Children, Youth and International Development MA (MA)

Brunel University London the United Kingdom

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The award
MA

How long you will study
1 year

Domestic course fees
GBP 4030

How you will study
full-time

Course starts
September

International course fees
GBP 10070

All study options

About Children, Youth and International Development MA at Brunel University London

This programme is unique within the UK in catering specifically for those working, or interested in working, in the field of children, youth and international development. The course will equip you with the conceptual understanding and breadth of empirical knowledge that will enable you to critically evaluate policy and practice in the area of children, youth and development and give you the skills necessary to design and undertake research relating to children, youth and development.Entry RequirementsA good first degree (minimum class 2.2) in a social science subject or appropriate professional experience in international development work or relevant work with children or young people. Course AimsTo equip students with: The conceptual understanding and breadth of empirical knowledge that will enable them to critically evaluate research, policy and practice in the area of children, youth and development An understanding of differing disciplinary perspectives on childhood and youth, and their theoretical and empirical contributions The skills necessary to design and undertake research relating to children, youth and international development Methodological, cognitive and transferable skills and substantive knowledge that will prepare them for employment, further study and civic engagementCourse ContentThe programme combines three core taught modules (accounting for 75 credits) with 45 credits worth of options. The core modules focus on key issues relating to international development, children and youth, and in particular the rights and participation of young people. They also prepare students in research design and practice, in preparation for the dissertation. The core modules also introduce briefly a range of disciplinary perspectives on childhood and youth, and also the concept of interdiciplinarity. The option modules offer a unique opportunity to appreciate in depth how children and youth-related issues are addressed from alternative disciplinary perspectives. The programme is intended to relate to the needs of organisations working in the field of children, youth and international development. Students will have the opportunity, should they wish, to undertake a sustained project with an external organisation as part of a placement module. This may be an organisation with which they already have links, such as a current of former employer. They may also choose to apply their 60 credit dissertation to the needs of an identified community or organisation. A range of teaching and learning techniques are employed on the programme, most of which stress the active involvement of students in discussion and debate. The programme also emphasises reflective, independent learning, both by individuals and groups, and students are well supported to achieve this through, for instance, tutorials, workshops and seminar discussions. Staff place a strong emphasis on tutorial support and monthly tutorials are integrated into core modules. Tutorials focus on the development of study skills (critical reading and writing), careers support, exam and assignment preparation, feedback on assessments and help in developing research proposals.Typical ModulesInternational Development, Childhood and YouthThe module comprises three parts. Part A will introduce the module, exploring definitions of childhood, youth and international development, and theories of childhood and youth. In particular students will be introduced to the new social studies of childhood. The key tenets of this approach – the social construction of childhood and youth, and the agency of young people – will subsequently be used to examine how theory, policy and practice in international development has accounted for and impacted on young people’s lives. Specifically, in Part B of the module, the following aspects of theory, policy and practice will be considered, first in general terms and then in relation to young people Theories of, and historical approaches to, development The contested moral terrain of international development: social justice, responsibility and the construction of passive subjects (including the mobilisation of 'the child' as the ultimate passive, apolitical development object) Globalisation, global agendas and global institutions (including the export of a 'global model of childhood' through international conventions and organisations such as UNICEF) Policy environments: aid policy and politics, the state and NGOs (including changes in the delivery of education and healthcare to children) Development programmes and projects (including programmes and projects for street children) Part C examines some key conceptual tools that are used in development studies to help understand the lives of the poor. Poverty, well-being, vulnerability and resilience Intergenerational relations: families and social reproduction Livelihoods and sustainability Spatialities – urban-rural interactions, urban and rural lives, migration These concepts will be introduced to students, and their application to children and youth investigated. Critical dialogue between the social studies of childhood and concepts of development studies will both highlight the need for development studies to consider young people and challenge the assumptions embedded in both conceptual fields.Global Agendas on Young People, Rights and Participation Main topics of study: human rights: history, critiques and mobilisation; theorising children’s rights: child liberation and caretaker views; changing conceptions of children’s rights; the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child: history and critiques; alternative conceptions of children’s rights: the African Charter; children’s rights in practice: children’s rights in national laws; claiming rights; participatory development: history and practices; children’s participation: the arguments; participatory projects with children; problematising children’s participation; youth and participation; youth politics and activism.Researching Children, Childhood and YouthMain topics of study: What is research? Philosophical foundations of social research; politics and ethics of social research, including considerations for cross-cultural research; special considerations for researching with children (including ethical issues) Designing a research strategy for academic and policy research; designing monitoring and evaluation of projects; researching with/ in organisations; data collection (secondary data sources, fieldwork, collecting quantitative data, collecting qualitative data, visual methods, PAR etc); data analysis (quantitative and qualitative, discourse analysis, policy analysis, programme evaluation); communicating research – writing up and other dissemination strategies.DissertationThe nature of the dissertation will vary with the particular specialism, but it is expected that the focus of the study will have relevance or purpose beyond immediate and practical day-to-day problems. The choice will be made in consultation with the dissertation supervisor and, where appropriate, the employer. The dissertation supervisor will make the final decision on the suitability of the research.The Anthropology of Childhood and YouthMain topics of study: the concept of the child in society; children's participation in society; children's ways of coping with violence; child play; child labour; the history of youth as a political category; young people's resistance to marginalisation; the radicalisation of young people.Sociology of Youth and Youth WorkMain topics of study: the study of the Social world; society and social processes; the sociology of youth; deviance, control, crime and young people; sociology, youth work and the youth service; young people in non-western cultures.Contemporary Issues in Youth and Community WorkMian topics of study: education and lifelong learning: roles for youth work; dimensions of social cohesion: class, race, gender and disability in youth and community work; the significance of community and community work; listening to young people’s voices; youth work, citizenship and society.AssessmentThe form of assessment used depends upon the aims of particular modules, but includes essays, exams, oral presentations, debates, poster presentations and reports. Care has been taken to balance the variety of assessment strategies across the degree and to employ methods that will enable students to develop and practise a range of transferable skills.CareersThe course prepares graduates for work in international development NGOs or in government ministries and agencies in developing countries.Special FeaturesThe programme is also innovative in its interdisciplinarity. Unlike other childhood studies programmes, which are almost exclusively located in a single department and taught from a single disciplinary perspective, the proposed programme draws upon expertise and modules from a range of disciplinary traditions. The programme is based in the School of Sport and Education, with the core modules delivered primarily, but not exclusively, by members of the Human Geography Research Centre within that School. This Research Centre specialises in geographies of children and young people. However, the MA programme is also a core activity of Brunel's Interdisciplinary Centre for Child and Youth Focused Research, which represents a concentration of over thirty academic staff from across the University whose research interests lie in the broad field of children and youth. Many of the Centreís members conduct research with young people in the global South, from a range of disciplinary perspectives including geography, sociology, anthropology, psychology, health sciences, social work and sport sciences. In both core and specialist option modules, therefore, students will be explicitly exposed to innovative high profile research that relates to the fields of children, youth and international development.

Study options for this course

  • The award How you will study How long you will study Course starts Domestic course fees International course fees
  • The awardMAHow you will studyFull-timeHow long you will study1 year
    Course startsSeptemberDomestic course feesGBP 4030International course feesGBP 10070
  • The awardMAHow you will studyPart-timeHow long you will study2 years
    Course startsSeptemberDomestic course feesGBP 2015International course feesGBP 5035

Entry requirements for this course

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