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Childhood Studies and Early Years BA (Hons) 2015/16 Modules

Level of Study: Undergraduate | Mode of Study: 2 years | Location: Kaplan | Start: June/July

About this course | module information

Childhood and Early Years Studies BA (Hons) offers a unique and exciting opportunity to develop your knowledge, insight and understanding of a range of issues relating to childhood, children, young people and society.

Throughout this Childhood and Early Years course you will be encouraged to ask the question ‘what is childhood?’ and to consider the many different perspectives from which childhood can be viewed. You will also look back historically to help understand how childhood, children and young people have been conceptualised over time, examining critical moments and pioneers of change. You will reflect upon current developments in childhood provision, policy and practice both nationally and internationally.

The Childhood and Early Years Studies degree encourages you to draw upon your own experiences in engaging with contemporary issues such as education, war, poverty, health, disability and children’s rights through the analysis and examination of research, children’s literature, historical documents, film, TV and other mediums.

Child development is a strong theme within the programme whereby you will explore children’s development in the context of their families, communities and wider society with a focus on the earliest years of a child’s life. You will consider how early experiences can influence a child’s development and their later life experiences, including the role of attachment, early interaction and communication in helping young children to ‘make meaning’ from their experiences.

This Childhood and Early Years course explores issues involved in researching with children and young people and considers the challenges of ‘listening to the voice’ of the child, through an exploration of the theory and practice of effective engagement with them. You will build a set of research skills that help you both understand critically the work of others and how to undertake your own research in an area of genuine interest to you.

The module information housed below is solely intended for our collaborative ventures overseas programmes. This programme has been developed for collaboration between Northumbria University Newcastle and our Partner institutions. The programme will have been delivered for one full academic year prior to delivery overseas and therefore there may be slight variations between modules delivered in the UK to those delivered concurrently overseas. The modules may be contextualised to suit the overseas market however the content will be comparable to the UK delivery.

Module Information

PP0518 | Young People and Society


This module aims to explore the social, political, economic and cultural factors which have influenced and continue to influence the lives of children and young people in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. A key theme will be the consideration of how youth is conceptualised in current society and whether these concepts are largely positive or negative. The origins of such concepts will be explored through the examination of relevant literature and research. Issues of class, ethnicity, gender, orientation and inequality will be a particular focus.

Through a range of delivery methods, including lectures, seminars and group tutorials, students will be encouraged to consider key social, political, economic and cultural themes which are influencing the 'conceptualisation of youth' in society.
Both formal and informal positive feedback will be provided to assist students to develop confidence in their skills of research and analysis and to develop their informed thinking on the topics under consideration.


Bennett, A. (2000) Popular Music and Youth Culture: Music, identity and place. Basingstoke: Macmillan. 

Buckingham, D. (2004) Young people, sex and the media: the facts of life? Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Cohen, S. (2002) Folk Devils and Moral Panics: The creation of Mods and Rockers. 3rd edn. London: Routledge.

Fionda, J. (2005) Devils and Angels: Youth Policy and Crime. Oxford: Hart. 

Gauntlett, D. (2005) Moving Experiences: Media Effects and Beyond. 2nd. edn. Eastleigh: John Libbey & Co Ltd.

Gauntlett, D. (2008) Media, gender and identity. 2nd edn. New York: Routledge.

Goldson, B. Muncie, J. (2006) Youth Crime and Justice. London: Sage.

Jones, P. (2009) Rethinking Childhood: Attitudes in Contemporary Society. London: Continuum

Kassem,D., Murphy, L. and Taylor, E. (eds.) (2010) Key issues in childhood and youth studies London : Routledge, 2010. (e-book)

Pantazis, C. Gordon, D. Levitas, R. (2006) Poverty and Social Exclusion in Britain: The Millennium Survey. Bristol: Policy.

Harvey, D (2005) A Brief History of Neo-liberalism. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

MacDonald, R. (2008) 'Disconnected Youth? Social Exclusion, the underclass and economic marginality' Social work and Society, vol, .6 no,2. No page numbers. Socwork [Online]. Available at:

MacDonald, R. Marsh, J. (2005) Disconnected Youth? Growing up in Britain's poor neighbourhoods. Basingstoke: Palgrave.

Scraton, P. (ed.) (2004) Childhood in Crisis? London: Routledge.

Talbot, M. Alia,V. (2007) Media Discourse: Representation and Interaction. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Wright Mills, C (1959) The Sociological Imagination. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

British Journal of Sociology
Critical Social Policy
Journal of Popular Culture
Journal of Youth Studies
Criminology and Criminal Justice
Work, Employment and Society


Joseph Rowntree Foundation Children's Workforce Development Council


Discourses in self and cultural representation: Later Childhood

'From subcultures to youth cultures; academic discourses, history, consumption and rebellion'.
Youth Subcultures: issues of history, consumption and rebellion
The concept of social exclusion
The demonisation of youth within media representations 
New networks and youth activism
Young people and role models: 'for good or ill'

'Keeping them younger for longer'
The changing landscape of economic life: A North East Case Study

The impact of neo-liberal, moralising and populist politics on the lives of young people

Challenging myths and stereotypes

Developing the skills of debate 


This module will seek to explore the lives of young people through the consideration of a number of issues. Firstly students will critically analyse the proposition that there is a 'discourse of difference' in UK society when considering young people. i.e. are young people are considered as 'other'. To further develop this theme, the questions of how youth is conceptualised within society and what ways these concepts are considered negative or positive will be examined. A detailed exploration of key cultural, social, political and economic factors will support the informed discussion of these questions.
A particular focus of the module will be issues of class, ethnicity, gender, orientation and inequality in the context of youth cultures and sub cultures.


On successful completion of this module students should have:

* A sound understanding of the key factors within the social world which impinge upon the lives of young people at the start of 21st century
* The ability to illustrate current representations of young people within media and culture, and examine the impact these can have on the lives of young people.
* The skills and understandings to recognise, distinguish between, debate and analyse a range of discourses on youth.
* A personal recognition of the student's potential to be an active agent in challenging socio-cultural stereotypes.



The following approaches will be used:

* Lectures
* Seminars: to include on going formative assessment with feedback. In this way 'small stakes' assessment will be used to ensure all students receive feedback on their progress as they travel through the module. 
* Small group tutorials/discussion groups to support debate element of the module
* Peer group learning activities: on going research to support student participation in the learning process using guided learning activities.


a Summative assessment and rationale for tasks

Assignment chosen from a selection of topics and using a variety of research approaches:
* Analysis of the impact of social, economic and cultural factors upon the lives of young people within the present and recent past and the subsequent conceptualisation of those lives by society.
* Analysis of recent research on a specific topic related to young people, e.g. Youth Employment, Youth Justice, Young People in the Care System.
* Analysis of the impact of social economic and the cultural factors on the lives of young people within a specific region of the United Kingdom.
* Analysis and evaluation of media representations of young people.

b. Additional formative assessment - detail of process and rationale
Participation in a series of debates on key issues relating to young people. Topics linked to course content and requiring students to read around the topics as they arise. Indicative reading to be provided with a particular focus on academic journals. Students are required to adopt a stand point and research and argue the point of view.

c. Indication of how students will get feedback and how this will support their learning

Students will receive feedback via:
Written comments on assessed work, highlighting strengths and weaknesses and indicating pathways to the further development of knowledge and skills. Areas of concern will be linked to positive advice on how to address issues. 

