educational Needs, Pupil Referral Units)
  • collaborative working in mixed ecologies of care (eg statutory services, charity and voluntary sector support for 'vulnerable' children and young people)
  • child protection, with examples from the UK, Europe and from the field of international development
  • the role of language in inter-professional contexts (eg across health, education, and social work)
  • inter-professional working with disabled children and with children in the youth justice system. 

The assessment will mirror the dual emphasis of the module in developing your understanding of collaborative working alongside your collaboration skills. As such, the assessment will consist of a group presentation (35% weighting) and 2,000-word report on collaborative working (65% weighting). You will be asked to choose a collaborative working context on which to present, and your short report will reflect on your collaborative practice, using literature where relevant to support your arguments.

Teaching and learning will be delivered through a combination of weekly lectures and seminars and a tutorial incorporating facilitated group work.

Introduction to Research Methods

  • 30 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 4

This module introduces you to the different ways in which research with children and young people can be conducted, and to the key theoretical and methodological debates about research with children and young people. It provides insights in to different methodologies, methods and applications of research, gives the opportunity to explore a specific research paper in detail, and prepares you for the dissertation in Year 3.

The module content will include:

  • theories of knowledge and dominant approaches to research with children and young people, including an introduction to qualitative and quantitative methodologies and how these are used
  • literature reviews - including how to do an electronic search and how to summarise key debates and draw conclusions
  • ethical concerns relating to research with children and young people, and the implications for research design
  • practitioner and insider research, including action research, case study and evidence-based practice
  • exploration of the ways in which published research is used by policy makers and practitioners to develop practice
  • consideration of power relations as a factor affecting research, including reference to critical theory and theories of 'capital'; and
  • an introduction to the academic skills needed to identify an article for review and to critique it from both a methodological and a substantive perspective.

Teaching methods will include a combination of weekly lectures and seminars, group tutorials and individual tutorials. Much of the course will be taught alongside the BA in Social Work. Individual tutorials will provide support with the identification of an appropriate focus for the essay and formative feedback on a draft prior to submission.

Assessment will have two components:

  1. A 2000 word essay, providing an in depth critique of a published article exploring an aspect of work with children and young people.
  2. A 1000 word outline proposal for the Year 3 dissertation, considering research methodology and design issues related to working with particular groups of children or in particular services, along with the potential ethics issues involved. This proposal will prepare you for your dissertation, and enable timely planning for allocation of supervisors, negotiation of access to sites for research and ethics review, whilst allowing you flexibility in the development of the focus of your research as you move into Year 3.

Contemporary Debates 3: Future Directions

  • 15 credits
  • Autumn Teaching, Year 3

The Debates modules run in Teaching Block 1 of each year and provide the programme with overall conceptual coherence and progression. The aim of the three modules is to locate experiences and knowledge of childhood and youth theory, policy and practice at a historical, social and cultural interface. The modules will expose students to the ways in which our experiences and knowledge of childhood change over time.

This final of the three Debates runs in Year 3 Block 1.

This third and final of three Debates focuses on the current state of the art in terms of knowledge and experience of childhood and youth studies, whilst looking to the future to considering developing agendas in theory, policy and professional practice. The module will consolidate learning from the two previous linked Debates modules, and will build on other theoretical, applied and methodological content in preceding years. More specifically, the module will examine the elements of grand theories and modern theories that hold currency or remain influential today, whilst introducing you to current trends in research on childhood including neuroscientific, post-modern and pragmatic traditions. You will be encouraged to problematise current trends in the same way they have problematised historical trends, to reflect on how the current 'state of the art' can be understood within a social, cultural and historical context. Drawing on relevant material from other modules in the BA (and encouraging you to draw on material covered in elective modules), this final module will actively engage with the inter-disciplinarity of both knowledge and experience of childhood and youth. The module will highlight debates around the social construction and politics of knowledge (e.g. evidence-based practice) and the influence of children's rights on shaping understanding and experience of childhood and youth. As with previous modules, examples will be given of the ways in which contemporary trends are influencing and shaping childhood and youth policy and practice and children's experiences nationally and internationally.

Teaching strategy will consist of an hour lecture followed by a two-hour seminar. You will also receive group tutorials to discuss their progress in understanding the key concepts and to gain further support in writing the assignment.

Summative assessment for the module will be based on a short Concept Note (1500 words), with a focus of your choice addressing a topic covered in the module. Formative feedback will be provided on one draft of the concept note and through discussion in group tutorials.

Contexts of Childhood 1: Parents and Families

  • 15 credits
  • Autumn Teaching, Year 3

This module will be taught in Year 3 Block 1.

The module aims to build and extend knowledge of children and young people's lives in the context of their families, and draws together a number of themes from modules in previous years.

The module continues with an holistic and ecological view of children and young people and explores the micro-and meso-systems of children and young people's development and experiences. A key focus on the module will be the interactions and relationships between children and young people and their immediate familial and care environments. The module will focus on the risks and resilience of these contexts and the role that families and other carers can play in promoting resilience and well-being. Concepts of family and family practices, parenting, care, social and cultural capital will be explored.