Informal feedback throughout the module via lectures, seminars and group tutorials. Emphasis will be on supporting students to develop confidence in their own abilities to carry out the assigned research and delivery tasks. Levels of support provided will aim to be flexible and responsive to the needs of the students as they progress through the module.

Opportunities for peer support and feedback will also be fully utilised through group activities. With student agreement the e-learning portal will be utilised to share relevant materials generated by seminar discussions.

PP0536 | Global Perspectives of Childhood and Youth


This module will provide students with an opportunity to investigate current debates about childhood and youth within a global context; the lived experiences of children and young people in different cultural and social settings, and the different factors which link or differentiate disparate groups of children and young people. Children and young people experience a range of life events which contribute to the way they see the world. The module will adopt a thematic approach to the exploration of issues such as, war, work, health, and poverty. Students will also explore different research approaches commonly used with children and young people. Students will therefore have opportunity to explore how knowledge is created, debated and analysed.

Students will be taught using a variety of methods such as Lectures, seminars, directed tasks, and e-learning methods. 

Students will complete a formative task mid-way through the semester, with a summative essay at the end. 


Boyden,J; Bourdillon, MFC. (2012)Childhood poverty: multidisciplinary approach, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan.

Dr Cook, DT; Dr Wall, J. (2011) Children and Armed Conflict: Cross-disciplinary Investigations, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan.

Hannum,E and Fuller,B. (2006) Children's lives and schooling across societies, London, Elsevier.

Holland,P. (2003) We don't play with guns here: war, weapon, and superhero play in the early years, Open University Press, Maidenhead.

International Labor Office, (2009)Gender equality at the heart of decent work: International Labour Conference, 98thSession, 2009, Report VI.

Jones,N; Sumner,A. (2011) Child poverty, evidence and policy: mainstreaming children in international development, Geneva, ILO.

Montgomery,H. (2013) Local childhoods, global issues, Bristol, Policy Press.

Sargeant,J; Harcourt,D (2012) Doing ethical research with children, Maidenhead, Open University Press.

Pole,CJ; Bolton,A; Mizen,P. ( 2001) Hidden hands: international perspectives on children's work and labour, Routledge Falmer, London.

Sealy,M; Southbank Centre.(2008) Documenting Disposable people: contemporary global slavery, London, Hayward.

Tisdall,KM ; Davis,JM; Gallagher,M.(2009) Researching with children and young people: research design, methods and analysis, London, Sage.

van den Anker,C.(2004) The Political economy of new slavery, Basingstoke, Palgrave Macmillan.

Wells,K. (2009) Childhood in a global perspective, Cambridge, Polity.

Key Journals: 
Children and Society - (2008) Special issue: Child Slavery Worldwide
Children and Society - (2010) Special issue: Child poverty through the life course: International Perspectives 
Childcare, Health and Development, 
The Journal of Development Studies 
Journal of Poverty and Social Justice



* The geography of time and space: countries, continents and cultures .
* The introduction to, and exploration of, the module themes.
* Identification of the interrelationships between the module themes. 
* The construction of 'childhood' and 'youth' within the module themes.
* Globalisation and 'childhood'.
* Cultural Relativism and 'childhood'.
* Cultural worlds of children and young people.
* Rites of Passage' as a mark of transition across different countries and cultures.
* Researching with children and young people.


This module aims to furnish students with a range of theoretical perspectives relevant to the global experiences children and young people across countries and cultures. Students will enhance their knowledge through exploration of ethnographic studies of children and young people's experiences of issues such as war; poverty; and work. Students will analyse the impact of social; political and cultural difference on concepts of childhood and youth. Students will also gain a theoretical overview of key skills in data collection and analysis related to research with children and young people.


In completing this module students will be able to:

* Demonstrate their understanding of key debates and dilemmas associated with the concept of 'global childhood'.

*Debate how diverse cultural, social and political circumstances shape concepts of childhood and youth.

* Compare and contrast the experiences of different groups of children and young people within and between geographic boundaries.

* Appraise the impact of gender; ethnicity; social class/caste; sexuality and dis/ability on the lived experiences of children and young people.

* Identify the different methodologies and methods used in undertaking research with children and young people.



The following strategies will be used:

* lectures
* Seminars
* Group work
* Directed learning
* IT in learning and formal assessment
* Peer feedback
* Assessment for learning


a Summative assessment and rationale for tasks

The summative task will be a written assignment of 3000 words. Students will be offered a choice of titles, for example:

Is there a global form of childhood? Debate with reference to the themes and issues explored in this module, and illustrate your answer with examples from at least TWO countries.

Using an ethnographic study of children or young people in a non-UK country, analyse and discuss the cultural, social and political circumstances outlined in the study, and how these contribute to constructions of 'childhood'.

Mid -way through the module students will have a structured formative task that will enable them draw upon their analysis of relevant literature, and rehearse their understandings of the perspectives of children and young people related to module themes they have enjoyed. They will also be asked to outline different theoretical perspectives that have enhanced their understanding. Learning from this task or tasks will be transferable to the summative assignment. 

Examples: Poster presentations in groups; 500 word proposal for the assignment with students identifying what specific aspects they would like feedback on; peer review of previous student work

PP0520 | Early Years in Context 'B'


This module will explore a range of approaches to early years services drawing on examples from the UK and abroad. Students will carry out fieldwork in an early years setting observing and reflecting on current practice, and exploring opportunities for development and service improvement.
Assessment will be through a range of tasks linked to the observational fieldwork experience (formative) in preparation for the summative assessment of a 3000 word report based on students' observations in the setting.


Roberts-Holmes, G. (2005) Doing Your Early Years Research Project. London: Paul Chapman Publishing

Department for Children, Schools and Families. (2008) The Early Years Foundation Stage, Statutory Framework and Guidance. London: DCSF

Edwards, C., Gandini, L. and Forman, G. (1995) The Hundred Languages of Children: the Reggio Emilia Approach to Early Childhood Education. USA: Abtex Publishing

Isaacs, B. (2007) Bringing the Montessori approach to your early years practice. London: Routledge

Montessori, M. (Translated and edited by Barbara Barclay Carter) (1983),The secret of Childhood. London: Sangam

Penn, H. (1997) Comparing nurseries: staff and children in Italy, Spain and the UK. London: Paul Chapman

Pugh, G. (2001) (ed) Contemporary Issues in the Early Years: working collaboratively for children. 3rd edn. London: Paul Chapman Publishing

Waller, T (ed) (2005) An Introduction to Early Childhood: A Multi- disciplinary Approach. London: Paul Chapman Press

Electronic books:
Holt, N. (2007) Bringing the High Scope Approach to Your Early Years Practice (Taylor and Francis Group). My ilibrary (online). Available at

Jones, C. (2004) Supporting Inclusion In The Early Years. My ilibrary (online). Available at

Nicol, J. (2007) Bringing the Steiner Waldorf Approach to Your Early Years Practice. My ilibrary (online). Available at

Nurse, D. (Ed) (2007) The New Early Years Professional: Dilemmas And Debates. My ilibrary (online). Available at

Smidt, S. (2007) A Guide To Early Years Practice. My ilibrary (online). Available at

Thornton, L. and Brunton, P. (2007) Bringing the Reggio Approach to Your Early Years Practice. My ilibrary (online). Available at

Early Years- an international journal of research and development
Early Childhood Education

Children's Workforce Development Council 
Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development 



* Exploring the social and cultural context of early years provision
* Early Years Foundation Stage
* Danish forest school approach
* Montessori
* Reggio Emillia
* High Scope
* Models of reflection
* Research methodology including observation and interview skills and ethical considerations
* Change theory and service improvement
* Preparation for fieldwork


This module aims to explore a range of approaches to early years services drawing on examples from the UK and abroad. Students will carry out fieldwork in an early years setting observing and reflecting on current practice, and exploring opportunities for development and service improvement.


On successful completion of this module students will be able to:
* Demonstrate a critical understanding of a range of approaches to Early Years services in the UK and from abroad.
* To demonstrate knowledge and application of research methodology including observation and interview skills, taking account of ethical issues.
* Critically reflect upon observational fieldwork experience and make recommendations for future development taking account of the policy and legislative context
* Illustrate the tensions, challenges and benefits involved in implementing new approaches and ideas in early years settings.
* To recognise and analyse the value base underpinning early years provision and practice through fieldwork observations, making links to theory


The module will use a range of learning and teaching methods including lectures, small group work, seminars, presentations and reflective accounts. Students will be expected to use the e learning portal. Students will undertake observational visits to early years and childcare settings.


a Summative assessment and rationale for tasks

Sem 2 -Students will submit a 3000 word report based on findings from their fieldwork experience in early years settings.
The report will be submitted at the end of the module

b. Additional formative assessment - detail of process and rationale

A series of formative tasks relating to both lectures and fieldwork observations will be woven throughout the module and will relate to sections of the summative report. The tasks will include presentations and written work.

c. Indication of how students will get feedback and how this will support their learning

Formative feedback will be in the form of peer and tutor written and verbal comments. This feedback will support students in the completion of their summative report. 
Summative reports will receive detailed written feedback from tutors.

TE0558 | Play and the Early Years Curriculum

Synopsis of Module

This module is designed to enable students to develop their understanding of the role of play in children's development and learning. Students will explore the problematic nature of play, construct their understanding of different types of play and contrasting theoretical perspectives, and in addition become familiar with the form and content of the early years curriculum. They will also compare and contrast strategies that practitioners use to support and extend children's learning through play. 
By the end of the module students will have a sound understanding of the content of the early years curriculum and the role of play within it. They will be able to demonstrate their understanding of a range of contrasting theoretical perspectives, analyse and interpret children's play, and compare and contrast strategies adults use to support and extend children's play. In addition they will rehearse and develop the skills for working with others.
Students will learn through lectures, seminars, tutorials, fieldwork and peer presentations.

Play in the early years curriculum builds upon students' learning in year one during which they construct their understanding of different types of provision and practice. The module challenges students to reflect, question, problematise issues and develop a critical approach to academic study, and play in particular.

Indicative Reading List or other Learning Resources

Adams, S., Alexander, E., Drummond, M.J. and Moyles, J. (2004) Inside the Foundation Stage, Recreating the Reception Year. London: Association of Teachers and Lecturers

Abbott, L. and Langston, A. (2005) Birth to Three Matters. Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Anning, A. and Edwards, A. (2004) Promoting Children's Learning From Birth To Five. Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill

Arnold, C. (2003) Observing Harry. Buckingham: Open University Press

Broadhead, P. (2001) 'Investigating Sociability And Cooperation In Four And Five Year Olds In Reception Class Settings' In International Journal Of Early Years Education, 9,1,23-35.

Department for Children, Schools and Families. (2008) The Early Years Foundation Stage. Statutory Framework and Guidance. London: DSCF Publications

Goldschmied, E. and Jackson, S. (2003) People under Three: Young Children in Daycare. London: Routledge

Moyles, J. (ed) (2005) The Excellence of Play. Maidenhead: Open University Press

Nutbrown, C. (2006) Threads of Thinking. Young Children Learning And The Role Of Early Education. 3rd edn. London: Sage publications

O'Brien, J. And Smith, J. (2002) 'Childhood Transformed? Risk Perceptions And The Decline Of Free Play', British Journal Of Occupational Therapy, 65, 3, 123-128

Pugh, G. (ed) (2006) Contemporary Issues in the Early Years. 3rd edn. London: Paul Chapman publishing

Santer, J., Griffiths, C. and Goodall, D. (2007) Free Play in Early Childhood: A Literature Review. London: National Children's Bureau

Santer, J. and Cookson, L. (2008) Early Years, Childcare and Every Child Matters in Barker, R. (ed) Making Sense of Every Child Matters. Multi Professional Practice Guidance. Bristol: The Policy Press

Wood, E. and Attfield, J. (2005) Play, Learning and the Early Childhood Curriculum. 2nd edn. London: Paul Chapman Publishing

Contemporary Issues in Early Childhood
Early Childhood Education
Early Childhood Research and Practice
Education 3-13

Outline Syllabus

- The History of Play
- The problematic nature of play
- The nature of the curriculum: the hidden curriculum, the curriculum within the child
- Definitions of play
- Types of play
- Perspectives on play - psychoanalytical, individual and social constructivist approaches
- Environments for play - indoor and outdoor
- Play and risk
- Schematic development
- Symbolic representation
- The role of the adult in play
- Observing, Assessing, Planning and Resourcing play
- Observing, recording and assessing children's play
- Working with parents and other professionals (the play therapist, occupational therapist and play worker)

Aims of Module

The aim of this module is to facilitate students' understanding of play and its place in the early year's curriculum. Students critically engage with professional ideologies and practices, and contrasting and conflicting theoretical perspectives. In addition they examine the principles underpinning the form and content of the early year's curriculum, critically reflecting upon its appropriateness for young children. By doing so they reflect upon and identify the role that the practitioner plays in supporting and developing children's development and learning through play. They also differentiate between interaction that is supportive of, or a hindrance to, children's learning.
During group work students develop the skills of communication, cooperation, collaboration, self-projection, planning and time management.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to :
1. Demonstrate their understanding of a range of contrasting theoretical perspectives on the nature of play and its role within the early years curriculum
2. Critically engage with the problematic nature of play and its role in Early Years practice. 
3. Analyse and interpret children's play, selecting analytical frameworks that are 'fit for purpose'. 
4. Compare and contrast strategies for supporting and extending children's play, evaluating them for their effectiveness. 
5. Work collaboratively with others to construct understandings and disseminate findings.