Locating childhood and youth in a family and care context, the module will cover a range of topics including the concept of 'family' and family diversity; siblings; parenting; extended families; non-parental child-care; play, leisure and family life; social inequalities; diversity; disadvantaged families. Examples will be given from cross-cultural research and links will be made to current developments in policy and practice for/with children and young people and their families.

The summative assessment will be an individual poster presentation.

Contexts of Childhood 2: Institutions, Communities, and Societies

  • 30 credits
  • Autumn Teaching, Year 3

The module aims to build and extend knowledge of children and young people's lives in the context of the institutions with which they come into contact, in their communities and in society at large.

The module will first examine the significance of ethos of modernity as a way of thinking that has been central in the development of our societies, communities and institutions, and the different ways this unfolded in the Global North and Global South. It will explore the role of institutions such as schooling, religion, medicine, the media and systems of government in shaping children’s and young people’s lives and experiences.

In addition to critically examining how we understand the concepts of communities, institutions and societies, the module will address related concepts such as rights, responsibilities, citizenship and participation, different forms of capital, social inequalities and stratification, risk and resilience.

Locating childhood and youth in a broader societal and cultural context, the module will address topics such as formal and informal learning, inclusion/exclusion from education and other social arenas, children and youth’s participation in decision-making, children and youth and the media, children and youth and the roles of professionals in the lives of children and youth.

Throughout the module we will draw on in-depth research within particular social contexts in the Global North and Global South.

Dissertation

  • 30 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 3

This module focuses on guided research enquiry into a topic of your choice. It brings together research and professional practice by providing you with an opportunity to undertake empirical research or a desk-based study in an area relevant to work with children and young people.

Individual and group tutorials will provide: support with the identification of a focus for the dissertation, an appropriate research design and research questions; advice on ethics review; formative feedback on one proposal plan and and one dissertation draft prior to submission.

The module draws on knowledge of research processes gained earlier in the course, specifically in the Research Methods course taught in Year 2.

The module content will include:

How to conduct a small-scale research study - either desk-based or empirical - in an area relating to work with children, young people or families.
Ethics issues relating to research with children and young people, including how to obtain ethics approval for an empirical project.
Issues relating to desk-based studies and use of secondary data.
Approaches to reviewing the literature.
How to develop a research design and to frame research questions.
Input on specific data collection methods such as interviewing, observation and focus groups.
Researcher positionality.
Methods of data analysis, including workshops to introduce the use of ICT for this purpose.
Input relating to the academic skills necessary to communicate and present research findings in an accessible and appropriate format.

Teaching methods will include a combination of weekly lectures and seminars, workshops on data analysis requiring ICT facilities and group and individual tutorials.

Some lectures, seminars and workshops will involve joint learning with the BA in Social Work. The majority of the work will be undertaken through private study but there will also be opportunities for peer presentation to support the initial development of the project focus and design.

Health and Wellbeing

  • 30 credits
  • Spring Teaching, Year 3

This module aims to provide you with knowledge and understanding of a range of factors relating to children and young people's health and well-being. It will begin by addressing key areas of health of particular relevance to work with children and young people, whilst critically examining underpinning theoretical constructions of health and of health behaviour. Throughout, the module will incorporate discussion of key facets of health and well-being in childhood with consideration of corresponding health problems (e.g. in linking discussion of emotional health and of emotional and behavioural problems). Discussion of approaches to work with children and young people's health will be embedded throughout the module, both in relation to health education and health promotion, and in supporting and working with children and young people with additional needs. Through this approach, the module will build on aspects of theory and debate covered in earlier parts of the module, including the 'Contemporary Debates' modules, and modules relating to inter-professional practice and work with children, young people and families.

The module involves regular three hour sessions including  both lecture and seminar discussion within each session. You will also take part in two group tutorials, to support your preparation for the assessment.

Assessment will be a three hour Unseen Examination which accounts for 100% of the module grade. You will be required to select and answer short essay questions. Seminars and tutorials will be used to prepare students for the examination, for example with practice exam questions and peer assessment.

The module content will include:

(a) Critical concepts in health;

  • well-being and happiness
  • inequalities in health
  • global perspectives

(b) Diet and health;

  • perspectives on food and family
  • childhood obesity

(c) Understanding health risks for children and young people;

  • concepts of vulnerability
  • risk and play
  • sexual health
  • drug and alcohol use

(d) Health and happiness;

  • emotional health and emotional and behavioural difficulties
  • mental health in childhood and adolescence

(e) Complex needs and disability;

  • concepts of disability
  • identification and assessment of special and complex needs
  • children with chronic illness
  • children as carers

The module will be assessed formatively by student presentations and summatively by a Long Term Paper, and so teaching will be delivered by a combination of weekly lectures and seminars, with the addition of two group tutorials to monitor progress and provide support with development of the course assigment.

All candidates offered a place on the course will be required to satisfactorily complete an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check (formerly known as a CRB check), including a check of all cautions and warnings as well as convictions, before their place on the course is confirmed.

Return to top of page