Assessment and Feedback Strategy

a. Summative assessment and rationale for tasks

The assessment for this module is in two parts. (LO: 1 & 5)
- Students will work together in groups to produce either a booklet or poster for parents which will describe the purpose of play in the early years curriculum. This will be accompanied by a reflective analysis of their individual roles in both process and product (1000 words) - 30%

This will take place half way through the module and will provide students with the opportunity to identify key concepts and to select methods of communication and dissemination that are fit for purpose.

- At the end of the module students will submit an assignment in which they will critically engage with the role of play in the early years curriculum, and compare and contrast practitioners' strategies for supporting and extending children's play. (2000 words) - 70% (LO: 1 - 4)

This will be submitted at the end of the module and will enable students to build upon their earlier insights by selecting appropriate material, presenting ideas showing awareness of the complexity of the field, and structure and sustain an argument. 

b. Additional formative assessment - detail of process and rationale

Formative assessment will be woven throughout the module in the form of short written and reflective tasks, self assessment and peer and tutor feedback. A group presentation on an aspect of play will provide students with opportunities to share their learning during the planning stage and both verbal and written feedback from students and tutors following peer presentation. Following this, students can formulate an action plan. 
(LO: 1, 2 & 5)

c. Indication of how students will get feedback and how this will support their learning

Feedback from the peer presentation will be in verbal and written form. Students will select the domains for the latter, with both peers and tutors providing constructive comments.

Each summative piece of work will receive detailed written feedback which will identify areas of strength and those for development, thus enabling students to produce their personal action plans.

Learning and Teaching Strategy

Learning and teaching strategies are varied and designed to facilitate students' participation in the learning process as well as build upon previous experiences and learning.
Students will construct their understanding of key concepts and contrasting theoretical perspectives through lectures, seminars, peer presentations, observation of DVD material, independent study, collaborative group work, fieldwork and formative and summative assessment.
Students will have access to lecture notes and additional materials through the e-learning portal.

TE0673 | Young Children as Meaning Makers

Synopsis of Module

This module is in two parts. Part 1 is designed to build on student's knowledge of the development of young children as meaning-makers and communicators. Students will be encouraged to explore theoretical approaches to early language and communication and to evaluate critically where appropriate the effectiveness of approaches within current policy and practice to this important aspect of children's early development.

Part 2 is designed to enable students to apply their understanding of these perspectives through observations of children in home or early childhood settings. Through this experience students will be encouraged to analyse critically a variety of methodological approaches and theoretical stances to the issue of meaning -making.

Indicative Reading List or other Learning Resources

Aitchison, Jean. (2007) The Articulate Mammal: an Introduction to Psycholinguistics. 5th edn. London: Routledge 

Anning, A. and Ring, K. (2004) Making Sense of Children's Drawings. London: Paul Chapman Publishing

Bruner, J. and Haste, H. (1987) Making Sense. London: Routledge

Dunn, J. (2004) Children's Friendships: the beginning of intimacy. Oxford: Blackwell

Ferneyhough, C. (2008) The Baby in the Mirror. Cambridge: Granta 

Gerhardt, S. (2006) Why Love Matters. London: Psychology Press

Griffiths, F. (2002) Communication Counts. London: David Fulton

Gopnik, A. and Meltzoff, A. (1998) Words Thoughts and Theories. Cambridge: MIT

Gopnik, A., Meltzoff, A. and Kuhl, P. (1999) How Babies Think. London: Phoenix

Harris, J. (1990) Early Language Development: Implications For Clinical And Educational Practice. London: Routledge

Hall, N. and Robinson, A. (1995) Exploring Writing and Play in the Early Years. London: David Fulton

Hope, G. (2008) Thinking and Learning through Drawing. London: Sage

Klein, D. (2000) Promoting Learning through active interaction: A Guide To Early Communication. USA: Paul Brookes

Matthews, J. (2003) Drawing and Painting: Children and Visual Representation. London: Paul Chapman Publishing

Paley, V.G. (1998) Molly is Three: Growing up in School. Chicago: University of Chicago Press

Pahl, K. (1999) Transformations: Meaning Making In Nursery Education. London: Trentham

Stern, D. (1977) The First Relationship: Infant and Mother. London: Fontana 

Tizard, B. and Hughes, M. (1986) Young Children Learning. London: Fontana

Wells, G. (ed) (1991) The Meaning Makers. London: Hodder and Stoughton

Australian Journal of Early Childhood
Child Development
Childcare, Health and Development
Early Childhood Education Journal
Early Years Education
Early Years
First Language
Journal of Child Development
International Journal of Early Childhood
International Journal Early Years Education
Zero to Three

Outline Syllabus

- The concept of meaning- making as a domain of development in early childhood
- The significance of attachment theory in relation to early language and communication and making sense of the world
- The impact of research into brain development in relation to early language and communication and making sense of the world
- Understanding meaning -making in relation to early years and childcare settings 
- Comparative understanding of national policies and strategies in relation to meaning- making within the early years curriculum
- Overview of range and scope of various aspects of meaning -making within national and international contexts
- Research paradigms in relation to the identification and analysis of young children as meaning - makers
- Personal development of student including communication and interpersonal skills
- Observation techniques and analysis of observations


Aims of Module

This module aims to build significantly on student's knowledge of the young child as meaning-maker in relation to the child's developing capacity for making sense of their environment and to further develop students' critical understanding of a range of philosophical approaches and practices in early childhood settings in relation to the young child as meaning-maker. Students will develop an evaluative framework for the analysis of children's understanding and strategies for communication. A key focus of the module is to enable students to take personal responsibility for undertaking and critically analysing different approaches to fieldwork observation. 

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to:
1. Critically analyse and discuss theoretical approaches to the domain of 'meaning-making' in relation to the development of the young child
2. Evaluate critically the notion of 'developmentally appropriate strategies' in relation to facilitating children's skill as communicators and meaning-makers
3. Evaluate critically a range of approaches and practices to 'meaning-making' from a multi-agency perspective.
4. Demonstrate a critical understanding and application of different methodologies used in fieldwork observations
5. Use opportunities to reflect on personal development
6. Critically reflect on key understandings in relation to unit content and be able to make recommendations for effective service development


Learning and Teaching Strategy

Collaborative group learning will form a significant part of the course. Lectures, seminars, workshop exercises and tutorials will provide opportunities for course members to exchange ideas and consider alternative perspectives. In addition there will be opportunities to undertake individual research and fieldwork observation. Attendance at tutorial sessions forms an essential part of this module. Students will be expected to use the e learning portal. 

Assessment and Feedback Strategy

a. Summative assessment and rationale for tasks

The summative assessment will be in two parts. Part 1 will account for 30% of the overall mark for this module. Part 2 will account for 70% of the overall mark for this module. 

1. (submitted end semester 1)
Students will submit an assignment in which they critically engage with the key issues and concepts explored in relation to the young child as meaning- maker.
Example essay title -What is encompassed by the phrase 'meaning-making' within early childhood? Discuss the dynamic nature of this concept in the light of contemporary theory. As appropriate consider the implications of this theory, for practice in early childhood settings. (1500 words) (LO: 1 - 6)

2. (submitted end semester 2)
Students will devise and carry out an observation/s of a young child/children, in which they are engaged in communicating to others (adult/child) . The observation/ s will be accompanied by an in depth analysis of the observation/s taking account of current theoretical debates and perspectives on the development of language and communication. The account should show an awareness of research methodologies in relation to communication/language studies of young children. (2500 words) Linked to (LO: 1 - 6)

b. Additional formative assessment - detail of process and rationale

In part 1 - working in small groups, students will find an appropriate and up-to- date journal article relating to key themes of the module. Students will summarise the article into key points. The article and the key points will be attached to the e-learning portal for other students' use. (LO: 1 - 6)

In part two -Prepare a non-assessed presentation in which findings from observations are interpreted in the light of your understanding of appropriate theory and presented to small groups of peers for discussion and development/ sharing of ideas. (LO: 1 - 6)
In both of the formative assessments feedback will be from both tutors and peers and will take the form of discussion and written feedback which will be given immediately. Feedback will be used to inform the summative assessment.

TE0672 | Leadership and Management in Early Years

Synopsis of Module

Leadership in early childhood settings and services operates in a unique set of contexts (policy, professional, organisational and cultural) and requires competence in a wide range of skills and knowledge. This module allows students to critically evaluate the unique nature of leadership and management in early childhood settings, and appreciate the nature of challenges and opportunities faced by those leaders and managers. The module supports exploration of these topics through themes such as: Leading SELF, Leading LEARNING, Leading QUALITY and Leading TEAMS.

Indicative Reading List or other learning resources

NOTE: This module utilises Northumbria's live reading list service, which enables students to benefit from a continually updated set of resources, presented in the most appropriate format (e.g. by module theme). Indicative key resources are included below:

Aubrey C. (2011), Leading and managing in the early years. London: SAGE.

Clark R. M., & Murray J. (2012), Reconceptualizing leadership in the early years. Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Dahlberg G., Moss P., & Pence A. R. (2013). Beyond quality in early childhood education and care: languages of evaluation. Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge.

Hersted L., & Gergen K. J. (2013). Relational Leading. Taos Institute Publications.

Murray, J. & McDowall Clark, R. (2013). Reframing leadership as a participative pedagogy: the working theories of early years professionals. Early Years, 33(3), pp.289-301.

Miller L., & Cable C. (2011). Professionalization, leadership and management in the early years. London: SAGE.

Osgood J. (2012). Narratives from the nursery: negotiating professional identities in early childhood. London: Routledge.

Robson I. (2013). Women's leadership as narrative practice: Identifying "tent making", "dancing" and "orchestrating" in UK Early Years services. Gender in Management: An International Journal, 28(6), pp.338-358.

Rodd J. (2013). Leadership in early childhood: the pathway to professionalism. Maidenhead, Berkshire: McGraw-Hill.

Trodd L., & Chivers L. (2011). Interprofessional working in practice: learning and working together for children and families. Maidenhead: Open University Press.

Outline Syllabus

- Introduction and module overview
- Policy context: expectations, standards and quality
- Theoretical perspectives and models of leadership, management and integration
- Definition (L & M in this context)
- Understanding the leader: identity, self awareness and development
- Dealing with complexity and change (the challenge of the early years leader)
- Delivering results: the outcome focused environment
- Values and ethics
- Effective teams: understanding dynamics and processes 
- Leadership and integration: messages from research and practice
- Leading learning organisations


Aims of Module

Students will explore the nature of leadership and management in early childhood services within the context of the integrated children's workforce. Students will also be given opportunities to consider ways in which leadership and team management skills can be applied in these contexts. The importance of self awareness, reflection and leadership development will be a key feature of this module. 

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module student will be able to:
1. Appreciate the values, nature, diversity and context of early childhood service provision
2. To appreciate the importance of self awareness, reflection and development for leaders and aspiring leaders in early childhood services
3. Identify and analyse key elements, processes and dynamics associated with leadership of early childhood services
4. To understand the leadership implications of integrated working in early childhood services taking account of professional identity, roles and boundary issues amongst other factors
5. To critically analyse relevant national standards for leaders and managers of integrated early childhood services and to consider the application of these standards
6. To critically appraise the elements of effective team working in integrated settings


Learning and Teaching Strategy

The module will use a range of learning and teaching methods including lectures, small group work, seminars, interactive and collaborative web 2.0 technology (twitter, eLP blog). Students will be expected to use the e learning portal as active contributors. 


Assessment and Feedback Strategy

a Summative assessment and rationale for tasks

Summative assessment for this module is a single, 4,000 word assignment. Students may select their assignment title from a small number (approx. 3) of options to be presented at the start of the module in the handbook. 

Assessment of all options will be subject to the following assessment criteria:

* Demonstrates effective understanding of all the module learning outcomes.
* Academic writing is consistent with published Society Joint Honours level 6 elaborated grade descriptors
* Effectively engages with and applies relevant academic literature (e.g. theoretical material or critical social policy discussion), government publications (e.g. Legislation, Guidance) and other sector -relevant (e.g. evaluation studies, professional publications) material. 

b. Additional formative assessment - detail of process and rationale:
Students will be required to develop a detailed plan for the summative assignment addressing both structure and content of their planned work and demonstrating ways in which they will meet the published assessment criteria. Tutors will specify the format of the plan which will require a series of narrative summaries of proposed material divided by sections and will also require details of references to academic literature. Students will receive a group tutorial to support them in the development of this plan and will submit this plan in sufficient time to receive detailed written formative feedback from module tutors. 

c. Indication of how students will get feedback and how this will support their learning

The bulk of feedback on this module will be formative. Peer and tutor feedback on verbal and prepared contributions to seminar work will form an important part of this, as will written formative feedback on the formative assessment. Interactive and tutors' video feedback (speaking to camera) will be prepared by the module team in the form of responses to blog posts on the eLP, and provision of short video evaluations of student contributions to lectures (e.g. questions asked) and seminars. Students will receive summary feedback on the final summative assessment. 

PP0217 | Joint Honours Project 


The quadruple module is designed to give students experience of practical fieldwork in which they will collect, analyse and present data to form a dissertation. The fieldwork will extend from previous work within the degree and personal interest. Whilst not imperative strong recommendation is made that it bears relevance to potential future employment or further study.


Adams R. Dominelli, L. & Payne, M. [Eds.] (2009), Social Work. Themes, issues, and Critical Debates 3rd edn. London: Palgrave. 

Albrecht, G.L., Fitzpatrick R. & Scrimshaw C. (2003) The Handbook of Social Studies in Health and Medicine. London: Sage.

Allott M. & Robb M. [Eds.] (1998) Understanding health and social care: an introductory reader. London: Sage in association with the Open University.

Armstrong D (1994), Outline of Sociology as applied to Medicine. 4th. Edition. London: Butterworth Heinemann.

Baggott, R. (2010) Public Health: Policy and Politics. London: Macmillan.

Banks, S. (2004) Ethics, Accountability and the Social Professions, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Bauman, Z (2001) Thinking Sociologically. London: Blackwell.

Beattie A. Gott M. Jones L. and Siddell M. (1993), Health and Well-being: A reader. Open University Press.

Beck, U., 1992 Risk Society Towards a New Modernity. London, Sage Publications. 

*Bell, J. (2005) Doing Your Research Project: a guide to first time researchers in education (4th Edition) Oxford University Press

Bochel, H. et al. (2009) Social Policy: Issues and Developments. 2nd edn. Harlow: Pearson /Prentice Hall.

Bowling A (2009), Research Methods in Health. Investigating Health and Health Services. 3rd edn. Buckingham: Open University Press. 

Bowling A. (2005) Measuring health: a review of quality of life measurement scales. 3rd edn. Buckingham: Open University Press.

Christensen, P. and James, A. (2007) Research with Children. Perspectives and Practices. Falmer Press

Cohen, L., Manion, L. and Morrison, K.(2007) Research Methods in Education. Sixth edition. Routledge 

Colucci, E. (2007) "Focus Groups can be Fun". The use of Activity-oriented Questions in Focus Group Discussions' Qualitative Health Review. Sage publications

Davey, B. Gray, A. & Seale, C. [Eds.] (2001) Health and disease: a reader. 3rd. Edition. Buckingham: Open University Press.

England: Department of Health 2004 Every Child Matters: The Stationary Office, London

England: Department of Health 2006 Reaching Out: An Action Plan on Social Exclusion, September, Crown Copyright, London

Engels, F 1986 The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State, Foreign Languages Press, Peking

Fraser, D. (2009) The Evolution of the British welfare State. 4th edn. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

Garland, J. & Garland, C. (2001), Life review in health and social care: a practitioner's guide. Hove: Brunner-Routledge.

Germov. J [Ed.] (2009), Second opinion: an introduction to health sociology. 4th edn. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Gibbs, L. & Gambrill, E. (1999) Critical thinking for social workers: exercises for the helping professions. London: Pine Forge.

Giddens, A. (2002) Runaway world: How Globalisation is reshaping our lives. 2 edn. London: Routledge.

Gomm, R. & Davies, C. [Eds.] (2000) Using evidence in health and social care. London: Sage. 

Gray A [Ed.] (2001), World health and disease. 3rd edn. Buckingham: Open University Press.

Greene, S. and Hogan, .D. (2005) Researching Children's Experiences. Sage

Grieg, A., Taylor, J. and Mc Kay, T. (2007) Doing Research With Children. Second edition. Sage. 

Hammersley, M. (ed.) (1999) Researching School Experience. Ethnographic studies of Teaching and Learning. Falmer Press 

Higginbotham, N. Albrecht, G. Connor, L. [Eds.] (2001), Health social science: a transdisciplinary and complexity perspective. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Hood, S., Kelley, P., and Mayall, P. (1996) 'Children as research subjects: a Risky Enterprise' in Children and Society, Volume 10 number 2. pp. 117-128

Kemmis, S. (2009) 'Action research as a practice based practice' in Educational Action Research, vol 17,no.3. pp.463-474. 

Kerrison, S. & McFarlane, A. (2000), Official Statistics: An unofficial guide. London: Radical Health Statistics Group / Arnold

Laine, M. de. (2000) Fieldwork, participation and practice: ethics and dilemmas in qualitative research. Sage

Mac Naughton, G., Rolfe, S. and Siraj-Blatchford, I. (2001) Doing Early Childhood Research. International Perspectives on Theory and Practice. Open University Press

Mahon, A., Glendenning, C. , Clarke, K. and Craig, G. (1996) 'Researching Children: Methods and Ethics' in Children and Society, Volume 10 number 2. pp. 117-128

Malin, N., Wilmot S. and Manthorpe J. (2002) Key Concepts and Debates in Health and Social Policy. Buckingham: Open University Press.

Nettleton, S & Gustafsson, U. [Eds.] (2006), The Sociology of health and illness reader. 2nd edn. Cambridge: Polity Press.

Great Britain. Parliament. House of Commons [Current edition], On The State of the Public Health. London: The Stationary Office. 

Parton, N. [Ed.] (1996), Social theory, social change and social work. Routledge,

Purdy, M & Banks, D. (2001), The Sociology and politics of health: a reader. London: Routledge.

* Robson, C. (2002) Real World Research . A resource for Social Scientists and Practitioner-Researchers. Second edition. Blackwell Publishing 

Scheirer, M. A., 1983 Household Structure among Welfare Families: Correlates and Consequences. Journal of Marriage Families, 45, p 761-771

Taylor, C. and White, S. (2000) Practising Reflexivity in Health and Welfare: Making Knowledge, Buckingham: Open University Press.

Unwin N. Carr S. Leeson J. and Pless-Mulloli T. (1997), An introductory study guide to public health and epidemiology. Buckingham: Open University Press. 

The following Journals may be useful:
Social Science and Medicine. 
Critical Public Health. 
Sociology of Health and Illness. 
Web-Based Resources: - World Health Organisation.


The student will undertake the following

1. Building on their existing knowledge, students will be encouraged to reflect in depth upon
issues that are emerging on the course
2. Students will examine different models of research appropriate to an investigation within their 
selected area of study. Issues of ethics and access, developing a research focus and
research questions will be developed into an area of special interest to individual students
3. Project management skills and research skills will be further developed
4. Progress reporting
5. A research project
6. Identification of a feasible study, development of a series of research questions lined to the 
literature, identify an appropriate research design/method of enquiry, negotiate access and
ethical issues
7. Analyse and reflect upon the data collected in relation to the substantive literature
8. Complete the writing and presentation of the project


1. To further develop students' enquiry based research skills
2. To plan a relevant research initiative in the student's selected study area
3. To develop relevant skills to enable appropriate fieldwork to be undertaken
4. To further develop understanding of ethical issues
5. To carry out and complete a research project in the genre of a selected part-route


The student will be able to

1. Critically discriminate key issues in the theoretical literature with reference to their research 
2. Present a feasible research proposal for their special study, including an initial literature 
search in substantive and methodological areas, and negotiating access and ethical
guidelines with appropriate people
3. Demonstrate the ability to execute and write up a substantial project study related to their 
chosen field of study.


Initial general generic sessions will be held followed by specialised areas of study sessions. Students will opt for a specialised area relating to one of their part-routes. Where appropriate this may be informed by the other part-route.

Project Proposal

Workshops and reciprocal peer feedback sessions, along with lectures, groupwork, directed and independent learning will be employed. Peer support will play an important part in formative assessment and feedback. Tutorial opportunities will support students' increasing independence in managing their own learning.


This will involve lectures, groupwork, directed learning, independent learning, workshops, tutorials, surgery sessions, to support students in collected, analysing and reporting their fieldwork.


Project proposal
Assessment is by means of a research proposal, up to 3,000 words, written to a specified brief. It takes the form of a research bid. As assessment criteria protocol has been developed and is published in the module handbook.


Assessment of the project, should conform to the guidelines issued in the unit handbook and be between 8,000-9,000 words. An assessment criteria protocol is publised in the module handbook.

PP0618 | Changing Childhoods


The module aims to engage students in a dynamic and critical analysis of the changing nature of 'childhood and youth'. This module focuses on 'critical moments' of change in history through an examination of policy and legislation; movement, migration and settlement; and the individual and organisational 'pioneers of change', drawing upon historical and contemporary examples. Students move on to explore contemporary 'childhood and youth' in the context of technological, societal and demographic changes, and are encouraged to adopt a futuristic view of childhood. Throughout the module, discourses of participation; rights; and cohesion are explored. These discourses are related to issues of children and young people's' visibility, self-agency and advocacy. The module starts from the premise that 'children and young people' despite their commonality of age have multiple and diverse identities and have the potential to act as agents of change. 

Teaching and learning strategies for this module will include the use of lectures to outline the main concepts and theories; facilitated group discussions to explore the concepts in more depth and draw out individual and collective experiences; directed independent study on campus, informal group presentations, and facilitated visits to groups and archives within the North East. 

Students will undertake formative activities designed to develop their understanding of how to use archive material, and their abilities to work in groups to present research material to colleagues. 

The formative activities will inform the summative tasks which will consist of a 1000 word essay focused on the archive materials, and a 3000 essay focused on changing childhoods. 


Archard, D. (2004) Children's Rights and Childhood. 2nd edn. London: Routledge

Buckingham, D and Willet, R.(2006) Digital generations: children, young people, and new media, Lawrence Erlbaum, London

Buckingham, D.(2000) After the death of childhood: growing up in the age of electronic media, Polity, Oxford

Cunningham, H. (2006) The Invention of Childhood, BBC, London

Dyehouse, C.(2012) Girls Growing Up in Late Victorian and Edwardian England, Taylor and Francis, Hoboken 

Fletcher, A. (2008) Growing Up In England: The Experience Of Childhood 1600-1914 New Haven. London: Yale University Press

Franklin, B.(2002) The New handbook of children's rights: comparative policy and practice , Routledge, London

Gill, T.(2007) No Fear: Growing Up in a Risk Averse Society, Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, London

Humphries, J.(2010) Childhood and Child Labour in the Industrial Revolution, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge

Hutchby, I and Moran-Ellis, J.(2001) Children, technology and culture: the impacts of technologies in children's everyday lives, RoutledgeFalmer, London

James, A and James, A.(Constructing Childhood: theory, policy and social practice, Palgrave McMillan, Basingstoke

Kassem, D; Murphy,L; Taylor, E.(2010) Key issues in childhood and youth studies, Routledge, Abingdon 

Kehily, M.J.(2009) An Introduction to childhood studies, Open University Press, Maidenhead

Knight, S.(2009) Forest Schools and outdoor learning in the early years, Sage, London

Livingstone, S.(2002) Young People and the New Media: Childhood and the changing media environment, Sage, London

Macdonald, R. and Marsh, J. (2005) Disconnected Youth? Growing Up in Britain's Poorest Neighbourhoods. Basingstoke: Palgrave/ MacMillan

Marsh, J.(2005) Popular Culture, New media and digital literacy in early childhood, RoutledgeFalmer, London

McCullough, G.(2004) Documentary Research in education, history and the social sciences, RoutledgeFalmer, London

Montgomery, H., Burr, R. and Woodhead, M. (2003) Changing Childhood: Local and Global. Chichester: Wiley/Open University

Mulley, C. (2009) The Woman Who Saved The Children: A Biography of Eglantine Jebb, Founder of Save The Children. London: Save The Children

Pearson, G.(1983) Hooligan, A History of Respectable Fears, MacMillan, London

Postman, N.(1994) The Disappearance of Childhood, Vintage Books, New York

Prout, A(2005) The future of childhood: towards the interdisciplinary study of children, RoutledgeFalmer, London 

Qvortrup,J; Corsaro,W A; Honig, M.(2009) The Palgrave handbook of childhood studies, Palgrave MacMillan, Basingstoke

Rapley, T.(2007) Doing conversation, discourse and document analysis, Sage, London

Zwozdiak-Myers, P.(2007) Childhood and youth studies, Learning Matters, Exeter


* Pioneers, organisations, political and social advocates for children and young people- international, national and local
* Children's Rights and the UNCRC
* Why rights for children?; Rights and Responsibilities; A Rights-based approach to developing and providing services: Advocacy and Rights
* The constructions of 'need' and ''impact' in service provision and delivery. The distribution of power and control: leading and co-ordinating services. The construction of new professional identities
* Children and Young People's Participation
The ethics of participation; participation and service development; building a culture of participation and giving young people a voice
* 'Childhood', Movement and Change
Social and political influences on childhood; pioneering movements; 'critical moments of change'; Pioneers and advocates in 'childhood'; International, national and local.
* Exploring the evidence base: using archive material to explore and research changing childhoods; historical aspects of children and young people's voices
* Childhood, Youth, and the Future
Technological change and childhood; social and political factors which will bring change - eg demography; Children's spaces and urban design;
extended transitions; 
* Children and young people as agents of change
Self-advocacy; young people-led organisations and movements; young people's vision of the future.


The module aims to engage students in a dynamic and critical analysis of the changing nature of 'childhood and youth'. This module focuses on 'critical moments' of change through an examination of policy and legislation; movement, migration and settlement; and the individual and organisational 'pioneers of change', drawing upon historical and contemporary examples.


By the end of this module students will be able to:-
* Evaluate the discourses and concepts impacting upon children's rights, participation and self-agency.
* Critically examine the provision of services and professional practice in relation to children and young people. 
* Analyse how multiple socio-political factors impact upon the lives of children and young people, with particular reference to diversity and community cohesion.
* Apply primary sources/archive material to research children's and young people's experiences.
* Formulate ideas about the future of childhood.



The teaching and learning in this module will include a wide range of strategies to ensure that students have a variety of learning experiences. A combination of lectures and seminar methodologies will provide them with theoretical, anecdotal and case-study material from which to build discussion and debate. Opportunities to share and explore experiences, and learn with fellow students will form an important part of the teaching and learning strategies in this module. In particular students will participate in some small group learning, presentations, independent study, guided study and some guest speaker involvement.

This module will use the following strategies:

* Seminars
* Workshops
* Tutorials
* Directed Study
* Independent learning
* Lectures
* The E-learning Portal will also be used

PP0617 | Childhood and Children’s Literature


This module focuses upon the academic study of contemporary children's fictions. Particular emphasis will be placed on novels, particularly the ways in which they reflect social issues and dilemmas in contemporary children's lives. Stories which deal with childhood themes (such as bullying, family and school life, friendship, relationships, fear) and those which raise issues (such as divorce, homelessness, disability, human rights, the holocaust, terrorism, ecological threat, illness, poverty, racism and sexism) will be critically explored.


Primary texts (examples of children's books to be studied)

Blume, J. (1975) Forever. Victor Gollancz
Boyne, J. (2006) The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas. David Fickling.
Burgess, Melvin. (2003) Doing It Andersen Press
Burningham, John (2003) Granpa Red Fox 
Cassidy, Anne. (2004) Looking for JJ, Scholastic 
Dahl, R. (1983) The Witches. Puffin
Haddon, M. (2004) The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time. Vintage.
Rosen, Michael, (illustrated by Helen Oxenbury) We're Going on a Bear Hunt. Walker
White, E. B. (1963) Charlotte's Web. Puffin
Wilson, Jacqueline. (1999) The Illustrated Mum. Corgi Yearling.

Secondary Texts

Bradford, C, McCallum, R., Mallan, K., & Stephens, J. (2008) New world orders in contemporary children's literature: utopian transformations, Palgrave. (e-book)
Goodwin, P. (ed.) (2008) Understanding children's books: a guide for education professionals. London: Sage. (e-book)
Chambers, A. (2011) Tell Me (Children, Reading & Talk) with The Reading Environment Stroud: Thimble Press 
Hunt, P. (2005) Understanding Children's literature. Routledge. (e-book)
Hunt, P. (2004) International Companion Encyclopaedia of Children's Literature (2nd edition). Routledge. (e-book)
Montgomery, H and Watson, NJ. (eds) (2009) Children's Literature: Classic Texts and contemporary trends. London: Palgrave MacMillan, OUP.
Nel, P and Paul, L (eds.) (2011) Keywords for children's Literature, New York University Press
Reynolds, K, (2007) Radical Children's Literature future visions and aesthetic transformations in juvenile fiction, Palgrave. (e-book)
Reynolds K., and Grenby, M. (2011) (Eds.) Children's Literature Studies: A Research Handbook, Palgrave Macmillan 
Grenby, M. (2008) Children's Literature (Edinburgh Critical Guides to Literature) Edinburgh University Press (e-book)
Rudd, D (ed.) (2010). The Routledge Companion to Children's Literature, Routledge. (e-book)
Tucker, N. & Gamble, N. (2001) N. Family Fictions. Continuum (e-book)
Waller, A. (ed) 2013. Melvin Burgess. London:Palgrave McMillan New Casebooks. 


The ALAN Review (Assembly on Literature for Adolescents)
Books for keeps
Children's Literature in Education
Children's Literature
International Research in Children's literature
The Lion and the Unicorn
Papers: Explorations into Children's literature



* The history of children's literature and the social construction of childhood. Notions of children and childhood and discussions that have informed subsequent debates about the cultural production of a literature 'for' the young
* Perspectives on the critical evaluation of children's fictions. Ideologies of childhood which underpin critical thinking about 'appropriate' literature for children. Children's tastes versus adults' judgements.
* Perspectives on the value of fiction to the developing child. Bibliotherapy. Issues of imaginative quality.
* The conventions of children's literature: the writer's responsibility, the happy ending, suitability, didacticism, the treatment of violence, pessimism. Gender, race and class, propaganda and values.
* Recent trends in children's fictions. The so-called 'new realism' and the problem novel. Links to digital cultures and local resources (e.g. Seven Stories). Social and political issues in children's books. Social themes and issues raised. Contemporary debates. The development of the teenage novel. Alternative viewpoints. 


This module aims to provide an introduction to a range of modern children's authors and examples of their work. The module will increase students' awareness of the varied ways in which childhood and/or youth is represented in children's literature. Moreover, students will consider perspectives on the potential value of the different literary experiences being created for children, adolescent readers and young adults, so that they can identify and explore the competing criteria by which modern children's fiction may be judged.


On successful completion of this module students will be able to:
* Identify, select and contrast a range of fictions produced for children and young people
* Reflect upon the fictional portrayal of children/youth growing up in a range of circumstances
* Critically evaluate the potential value of selected fictions for children and young people
* Debate the criteria by which children's fiction may be judged and identify their own criteria and framework for making judgements about children's literature


The following strategies will be used:
* Lectures
* Seminars 
* Group-work 
* Formative group posters
* Directed learning
* IT in learning and formal assessment.


a Summative assessment and rationale for tasks

Analytic review (4000 words)
Choose an issue or theme that has interested you whilst studying the module. Analyse the presentation of the theme/issue in not more than three children's books. 

This task enables students to exercise choice over their topic/focus and enables them to engage in an in-depth exploration of the subject-area. It requires them to apply concepts and ideas to specific chosen texts, reviewing them accordingly. 

b. Additional formative assessment - detail of process and rationale

In-class debates and group writing activities enable students to practice and rehearse the skills and qualities required in summative tasks, gaining informal feedback on their approaches before they count. As well as feeding forward into the summative assignment, the tasks also enable students to learn from other students' perspectives. 

c. Indication of how students will get feedback and how this will support their learning

Feedback, in the form of informal feed forward is built in throughout the module delivery (see above). As a formative activity at an appropriate point in the module, students will be invited individually to prepare a leaflet for parents that explains what children's literature has to offer to enrich the lives of children or youth. Their leaflet should outline theoretical perspectives of the value of literature. This task enables students to articulate the key theoretical perspectives informing this module's approach to this field of study. It is an important opportunity for students to gain feedback, from tutors and peers, on their developing ideas and conceptual understandings. It encourages students to communicate their ideas in a range of formats, using ICT as appropriate. 

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